Sep 3, 2010

Query- Tainted Legacy (2nd Revision.)

Click here to read the original query.
Click here to read the first revision.

Many thanks to all who've helped out with this, I hope I've taken in account all the great advice. And thanks, Rick, for providing this amazing service, it's wonderful!


Dear _______


All Lizzy Parker wants is to do a good job, and as scullery maid for the Creswells she works hard and learns quickly. But when a priceless Creswell heirloom goes missing and all the evidence points towards her, who’s going to care whether or not she scrubs a good bedpan?

Lizzy finds herself in the dock for the theft, and her only alibi hangs on the word of Jack Buchanan; a regular visitor to the house and the subject of much below-stairs gossip – some even say he killed his best friend during their tour of duty in Africa.

Despite the rumours, Lizzy pins her hopes on the unspoken bond that has grown between them, hoping that will bring him to her rescue. But Jack lets her down and, with the evidence stacked against her, Lizzy is convicted and sentenced to five years in Holloway.

She is forced to put her trust in Jack once more when, shortly after her release, her sister is kidnapped in the belief Lizzy still has the diamond.

Aware he owes her, Jack agrees to help and as they work together to release Emily, Lizzy learns the truth about Jack and the secret war work that had kept him from giving evidence at her trial. She also learns that those rumours are true: he did kill his friend, he admits it. The choice Lizzy must make now, is whether she can trust him with her life.



Following your guidelines in the Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, I am pleased to enclose the synopsis and first three chapters of my 98,000 word historical novel TAINTED LEGACY, for your consideration.

I am currently writing a companion novella covering Lizzy’s time in prison, entitled The Stolen Years.

Many thanks for your time.

3 comments:

Dominique said...

This version is much better. You've trimmed a lot of the excess and gotten the focus on the main characters and tension. My only thought is that maybe you don't need to mention the rumors -- true or not-- that he killed his best friend, since I'm not sure they really add to the query.

Anonymous Author said...

While I agree with Dominique that this is better, you can still cut a lot of excess here.

Example:

"Despite the rumours, Lizzy pins her hopes on the unspoken bond that has grown between them, hoping that will bring him to her rescue. But Jack lets her down and, with the evidence stacked against her, Lizzy is convicted and sentenced to five years in Holloway."

shortens to:

"Despite the rumours, Lizzy pins her hopes on the unspoken bond that has grown between them. But Jack lets her down. Lizzy is convicted and sentenced to five years in Holloway."

There are several other places where there are phrases that unnecessarily lengthen your query.

This sentence is a little hard to understand:

"She is forced to put her trust in Jack once more when, shortly after her release, her sister is kidnapped in the belief Lizzy still has the diamond."

I wouldn't mention the novella. They're hard to sell.

Mesmerix said...

I don't have much to add to the critique this time around. I agree with Anon that you need to cut some of the unnecessary phrases, but if the phrasing adds voice, then you should keep it.

All in all, I think this is much improved. It's clear, concise, and does a fantastic job of enticing me to the story without letting me know what happens. Best of luck with querying!