Jan 26, 2011

Query - Drego's Sword

Dear (agent)

How much is too violent? When is it justified? Drego finds himself beginning to confront these questions when he is thrust into a quest he had never expected: to gather the three magic gems throughout his home of Faires and to use them to stop dictator Gordar and his deadly assassin, Skulta.

It begins the night of Drego’s fifteenth birthday when he finds a single gem on the coast. A woman named Laurina visits him that night, telling him that he’s meant to rebalance good and evil and that he needed to leave home to gain experience. Storing the gem in his sword’s hilt, and thus infusing his sword with magic, Drego does as she says. For two years he gains experience as a warrior.

But then Gordar kills the previous king and ascends to the throne, making war on other countries and sending Skulta after the remaining two gems. Drego befriends opinionated Toey, optimistic Tak, and Allendra who has a wanderlust, as they set out to get the other two gems. The first they find in the catacombs, the other near the peak of a volcano. However, Skulta gets the last one first, forcing them to head for Gordar’s castle and a likely trap.

On the way, Allendra is trained how to fight and she and Drego’s friendship began to deepen into something more. Tak is sold as a slave into the gold mines. After his rescue, they hear word of an army heading to Gordar’s castle to take it.

They join, and Drego sneaks alone into the castle, kills Gordar and Skulta, and retrieves the final gem. Drego is in awe at his own skill in the art of battle, and questions his mixture of brutality and playfulness when he fights. All three gems in his sword hilt give him tremendous power. Laurina congratulates him, but warns him that there is more serious evil that he will soon have to face.

Drego's Sword is a medieval fantasy that is 94, 499 words in length. It is the first book in a series. Although the content in this first installment is not too harsh, this is a young adult series.

(brief bio)
Thank you for your time and consideration.


Natty B said...

This reminds me the video game Zelda, which could be a good thing if you truly have made this your own world. But if it is too much like the game and an agent knows that, it could be problematic. Have you played Zelda before?

A couple of things:

94, 499 words- just say 94,000 or 94,500. You don't have to give an exact word count.

The length is a bit too long. I'd try to shorten it by a paragraph.

Your opening paragraph kind of threw me off. I personally don't like starting with questions unless they're very specific.
How much is too violent? -I had to keep reading to figure out what you meant by that.

Here's a revise of your first paragraph. I've chopped some words out to make it flow better. Hope it helps and good luck!

Fifteen-year old Drego confronts violence for the first time when he embarks on a dangerous quest: to gather three Fairy gems and stop dictator Gordar and his deadly assassin, Skulta, from taking over his home.

Anonymous Author said...

What N. Blank said. I see lots of ways you can cut words here. (May be true in your manuscript too.)

Although the content in this first installment is not too harsh, this is a young adult series.

I don't understand this line at all.

Shelley Sly said...

As a huge Zelda fan, I see where N. Blank is coming from. This immediately made me think of the Zelda series.

It sounds like your story could be really epic, which is awesome. I think a shorter, more to-the-point query could help bring out that epic story.

Remember that you want to focus on your main character's conflict and the stakes at hand. Details about Drego's friends and love interests aren't needed in this query. I'd focus on the pursuit of the gems and Gordar.

Queries don't give away the ending though, so if the big resolution is that Drego obtains all three gems, I'd leave that out. Let your query stop at a point that agents will want to read more to find out what happens.

Best of luck with this book!

Ashley said...

Thanks for the feedback! I've revised it and will post the new one!

Wow, yes, I'm actually a huge Zelda fan. It was Zelda and Lord of the Rings that made me fall in love with epic/medieval fantasy.