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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Workshop #19 Juniper

When an army of vampires threatens to march into town ready to kill, 482-year-old Nathaniel Perkins wonders if he should just pretend this isn't his problem.

Juniper isn't his hometown and Nathaniel has lived long enough and been betrayed a few times too much to understand people can't be trusted. He’ll stick his neck out, just to get hunted down for being a bloodsucker. Besides, Juniper isn't vampire friendly and 17-year-old spitfire Elizabeth Wright knows his secret. Armed with a deadly wooden stake, she already made sure Nathaniel understood he isn't welcome in her town.

Yeah, he should just let the destructive vampires take it over.

That's when Nathaniel learns his beloved teenage and immortal sister, Anne, has other plans. She is dead set on staying in Juniper and fighting. By her side is Elizabeth, an ally Anne gained by demonstrating concern over human life. Since his sister is willing to save as many people as she can, even at the cost of her own dead heart, Nathaniel needs to pick a side. He can either join his sister and Elizabeth to fight for a cause that might get him killed, even if he is on the winning team. Or he can force Anne out of town at the risk of losing her anyways. He knows there is something even his good-hearted sister won't forgive and that is betrayal.

Told from Elizabeth and Nathaniel’s POV, JUNIPER is a YA fantasy completed at 99,000 words.

8 comments:

Patchi said...

I really like this. It has voice, character and stakes (pun intended). I found some minor things to edit:

>Nathaniel has lived long enough[,] and been betrayed a few times too [many,]

I think there is something wrong with the verb tenses:
>she already made sure Nathaniel understood

>he should just let the destructive vampires take []over

I love this phrase:
>even at the cost of her own dead heart

I think you can shorten this:
>[Joining] his sister and Elizabeth[] might get him killed, even if he is on the winning team.

Good luck with this!

Raluca Balasa said...

I was wondering why Nathaniel and his sister can help save the town. I mean, they're only 2 vampires against an entire army of vampires. It seems like pretty crappy odds, so if I were him, the choice would be easy: don't fight because these people hate you anyways, AND there's not much you can do even if you do join them. Maybe clarify why exactly these people need him (even if they don't want him).

Also, how is Elizabeth important plot-wise?

Love the voice here! I'm not into vampires, but this sounds like something I would read. Good luck!

Huntress, aka CD Coffelt said...

I like this one story!
The query needs a little work though.

First paragraph: My personal preference is to avoid sentences like ‘...wonders if he should just pretend...’ Probably my hang up though.

I’d cut ‘ready to kill’ because it looks like the army is ready to kill Nathaniel, IMO.

Second paragraph: I like that Juniper isn't Nathaniel’s hometown. A lot said with very few words! But the sentence gets clunky after that.
Suggestion: Juniper isn't his hometown and Nathaniel has lived long enough to know betrayal. People can’t be trusted. Especially since Juniper isn’t vampire-friendly, and 17-year-old spitfire Elizabeth Wright knows his secret. Armed with a deadly wooden stake, she made sure he understands (note tense) that he isn't welcome in her town.

This sentence: "By her side is Elizabeth, an ally Anne gained by demonstrating concern over human life." Can you re-phrase this? It is very important but the structure is a bit clunky.

I must say that I don't understand the need to give who's POV the novel is in. I've seen it before in other submissions. *scratching my head*
It's a new one.

Renée A. Price said...

Thank you so much for all the help!

Patchi - Oops! Thanks for pointing out those mistakes! I like your suggestion to shorten that sentence.

Raluca - Nathaniel and Anne are (almost) 500-year-old vampires, so they are really strong. They stand a good chance against the army, because those are young vampires. I wonder if I should include that explanation. Plus, Elizabeth is a "secret weapon". Halfway through the book, Elizabeth learns she was born a vampire hunter.

Huntress: Yup, Nathaniel is one of the targets, but not the only one. I really like your suggestion for the second paragraph.
I've also seen other queries that included the POV information and I believe it's relevant. But if it's a problem, I might have to think about changing it.

mshatch said...

I think the second paragraph needs some smoothing over. One thing does not logically lead to the next, imo.

Huntress, aka CD Coffelt said...

@Renee Don't sweat my questioning pov info. I just haven't seen it before this week. No worries

Tiffanie Lynn said...

Hey, I've seen this query before!

-Shouldn't it be, "When an army of vampires threaten..."?

-"...it isn't his..." instead of "this"

-This (Juniper isn't his hometown and Nathaniel has lived long enough and been betrayed a few times too much to understand people can't be trusted) is a mouthful.

-There are some tense problems throughout, but most were already mentioned

-Turn things like, "She is..." to "She's..."

That's all I can think of. Good luck.

Renée A. Price said...

mshatch and Tiffanie: thanks!

Tiffanie, you've seen this query here, right? This is the only place I posted it.

This experience has been incredibly helpful!