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Monday, September 16, 2013

Workshop #11 Fade Into Me

Revision 1 (I fizzled out at the end. Help! And does this give away to much at the beginning? Also, the story really is about the romance. Everything else complicates the romance. It is the only real goal. Convince the girl to marry or nothing else will go as planned. )

Dear Agent/Editor,

A year after Ryanne Killian’s parents ran off to “find themselves”, her best friend held her down while two of his teammates beat and raped her in a drunken role play. Betrayed and emotionally broken, she’s vowed to never let anyone into her heart again. However, on the day of high school graduation, a stream of magic only she can see, calls her to the botanical gardens on the UNC-C campus. Straight into the arms of her soul mate. She can feel it, but can she trust it?

Caedmon Frey is the Abhithian heir during the year of Reparation. His alien race has lived on the earth longer than humans, but they are being punished by the home world for disobeying the laws of creation. He must marry a human girl by the Day of Reparation in the hopes that she will be able to feel and use magic. Only then will his people be free to ascend to the home planet once more.

For one brief moment Caedmon literally held the fate of two worlds in his arms. When Ryanne flees from his embrace, he wonders if he will ever convince her to marry him.

Ryanne's scars run as deep as her walls are high. In the end she’ll have to find her own inner strength and self worth if she's going to save herself and set Caedmon’s people free.

FADE INTO ME is a modern day YA Fantasy set in Charlotte, NC. It all started with a walk through the botanical gardens where I know faeries play day and night.

Thanks for your time and consideration,

Original
Dear Agent/Editor,

Ryanne Killian's life has taught her that true love doesn't exist. Neither do happy endings. And yet, on the day of her high school graduation, a strange force calls her to the botanical gardens on the UNC-C campus. Straight into the arms of her soul mate. She can feel it, but she'll never trust it.

For a brief moment, Caedmon Frey literally held the fate of two worlds in his arms. As she runs away he wonders if convincing the right human to marry him will take more time than the Abhithian High Council gave him.

Ryanne's scars run deep and the source of her nightmares is never far away. When they return, Caedmon can only hope he's done enough to convince her she's strong enough to save herself. And his people.

FADE INTO ME is a modern day YA Fantasy set in part in Charlotte, NC. It all started with a walk through the botanical gardens where I know faeries play day and night. It is half finished at 35,000.

Thanks for your time and consideration,

14 comments:

Huntress, aka CD Coffelt said...

I’d ditch ‘strange force’ but not a lot more.
I see this as a good teaser, a query that makes me want to know more. Good one!

Martha Mayberry said...

For me, this creates many questions but you’re vague about answering them.

I think it would be helpful to have more specific details about why Ryanne doesn’t trust anyone, what the scars/nightmares are, who/what she is, who/what Caedmon is, and what exactly Ryanne needs to do to save herself and Caedmon’s people.

I hope this helps; best of luck with it!

L. Blankenship said...

Romance writers beat this into me: the romance is a complicating factor, not the main story.

So tell me what the romance is making complicated. Why does Ryanne need to save herself and Caedmon's people?

storymultiverse said...

I agree that I'd like a little more detail about why she's so untrusting. It would help us get to know the MC.

I would also like a little bit more about Caedmon, his world, and motivations - but of course, I recognize that you want to keep things brief as well.

Liz A. said...

That first paragraph bothers me. I'm not sure why. When I try to analyze it, it sounds fine. But on first read, I had trouble "hearing" it.

Sounds like an interesting story, though.

Liz Blocker said...

Totally small and picky note: wait until it's finished to query agents/publishers. That's a note I see from them on interviews/blogs/etc all the time. If you're planning on doing that already, and are just way ahead of the game, ignore this comment (and also, I REALLY admire your organizational skills).

Beyond that, I like that you raise a lot of questions that you don't answer. It makes me want to read more! I don't think you need to add much at all.

I do find the second paragraph a little confusing. After I read it a couple of times, I understood that the "fate" was Ryanne, and that the "she" was also Ryanne. But it did take me a little while. Can you clean up the wording to clarify? Something like, "For the brief moment Ryanne was close to him, Caedmon Frey literally held the fate of two worlds in his arms."

That's not great, but that's the general idea.

Charity Bradford said...

Thanks all! Working on a revision now. And don't worry Liz Blocker. I don't plan on querying this until its been finished and through several crit partners.

I find that trying to pin down the important things for the query helps me focus during the actual writing. :)

Tiffanie Lynn said...

From "It is half finished at 35,000" it makes it sound like you plan on querying now. Don't. It will be an instant rejection.

I get confused in the second paragraph:

For a brief moment, Caedmon Frey literally held the fate of two worlds in his arms (Was it a crystal ball or something? Oh, do you mean Ryanne...?). As she runs away (She? I thought he was a guy...Then this thought leads to the above "Oh, do you mean Ryanne...?") he wonders if convincing the right human to marry him will take more time than the Abhithian High Council gave him (Why?).

I agree with this: the romance is a complicating factor, not the main story. You have it as the main story. Change it. What's the true story?

Charity Bradford said...

Just another quick note to say the story REALLY is about the romance. He MUST convince her to love him, marry him, or his people lose all hope of ascending to the home world for another 1000 years. That's when the next Reparation will occur.

Martha Mayberry said...

I think this is much clearer. Great job! In the first paragraph you could probably streamline the first few sentences and take out the specific rape details with something like this:

After she's brutally raped by her best friend, Ryanne vows to never let anyone into her heart again. A stream of music only she can hear calls her to the botanical gardens on the UNC-C campus. Straight . . .

Hope this helps!

Kristin Smith said...

This one is so much better! I love that you give us details about the characters. It makes me care about them and understand their plight.

I love the phrase: "Ryanne's scars run as deep as her walls are high."

I did have one question: You mention that "for one brief moment Caedmon literally held the fate of two worlds in his arms"...I understand the fate of his world, but not for the human world. Did I miss something? Is there a consequence for the human world if he can't convince Ryanne to marry him? I really like the phrase you use, but I'm just trying to wrap my mind around it.

I really do think this is a great query!

Huntress, aka CD Coffelt said...

whoa. imeanwhoa

I did not know that about Ryanne. This became a darker story than I remember. Possibly a NA rather than YA.

Good query revision. Consider changing your target audience.

Liz Blocker said...

Ok, so you added a lot more and now it's even MORE intriguing, so ignore my first comment!!! Great revision.

So yes, the romance is the story - but given this query, I'd say it's PART of the story. You also have an alien race in serious trouble and a girl with a terrible trauma in her past, trying to heal. You did a great job here of letting us know those parts of the story, which I think fulfills the other critiques about not putting too much emphasis on the romance. I don't think this peters out, BTW. I like it.

I agree with Martha - you can cut down for better impact:

A year after Ryanne Killian’s parents ran off to “find themselves”, her best friend helped his teammates rape her. Betrayed and broken, she’s vowed to never let anyone into her heart again. However, on the day of high school graduation, a stream of magic calls her to the botanical gardens on the UNC-C campus. Straight into the arms of her soul mate. She can feel it, but can she trust it?

Caedmon Frey's alien race has lived on the earth longer than humans, but they are being punished by their home world for disobeying the laws of creation. If he wants to save his people, he must marry a human girl by the Day of Reparation [how much time does that give him? Give us an idea of stakes here.]

Charity Bradford said...

Thanks everyone. Sorry about my snarkiness. I wrote my last comment when I was too tired to be smart. :)

After I went to bed I realized that L and Liz are both right. The romance is the vehicle for saving Caedmon's people.

I'll try and post another revision tonight.