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ONCE IN A BLUE MOON (mid-grade fantasy)


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#1 K_Stickrath

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    My first Middle-Grade Fantasy Book for Advanced, Independent Readers, FUNNY-FOOT & THE WOON OF BINK is available on #Amazon.

    My second compilation of poetry A WORDCROW'S FRETWORK" is available on #Amazon.


    My first book "HUM A FEW BARS...": A COMPILATION OF SHORT STORIES AND POETRY is available on #Amazon.

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    I have had several poems published in my hometown newspaper.

    I have also been published on Poetry.com, with my poem, "A Haunting of Daffodils"

    My work has also appeared in THE BLUE DIAMOND MYSTERY: A ROUND ROBIN EXPERIMENT and DESTINATION, OHIO --> also available on Amazon.com

Posted 28 February 2011 - 01:12 PM

Once upon a time, there was nothing special about Joey Smith... and nobody knew that better than Joey Smith. He was straw-scrawny and terribly shy, and had he’d spent his whole life being sluffed around like a mismatched sock.

When stern old Aunt Martha decided to take charge of him, Joey just knew that the rest of his life would stretch out as dry and stark as the rows of her never-ending garden. Nobody cared about him, and as for Joey Smith, he simply cared too much. -- about poor blind Uncle Will, about how poor they were, about fitting in with the fellows in town,...but most importantly, he worried about the fragile, little girl at the crossroads -- the one with the twisted legs who would never truly be well...

And then one day, an honest-to-goodness, real-life Fairy Princess fluttered into his life, and sad, scrawny Joey Smith begins to bloom in the light of a very special friendship...the kind that only comes along . . . ONCE IN A BLUE MOON.

ONCE IN A BLUE MOON (a mid-grade fantasy with 40, 857 words) is a story about belonging, about how people grow when someone shows them love and attention. ONCE IN A BLUE MOON is based on the original stories of my great-grandfather, a man who viewed children as magical wonderful creatures capable of great things -- provided they had the chance to try ... and a little help along the way.

Thank you for your time and kind consideration.

Sincerely,

Kimberly C. Stickrath
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http://ksofficialaut...e.blogspot.com/

*Please note: I may be submitting this piece to multiple agencies

#2 rcolonel

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 01:23 PM

I really like this! Maybe because I have children at home who I adore and sometimes look at like the magical, wonderful creatures that your grandfather described them as.

You need an opening hook. Something like, "Nobody knew better than scrawny and shy Joey Smith that he wasn't special except for the crippled girl down the road and the fairy princess that just fluttered into his life."

I'm really interested in this character. You need that engaging, opening one sentence hook though.

I look forward to seeing your revision.

#3 Lori Sjoberg

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 04:14 PM

Once upon a time, there was nothing special about Joey Smith... and nobody knew that better than Joey Smith. He was straw-scrawny and terribly shy, and had he’d spent his whole life being sluffed around like a mismatched sock.<You just told me there is nothing special about your story. Not a good way to hook an agent into reading more.

When stern old Aunt Martha decided to take charge of him, Joey just knew that the rest of his life would stretch out as dry and stark as the rows of her never-ending garden. Nobody cared about him, and as for Joey Smith, he simply cared too much. -- about poor blind Uncle Will, about how poor they were, about fitting in with the fellows in town,...but most importantly, he worried about the fragile, little girl at the crossroads -- the one with the twisted legs who would never truly be well...<This paragraph is almost all description, no plot. SHOW me what your story is about!

And then one day, an honest-to-goodness, real-life Fairy Princess fluttered into his life, and sad, scrawny Joey Smith begins to bloom in the light of a very special friendship...the kind that only comes along . . . ONCE IN A BLUE MOON.<Yes! Now we're getting somewhere.

ONCE IN A BLUE MOON (a mid-grade fantasy with 40, 857 words) is a story about belonging, about how people grow when someone shows them love and attention.<Don't tell us what your story is about - SHOW US in the body of your query! ONCE IN A BLUE MOON is based on the original stories of my great-grandfather, a man who viewed children as magical wonderful creatures capable of great things -- provided they had the chance to try ... and a little help along the way.

Thank you for your time and kind consideration.

Sincerely,

Kimberly C. Stickrath
phone
email
http://ksofficialaut...e.blogspot.com/

*Please note: I may be submitting this piece to multiple agencies


Good luck!

