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What Lurks Beneath the Bleachers (YA paranormal) (newest in #39)


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#1 KitCampbell

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Posted 03 January 2017 - 11:52 PM

Hello!

 

Let me have it. I can take it. ::cringes::

 

------

 

17-year-old Sara doesn't have time for the paranormal. She's got to live up to her parents' expectations, not look like an idiot in front of her crush, and avoid attracting the attention of her archnemesis Cecily Roberts.

 

Not that the paranormal cares what she thinks. Sara's best friend Ali complains of threatening whispers haunting her in the library. Cecily's suddenly in possession of a large, wrong-feeling book that seems to be possessing her. And there are hints of a redheaded girl around the school, but she's never there when you look straight on.

 

When Ali disappears into thin air, the only hint of her existence the disturbing letters still arriving in her and Sara's shared locker, Sara's forced to turn to Cecily for help. The story Cecily spins is hard to believe, but if the paranormal feels the need to force itself into Sara's life, then for the love of all that is good and holy, Sara's going to make it pay.

 

Her best friend—and potentially the whole school—is depending on her.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, redemption, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.

 

(NEWEST IN REPLY #39)

 

------

 

Thank you in advance for your help!



#2 MonaLon

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 12:02 AM

17-year-old Sara doesn't have time for the paranormal. She's got to live up to her parents' expectations, not look like an idiot in front of her crush, and avoid attracting the attention of her archnemesis Cecily Roberts. Though this isn't too bad I feel like it could be better. The hook should give me something to latch onto and carry me into what's going on. At least you start with your protagonist, that's always a good sign. But I'd recommend telling us more about her situation than just that she doesn't have time for the paranormal. It seems vague.

 

Not that the paranormal cares what she thinks. Sara's best friend Ali complains of threatening whispers haunting her in the library. Cecily's suddenly in possession of a large, wrong-feeling book that seems to be possessing her. And there are hints of a redheaded girl around the school, but she's never there when you look straight on. These are all weird things but is Sara's goal specifically just to maintain a normal life? How does she react to these things around her, and how do they directly affect her story?

 

When Ali disappears into thin air, the only hint of her existence the disturbing letters still arriving in her and Sara's shared locker, Sara's forced to turn to Cecily for help. I feel like this is more of the triggering event and the other stuff kind of builds towards this. I'd try to center your query around this, why Sara got here, and what she's gonna do about it. The story Cecily spins is hard to believe, but if the paranormal feels the need to force itself into Sara's life, then for the love of all that is good and holy, Sara's going to make it pay. See this is where we get to the action! Sara's trying to do something here.

 

Her best friend—and potentially the whole school—is depending on her. And there are the stakes too! But I'd like them to be a little more specific. What happens to the school and her best friend if she fails? Do they all become possessed, or disappear, or what?

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, redemption, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. <-- I made the same mistake in an earlier draft of my query. I'd recommend leaving out themes that your book addresses since these are things that should become apparent as the agent reads the manuscript. What if the agent disagrees with you and doesn't think the book is about redemption at all? I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.

 

Hey there! I think your main issue here is starting this query too early. We should be jumping right into your plot, your triggering event. What makes your character jump into action. Then the query should tell us why you character has to do this, what she's trying to do, and what's holding her back. If you can rewrite this with those goals in mind (conflict, stakes, and goal of the protagonist), then this could work very well! Good luck. Also, I'd love it if you could take a look at my query as well: http://agentquerycon...osnter-fantasy/



#3 Testome

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 12:36 AM



Hello!

 

Let me have it. I can take it. ::cringes::

 

------

 

17-year-old Sara doesn't have time for the paranormal. She's got to live up to her parents' expectations, not look like an idiot in front of her crush, and avoid attracting the attention of her archnemesis Cecily Roberts.This isn't really hook(it's too vague), and this makes me think of pranormal romance.

 

Not that the paranormal cares what she thinks. Sara's best friend Ali complains of threatening whispers haunting her in the library. Cecily's suddenly in possession of a large, wrong-feeling book that seems to be possessing her. And there are hints of a redheaded girl around the school, but she's never there when you look straight on.

 

When Ali disappears into thin air, the only hint of her existence the disturbing letters still arriving in her and Sara's shared locker, Sara's forced to turn to Cecily for help. Does she want to save her firend?The story Cecily spins is hard to believevague., but if the paranormal feels the need to force itself into Sara's life, then for the love of all that is good and holy, Sara's going to make it pay.vague

 

Her best friend—and potentially the whole school—is depending on her. How they depending on her?

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, redemption, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request. Serves no purpose.

 

 

 

------

 

Thank you in advance for your help!

