Jun 3, 2009

Query: A DARKER DAWN (Revisited)

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

Dear Mr. / Ms. Agent,

When four childhood friends accidentally kill a school bully, they make a pact of silence – never meet each other again and never talk about the bully’s death, but someone knows their secret, and decades later the four friends confront their past one final time.

In a small town of India, with a violent history of religious tensions, twelve year old best friends Dev, Avi, Anita and Jeet are growing up like grass on a sidewalk – neglected and uncared for by their families. They are bullied relentlessly by older boys and abused by a teacher in the school. When a bomb explodes in front of a mosque, a bloody riot erupts in the market and the four friends are trapped. Tormented by the carnage they witness, their rage at the bullying Bappa, who assaults them, turns fatal.

They go their separate ways and over their unfulfilled lives, the memory of the bully’s death grows stronger, like a festering wound. Twenty years later, an unknown man sends them a message – it’s time for atonement. They return to the town as strangers to each other, blaming their childhood friendship, wishing they had never met. When Avi is assaulted and beaten near death, they know the old hatreds are still alive in the town. The four friends have nothing but their forgotten friendship to save themselves.

My 84,000 word literary fiction, A DARKER DAWN, explores how one terrible mistake can destroy many lives, and how friendship survives when all other relationships fade.

Kind regards
Rohit Gore

- I don't have any pub credits worth mentioning :-(. So not so sure about what to mention in the bio
- Just a question Does the query seem too 'set-up'ish?
- Be absolutely brutal!

Query - HOLLOW SOULS (revisited)

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

Note: I really appreciate all the advice that I received for my first query attempt. I've tweaked it a bit (based on your suggestions) and humbly ask you if this is an improvement or not... I didn't change the word count issue (as the novel still needs to be edited), and I wonder if I should mention the targeted audience. Please let me know what you think. Thanks again!


Dear Mr./Ms. Agent:

Following the worst day of Olivia Marconi’s young life, her mother, Devi, soothes her with a unique bedtime tale, the first of many about Ruby Hollow – a secret, subterranean haven in southern Kentucky that unites families from all cultures and persuasions, supports innovation while preserving old-fashioned ideals, and enables lost souls to find solace and purpose. Despite Devi’s evident passion for this made-up utopia, she remains disillusioned about her life as a middle-class housewife and mother in 1970s-era New Orleans.

Years later, Olivia, now a teenaged artist, has wearied of her mother’s inexplicable depression, until she discovers a cache of love letters from the “hero” of Devi’s bedtime tales, and suddenly realizes the Hollow is an actual place. Through these illuminating pages, she learns about the unexpected pregnancy that prevented her mother’s return to the strange underworld into which she’d stumbled as a child. Despite her doubts, Olivia confesses her find, yearning to know more about Devi’s long-lost home. But it isn’t until a road trip to Kentucky that Devi is finally able to introduce Olivia to the beloved cave-dwellers that once inspired her stories, and to the only place where she’s ever truly belonged...

Since growing up in New Orleans and studying film, literature, and creative writing at Northwestern University, I’ve held a variety of positions, from ecotourism journalist to travel guide author – with publishing credits that include MOON MICHIGAN(Avalon Travel, 2009). Once, on assignment in Kentucky, I toured the dark, twisting passages of Mammoth Cave, which eventually sparked HOLLOW SOULS, my first novel – a 150,000-word literary/mainstream saga that proves it’s never too late to find one’s place in the world.

For more information, please visit my website: www.rubyhollow.com. If you would like to view the complete manuscript, please contact me via the email address, phone number, or mailing address listed above. I’ve enclosed a synopsis and the first five pages of HOLLOW SOULS, plus an SASE for your convenience. Thank you for considering the possibility of representing my work.

Laura Martone