#4 FineMan

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 06:57 PM

Once upon a time, Yes I know there is a fairy coming, but mid grade is era of discovery and changes in the body and the mind. There was nothing special about Joey Smith... and nobody knew that better than Joey Smith. He was straw-scrawny and terribly shy, and had he’d spent his whole most of his life being sluffed (sloughed) around like a mismatched sock. slough is the preferred spelling, but shuffled I think might be a better choice, maybe shuffled around like an unwanted fruitcake.

When stern old Aunt Martha decided to take charge of him, Joey just knew that the rest of his life would stretch out as dry and stark as the rows of her never-ending garden. Nobody cared about him, and as for Joey Smith, he simply cared too much about, poor blind Uncle Will, about how poor they were, about fitting in with the fellows(guys? Boys?) in town,...but most importantly, he worried about the fragile, little girl at the crossroads -- the one with the twisted legs who would never truly be well,(well what?) healthy?

And then one day, an honest-to-goodness, real-life Fairy Princess fluttered into his life, and sad, scrawny Joey Smith begins to bloom in the light of a very special friendship. The kind that only comes along,ONCE IN A BLUE MOON. Lose the ......... Also, I would choose one or other Honest to Goodness or Real-life. Repetitive.

ONCE IN A BLUE MOON (a mid-grade fantasy with 40, 857 words) is a story about belonging, about how people grow when someone shows them love and attention. ONCE IN A BLUE MOON is based on the original stories of my great-grandfather, a man who viewed children as magical wonderful creatures capable of great things -- provided they had the chance to try ... and a little help along the way. <---To much, to soon. Where the tail comes from is not important, except to you. Work the growth aspect into the body of the query. Great start.
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#5 Linda S

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Posted 28 February 2011 - 10:00 PM

It seems you need a hook and I'm guessing that it should have something to do with the Fairy Princess. It might be easier for us to help you if we had some idea of what the Fairy Princess does to help him make his life better. Linda

#6 K_Stickrath

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  • Publishing Experience:Currently Available on #Amazon:

    My first Middle-Grade Fantasy Book for Advanced, Independent Readers, FUNNY-FOOT & THE WOON OF BINK is available on #Amazon.

    My second compilation of poetry A WORDCROW'S FRETWORK" is available on #Amazon.


    My first book "HUM A FEW BARS...": A COMPILATION OF SHORT STORIES AND POETRY is available on #Amazon.

    ----

    I have had several poems published in my hometown newspaper.

    I have also been published on Poetry.com, with my poem, "A Haunting of Daffodils"

    My work has also appeared in THE BLUE DIAMOND MYSTERY: A ROUND ROBIN EXPERIMENT and DESTINATION, OHIO --> also available on Amazon.com

Posted 01 March 2011 - 10:20 AM

It seems you need a hook and I'm guessing that it should have something to do with the Fairy Princess. It might be easier for us to help you if we had some idea of what the Fairy Princess does to help him make his life better. Linda


Not certain how to hook properly with this one.

It's a quiet gentle story...mostly about how changing one's perspective can help change one's life. Joey's mother died when he was born, his father died soon after...but not before he and Joey's Uncle Will were involved in a a fight that accidently blinded Will. The next person to take him on had so many kids of her own that she barely noticed he was there, then Aunt Martha (Will's wife) comes into the picture, saying she'll take Joey out of her duty to her dead sister, but she seems to have a low opinion of Joey, claiming that he's got "no shine, no glow" and "not an ounce of ginger or gumption." Joey's so used to making himself small and unnoticable to stay out of everyone's way, that he has a hard time getting over his shyness -- he considers himself "boy furniture", something everybody else either steps around or forgets about. When he gets excited or nervous, he trips over his words, and that only increases his shyness, and so he turns inward. He doesn't know how to stand up for himself, he can't see anyway to make things better, and get people to pay attention to him than to runaway -- with the hopes that when he grows up and does great things, that the people he cares the most about will finally be impressed enough to care about him.

But Joey's main problem isn't that people don't care for him...

He's trying to find a place to belong and a way to shine on his own, but he also needs a change of perspective...and the fairies, particularly the very practical Bluet (the princess) provide a more objective point of view. Bluet sees that Joey really can be brave when he needs to be, and really has a good heart -- and that's what gets her attention, and makes her decide to intervene with his running away plans. The first thing she does is have a heart-to-heart with Joey...explaining for example, that maybe Aunt Martha's all sour and grim because the man she loves is hurting and she can't help him...and that maybe Aunt Martha knows how Joey's been hurt in his life, but can't find a way to talk to him to help either. It changes the way Joey thinks about Aunt Martha, and it makes him think that if he was wrong about her, maybe he was wrong about everyone, and maybe he should give them all a second chance.