I agree with the above poster.  What does she want? (I can guess, but you don't want a agent to put in extra work.) What gets in her way?(I can guess, but it's vague), What happens when she fails?(Again vague, but I can guess.).  Overall, though, the vagueness is a major problem.  You're leaving the reader to fill in all the blanks and just saying paranormal I don't think is working very well. There is a difference between vague and mysterious, and this is really vague. 



#4 wildworks

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Posted 04 January 2017 - 01:08 PM

17-year-old Sara doesn't have time for the paranormal. She's got to live up to her parents' expectations, not look like an idiot in front of her crush, and avoid attracting the attention of her archnemesis Cecily Roberts. (While this isn’t supper catch, I have a clear image of the MC, and you set up Cecily for late, and I’m not bored.)

 

Not that the paranormal cares what she thinks. Sara's best friend Ali complains of threatening whispers haunting her in the library. Cecily's suddenly in possession of a large, wrong-feeling book that seems to be possessing her. And there are hints of a redheaded girl around the school, but she's never there when you look straight on. (These details are sorta vague, but if you get really specific, you’ll lose the mystery and the creepy factor.)

 

When Ali disappears into thin air, the only hint of her existence the disturbing letters still arriving in her and Sara's shared locker, Sara's forced to turn to Cecily for help. The story Cecily spins is hard to believe, but and if the paranormal feels the need to force itself into Sara's life, then for the love of all that is good and holy, Sara's going to make it pay. (Now I’m hooked. There’s not much better you can do than convince me the MC can and will kick ass.)

 

Her best friend—and potentially the whole school—is depending on her.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, redemption, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.

 

------

 

Thank you in advance for your help!

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I have to disagree with the above posters. This query is almost perfect (No query is perfect, including all the ones that have been accepted.)  It’s concise. It has a nice Stranger Things vibe going, but is different enough.  I have a bright image of the three characters you name, and while there isn’t a clear bad guy beyond the mystery book and the strange happenings, I think the mystery may overcome that. But it might improve the query a little if you clarify the bad guy just a bit.

 

Most importantly, you totally have the voice of a spunky high school cheerleader needed in this kind of book. And if you’re suspicious that I might be pandering, go check out other critiques I’ve done. It looks like I sacrificed goat while typing.

 

If I were an agent seeking paranormal YA, I’d be scrolling down to read your first pages and make my decision based on that.

 

Hope this help.

 

My query is below if you’re interested.



#5 KitCampbell

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Posted 07 January 2017 - 01:51 AM

All right! I tried to make it less vague, but I'm a bit worried that the voice has gotten eaten a bit.

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

They say the library ghost takes the living for its own.
 
17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker.
 
With limited time to save Ali's soul, if the stories are to be trusted, Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.
 
But if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and then the library ghost will be free to strike again.
 
WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.
 
~*~*~*~*~
 
Thanks!


#6 jessicav

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Posted 09 January 2017 - 05:51 PM

 

All right! I tried to make it less vague, but I'm a bit worried that the voice has gotten eaten a bit.

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

They say the library ghost takes the living for its own. (I like this, it sets the tone). 
 
17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air (into thin air is a bit of a cliche), Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. (oooh, spooky). 
 
With limited time to save Ali's soul, if the stories are to be trusted, (Nice touch) Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.
 
But if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and then the library ghost will be free to strike again.
 
WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.  Thank you for your time and consideration (based on the query advice of QueryShark). 
 
~*~*~*~*~
 
Thanks!

 

 

I like it, especially the few touches that set it apart like the notes and working with Cecily!

 

 

Also, I've revised my query based on your notes if you don't mind taking a second look. 



#7 nonstop

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 12:07 PM

Thanks for your feedback on my query, hope I can return the favour. 

 

 

All right! I tried to make it less vague, but I'm a bit worried that the voice has gotten eaten a bit.

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

They say the library ghost takes the living for its own.
 
17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. (I like these opening lines but I feel they could be a little bit tighter and more concise - more below). But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. (Nice couple of lines, they set up the mystery).
 
With limited time to save Ali's soul, if the stories are to be trusted, Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. (I feel like I want to put "if the stories are to be trusted" in brackets or dashes, just to make it more of an aside, but that might just be a personal thing.) The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, (remove comma here) and she'll do anything to get her back.
 
But if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and then the library ghost will be free to strike again.
 
WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request. Thank you for your time and consideration.
 
~*~*~*~*~
 
Thanks!

