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I have developed a new language. Should it be in the query?


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#1 punitrastogi

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Posted 03 March 2017 - 04:39 AM

So my YA/fantasy series needed me to develop a couple of languages.

 

I have to still refine and fine-tune it, but I think this can be a good USP for my book as not many of the sci-fi or fantasy novels from my country go that extra mile.

 

I am confused if I should mention this in my query in the bio/comparison section.

 

I have been told that comparing my series with blockbusters is a big no-no.

 

So, would mentioning this make the agent think like "Does this guy thinks he is like GRRM or Tolkien?" or would it make him go "This guy has indeed gone an extra mile. Maybe I should take a look."?

 

What do you think?



#2 mwsinclair

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Posted 03 March 2017 - 08:20 AM

My first instinct is to say no, don't mention it in the query. In my opinion, the agent wants to see your writing and your ability to convey your story and to determine whether there's a market for that story; the tools you used or even developed to get there distract from the story. It's like saying, "To construct this building, I developed a new back-hoe to establish a foundation that's more effective than what has been used in the past." That's nice, but it's not germane right now.



#3 Zaarin

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Posted 03 March 2017 - 09:05 PM

As a fellow glossopoet, I agree with mwsinclair: a constructed language can add depth to your work but in and of itself doesn't necessarily improve it. I mean, they hired a linguist to construct the Na'vi language for Avatar (a very well-done language, I might add) when maybe the money would have been better spent on someone who knew how to write a decent story... ;) Think of yourself as a chef and your agent as a food critic: they want a good dish, not a list of the ingredients you used to make it. If the dish is good, they'll know you used good ingredients.






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