The fairies take it on themselves to help Joey improve his life in little ways. They teach him boxing and baseball, and just give him the chance to show them what he can do. With each acheivement, his confidence grows. He comes out of his shell, learns to stick up for himself, and his relationships with those around him --the people at the crossroads (where he lives) -- begin to change for the better.

In return, he helps the fairies defeat the evil Gonkinees and discovers the secret to both Bluet's happiness, and eventually, his own.

#7 Linda S

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Posted 01 March 2011 - 12:08 PM

He's trying to find a place to belong and a way to shine on his own, but he also needs a change of perspective...and the fairies, particularly the very practical Bluet (the princess) provide a more objective point of view.

Ok. Now we are getting somewhere.

The fairies take it on themselves to help Joey improve his life in little ways. They teach him boxing and baseball, and just give him the chance to show them what he can do. With each acheivement, his confidence grows. He comes out of his shell, learns to stick up for himself, and his relationships with those around him --the people at the crossroads (where he lives) -- begin to change for the better.

How did the fairies come into the picture? Why did they show themselves to him?


In return, he helps the fairies defeat the evil Gonkinees and discovers the secret to both Bluet's happiness, and eventually, his own.

With a little work, I think this is where you need to end your query. You likely need to state or hint at what the conflict is between the fairies and the Gonkinees, probably when you introduce the fairies.

I like your story concept. Linda

#8 K_Stickrath

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    My first Middle-Grade Fantasy Book for Advanced, Independent Readers, FUNNY-FOOT & THE WOON OF BINK is available on #Amazon.

    My second compilation of poetry A WORDCROW'S FRETWORK" is available on #Amazon.


    My first book "HUM A FEW BARS...": A COMPILATION OF SHORT STORIES AND POETRY is available on #Amazon.

    ----

    I have had several poems published in my hometown newspaper.

    I have also been published on Poetry.com, with my poem, "A Haunting of Daffodils"

    My work has also appeared in THE BLUE DIAMOND MYSTERY: A ROUND ROBIN EXPERIMENT and DESTINATION, OHIO --> also available on Amazon.com

Posted 02 March 2011 - 02:29 PM

Sometimes, the most magical gift is simply the ability to look at things in a different light.

Straw-scrawny and terribly shy, Joey Smith was used to being ignored. He’d been shuffled from one relative to the next ever since his parents had died. Then sour old Aunt Martha takes him in, and poor Joey starts getting all the wrong kind of attention. Aunt Martha states that he has “no shine, no glow" and "not an ounce of ginger or gumption’." Mr. Sharp, their neighbor, is a man with a wit and tongue as sharp as his name, and Joey’s too skittish to talk to him; and the boys in town have decided that little Joey makes the ideal punching bag. Meanwhile, Joey’s heart hurts with burdens too big for him to carry. He’s frets about how poor they are; he’s concerned for blind Uncle Will who’s wasting away to a shadow of sadness; but most of all he fears for the life of the fragile, beautiful girl at the crossroads – the one with the twisted legs who may never truly be well.

A frustrated Joey decides the only thing he can do is run away, but what he doesn’t know is that an honest-to-goodness fairy has taken an interest in him. The ever practical Bluet halts him in his tracks by asking him to reconsider why the people around him act the way they do, and she convinces him to give them all a second chance. The fairies help Joey improve his life in little ways, by teaching him boxing and baseball, and his confidence grows. He comes out of his shell, learns to stick up for himself, and his relationships with those around him improve. Soon, it is apparent that Joey’s ability to look at things from a different perspective holds the key to Bluet’s personal happiness, for he is the only one who can solve a riddling-prophecy that keeps Bluet from marrying her true love.

ONCE IN A BLUE MOON (a mid-grade fantasy with 40, 857 words) is a story about belonging, about how people grow when someone believes in them. ONCE IN A BLUE MOON is based on the original stories of my great-grandfather, a man who viewed children as magical wonderful creatures capable of great things -- provided they had the chance to try ... and a little help along the way.

Thank you for your time and kind consideration.

Sincerely,

Kimberly C. Stickrath
phone
email
http://ksofficialaut...e.blogspot.com/

*Please note: I may be submitting this piece to multiple agencies




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