 

 

I think this is really good, possibly just needs a couple of touches here and there to neaten it up. I like the first line, but it's a bit jarring there on it's own with no context and doesn't tell us much about why it matters. Is Ali one of the people who say this about the ghost? Would it be possible to connect them? Something like: Ali says the library ghost takes the living for its own. But 17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about to put any stock in her best friend's ghost stories - her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts. That all changes when Ali disappears into thin air and Sara discovers those stories may be all too real etc...



I know it must be pretty tricky to strike a balance between keeping the mystery and being too vague but I think most of this works well. There are a couple of lines I liked from your previous drafts too - in particular "if the paranormal feels the need to force itself into Sara's life, then for the love of all that is good and holy, Sara's going to make it pay." It's hard to keep everything in, I know! But I think this is coming along well.



#8 Zach67

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 01:32 PM

They say the library ghost takes the living for its own. Captures attenion, but vague. Who is they? 
 
17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. Nice
 
With limited time to save Ali's soul Seems to come out of no where, if the stories are to be trusted, Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.
 
But if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and then the library ghost will be free to strike again.
 
WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.
 
I really like it. Just make it slightly less vague. It's very intriguing and I am already hooked.  
 

Please look at my queryhttp://agentquerycon...tion/?hl=eriana


My timeless miracle query: http://agentquerycon...ne/#entry337370

 

My timeless miracle synopsis: http://agentquerycon...meless +miracle

 

 


#9 jphollis

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 02:18 AM

 

All right! I tried to make it less vague, but I'm a bit worried that the voice has gotten eaten a bit.

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

They say the library ghost takes the living for its own. (I agree with others that starting with 'they' is a bit vague. Could you say 'Urban legend says..." instead?)
 
17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker.
 
With limited time to save Ali's soul, if the stories are to be trusted(Maybe reverse this so it's easier to understand: "If the stories are to be believed, she has limited time to save Ali's soul..." I like how your version looks and slips off the tongue, but this might be simpler to understand, if that makes sense), Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works (too vague and cliche, but not sure how to fix it), but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.
 
But if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and then the library ghost will be free to strike again.
 
WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request.
 
~*~*~*~*~
 
Thanks!

 

Much better than your original query. I don't think it lost your voice either. Let me know when you have a new draft up and I'll have a look. In the meantime, if you could have a look at my query here, that would be great.


My Synopsis: House of Ashes

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#10 dragoness

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 06:09 AM

I think the query is excellent!  :smile:

 

The main thing I would have changed is the hook. While your voice is humorous and your characters are lively, the hook sounds a little banal. How about something like:

17-year-old Sara wouldn't believe the library ghost takes the living for its own. Until it's too late. (or: Until it strikes.)
 
The second sentence is great. I would put "her inability to hold a conversation with her crush" before "her parents' expectations", because it's more spicy, has more voice, and separate her two social issues (of her crush and of her enemy).

 

I like your last sentence.

 

("I would be happy to send the manuscript upon request." can be deleted, it's obvious).

 

Good Luck!

 

I'd love to hear your opinion on my query: http://agentquerycon...ue/#entry332368



#11 KitCampbell

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 07:33 PM

Mostly tweaky. Hopefully pretty good to go?

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

Local legend says the library ghost takes the living for its own.

 

17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker.

 

With limited time to save Ali's soul—if the stories are to be trusted—Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.



#12 ltlibrarian

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 09:06 PM

Mostly tweaky. Hopefully pretty good to go?

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

Local legend says the library ghost takes the living for its own. - I would cut this because as a hook it doesn't say much. I think if you want to use this, you need to add more to it and make it more of a hook. Like start with that sentence and then smtg like "Cecily doesn't believe in that sort of thing, but when her best friend Ali disappears in the library, she may have to rethink her beliefs" smtg like that

 

17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. - honestly I think you should just start with this, this is super solid. It says everything that's important about the story and brings in the hook

 

With limited time to save Ali's soul—if the stories are to be trusted—Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I think the query is actually really good if you just cut that first line and the extra bit at the end of the query.

 

I will say that the title doesn't seem to fit the story at all, I was kind of thrown off by it. But I haven't read the whole story so maybe it's more relevant than it seems?? Just thought I would say so.

 

Good luck! and if you have time I would really appreciate if you take a look at my query, link in my signature


Looking for feedback on my query, will return the favour!

 

Website: http://ltlibrarian.com - book reviews, round-ups, quotes, writing tips, etc.

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#13 Rykter

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 10:01 PM

Thanks for your feedback Kit. I have posted an update utilizing your comments if you have a chance to look at it again. I hope I can be as helpful to you!

 

 

Local legend says the library ghost takes the living for its own. This hook doesn't grab me, not punchy enough. Also 'for it's own' is vague. What does that mean? Does it wear them around like full body masks? Does it force them to stay in the library and play checkers and have tea parties with it? Give us some idea here.

 

17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories.I like this. It is a lot at once, but I think it works. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. I would harken back to the previous sentence and suggest: But when Ali disappears into thin air, her ghost stories gain a little more credibility. (or something like that)  Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. nice.

 

With limited time to save Ali's soul—if the stories are to be trusted—Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. Whoa. Big jump here. Maybe: As Sara researches the ghost stories on her own, she learns that she has limited time to save Ali's soul. She also discovers that the only one who has any idea of what is going on and may be able to help her is Cecily Robert. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back. Long and doesn't say much. More to the point would be: But to save her best friend, she'll even bury the hatchet and work with her arch nemesis.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again. not bad, but it needs a bit more oomph. Especially since we don't know what this library ghost is capable of doing.  

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration. I love the title btw. But if it is a library ghost it is a bit confusing- harkens to it being in the gymnasium. Seems like a more fitting title would be WHAT LURKS BETWEEN THE STACKS or WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BOOKS. Anyway, I hope you find this helpful!



#14 KitCampbell

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 11:00 PM

Hm, there's a thought. It's referred to as the "library ghost" in the stories the kids tell each other, but it's not actually tied to the library in reality. I guess there's no reason to call it the library ghost in the query either--I just went there for consistency. But if it's confusing with the title, I should probably call it something else. Fairmont High ghost? Just school ghost?



#15 RosieSkye

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Posted 16 January 2017 - 11:31 PM

Mostly tweaky. Hopefully pretty good to go?

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

Local legend says the library ghost takes the living for its own. (I agree with the others that this hook doesn't really work.  It's too vague, and not punchy enough.)

 

17 Seventeen-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air (cliche), Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker. (I'd be more specific here - in what way are the letters disturbing?)

 

With limited time to save Ali's soul—if the stories are to be trusted—Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts. (Since Cecily is actually a major character in your story, I'd do more to introduce her when you mention her up front. Maybe detail how she makes life difficult for Sara or something. I'd also expand on why Cecily is important now... how does she know about the ghost, and why is she the only one Sara can turn to?) The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll Sara will do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. (Hmmm...it's best to keep this part tight, but I like the wry humor here...)  Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

 

I agree with changing the name of the ghost, mostly because "library ghost" sounds a little more MG than YA.

 

Hope this helps! 



#16 dragoness

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 02:52 AM

I think "the school ghost" is the best.



#17 jphollis

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Posted 17 January 2017 - 04:58 AM

Mostly tweaky. Hopefully pretty good to go?

 

~*~*~*~*~

 

Local legend says the library ghost takes the living for its own.

 

17-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker.

 

With limited time to save Ali's soul—if the stories are to be trusted—Sara is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on—Cecily Roberts (This sentence runs on a bit too long. Could you possibly break it into two. Maybe "If the stories are to be trusted, she has limited time to save Ali's soul. But the only one who seems to have any idea what's going on is Cecily Roberts"). The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her (This bit might be redundant. We arleady know they are best friends), and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry (I don't like starting this with "Because". Could you maybe just erase it or reword a bit?), there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Looking much better. My comments are only little nitpicks about really subjective things.


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#18 KitCampbell

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Posted 19 January 2017 - 11:24 AM

Okay! Trying again.

 

I also have questions.

1. I agree the "thin air" bit is cliche, but I am unsure how else to succinctly imply that Ali was there, and then wasn't. Just seemingly faded away sometime between third and fourth periods (Sara did not see this happen). So if anyone has a better way to say it, I would love to hear it.

2. As jphollis points out, the "Because" on the stakes paragraph is a little strange. I had "But" before but there's a "but" in the sentence above, and then the "but"s seemed a little too much. But the sentence doesn't seem to work without some sort of transition. I don't know. I think I'm going mad.

3. Now that I've been trolling around the query boards for a bit, I see it's normal to put in the query when a story is dual POV. Is this a hard and fast rule? Bleachers is dual POV, alternating between Sara and Ali, but that fact doesn't change the main conflict (obviously Ali is also upset about disappearing). If I don't make note, will agents be confused/surprised if the manuscript alternates?

 

I also added in some details about the letters--let me know if that's good or bad.

 

Again, thanks to everyone for looking at this and helping me out!

 

~*~*~*~*~*~

Fairmont has always had a high number of unsolved missing persons’ cases. Local legend says this is because the high school ghost takes the living for its own.

 

Seventeen-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker, warning against a redheaded girl.

 

If the stories are to be trusted, Sara only has limited time to save Ali’s soul. She is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on: Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works, but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost will be free to strike again.

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.



#19 Nonicks

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Posted 19 January 2017 - 11:37 AM

Okay! Trying again.

 

I also have questions.

1. I agree the "thin air" bit is cliche, but I am unsure how else to succinctly imply that Ali was there, and then wasn't. Just seemingly faded away sometime between third and fourth periods (Sara did not see this happen). So if anyone has a better way to say it, I would love to hear it.

2. As jphollis points out, the "Because" on the stakes paragraph is a little strange. I had "But" before but there's a "but" in the sentence above, and then the "but"s seemed a little too much. But the sentence doesn't seem to work without some sort of transition. I don't know. I think I'm going mad.

3. Now that I've been trolling around the query boards for a bit, I see it's normal to put in the query when a story is dual POV. Is this a hard and fast rule? Bleachers is dual POV, alternating between Sara and Ali, but that fact doesn't change the main conflict (obviously Ali is also upset about disappearing). If I don't make note, will agents be confused/surprised if the manuscript alternates?

 

I also added in some details about the letters--let me know if that's good or bad.

 

Again, thanks to everyone for looking at this and helping me out!

 

~*~*~*~*~*~

Fairmont has always had a high number of unsolved missing persons’ cases. Local legend says this is because the high school ghost takes the living for its own. (this is a bit vague. You don't introduce the MC, just say a vague sentence that can fit to any book. And because of this, it doesn't have that exciting effect you would've wanted it to have)

 

Seventeen-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. (your opening sentence is quite ordinary, nothing exciting or special. I would've started with your second sentence. Somebody disappeared - that's intriguing! Maybe you could say briefly that Sara doesn't believe in ghosts?) But when Ali disappears into thin air, Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker, warning against a redheaded girl. 

 

If the stories are to be trusted, Sara only has limited time to save Ali’s soul. She is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on: Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows about how the world works(and how does it work? That's a vague sentence), but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library(you didn't mention the library before :0 ) ghost will be free to strike again. 

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I think it's always good to say that your book has dual POV. This sounds really interesting. I think you just need to work a bit on your hook, but other than that, it's quite a solid query.

 

If you have time, please take a look at my latest revision. link



#20 Snowy

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Posted 19 January 2017 - 04:41 PM

Okay! Trying again.

 

I also have questions.

1. I agree the "thin air" bit is cliche, but I am unsure how else to succinctly imply that Ali was there, and then wasn't. Just seemingly faded away sometime between third and fourth periods (Sara did not see this happen). So if anyone has a better way to say it, I would love to hear it.

2. As jphollis points out, the "Because" on the stakes paragraph is a little strange. I had "But" before but there's a "but" in the sentence above, and then the "but"s seemed a little too much. But the sentence doesn't seem to work without some sort of transition. I don't know. I think I'm going mad.

3. Now that I've been trolling around the query boards for a bit, I see it's normal to put in the query when a story is dual POV. Is this a hard and fast rule? Bleachers is dual POV, alternating between Sara and Ali, but that fact doesn't change the main conflict (obviously Ali is also upset about disappearing). If I don't make note, will agents be confused/surprised if the manuscript alternates?

 

I also added in some details about the letters--let me know if that's good or bad.

 

Again, thanks to everyone for looking at this and helping me out!

 

~*~*~*~*~*~

Fairmont has always had a high number of unsolved missing persons’ cases. Local legend says this is because the high school ghost takes the living for its own.

 

Seventeen-year-old Sara has too much to worry about—her parents' expectations, her inability to hold a conversation with her crush, and avoiding her archnemesis Cecily Roberts—to put any stock in her best friend Ali's ghost stories. But when Ali disappears into thin air, (Is there one second, gone the next? That's the only other way I can think to say this off the top of my head.)  Sara discovers those stories may be all too real. Especially since she continues to receive disturbing letters from Ali in their shared locker, warning against a redheaded girl.

 

If the stories are to be trusted, Sara only has limited time to save Ali’s soul. She is forced to turn to the only person who seems to have any idea what's going on: Cecily Roberts. The story Cecily spins goes against everything Sara knows thought about how the world works, (how does the world work?) but Ali's always been there for her, and she'll do anything to get her back.

 

Because if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left of Ali to save—and the library ghost (this is the first time you mention the library ghost, so I don't know what this means) will be free to strike again. (Since the but/because was bothering you maybe-- Time is running out and if she doesn't hurry, there will be nothing left  of Ali to save?)

 

WHAT LURKS BENEATH THE BLEACHERS is an 89,000 word YA paranormal novel which focuses on friendship, forgiveness, and why it's bad to pick up creepy books. Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Thank you for critiquing mine, I hope this helps!






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