Jump to content

Disclaimer



Photo
- - - - -

Done for now. Please don't comment.


Best Answer smithgirl , 23 March 2017 - 09:26 AM

A great big thank you to everyone who gave me such fantastic and helpful commentary! I think I'm in a position to submit this to agents now. Best!

Go to the full post


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
61 replies to this topic

#41 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 17 March 2017 - 08:50 AM

Thank you SO MUCH CM_Fick and ryancalford!



#42 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 17 March 2017 - 11:37 AM

So I think I'm getting near the end here. I'm concerned about adding too much information about the final loss that brings Jack back because it involves a complex subplot that would introduce more information and more explaining, and another character. I think the query up to that point clarifies the story pretty well. I am also reluctant to make it more "voicey" because as soon as I start making changes, I introduce new issues that pertain to clarity, etc. My first concern is that the query gives a clear insight into the story and what it's about. It's been really difficult to get things clear (some people will surely think it's still not clear), so I don't want to mess with that. Thank you again!!!!

 

FYI if it sounds like Henry gets pretty beat up, it's because he does. All the characters take a beating, but the end is relatively good. Jack and Henry get back together and Jack takes the big step of moving in with Henry.

____________________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by a secret: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend that left Jack so emotionally scarred. It’s an injury Henry has been unable to heal, so when he meets Althea he steps into her bed, without telling Jack, creating a new secret more dangerous than the first.

 

Henry is desperate to learn Althea’s story, but Althea is desperate to get Jack back. After finally revealing her secret, Henry wants to leave her bed for good, but before he can she steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s betrayal, the inconceivable happens: Jack leaves them both.

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity and physical health. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral, but he’s not sure how to make that happen. It’s not until Henry suffers another unbearable loss that Jack might forgive him and return.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]



#43 Saints

Saints

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 23 posts
  • Literary Status:just starting, unagented
  • LocationUS Southeast

Posted 17 March 2017 - 10:21 PM

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by a secret: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend that left Jack so emotionally scarred (something about this sentence feels awkward). It’s an injury Henry has been unable to heal, so when he meets Althea he steps into her bed, without telling Jack, creating a new secret more dangerous than the first (the three commas in this sentence make it feel longer than it should).

 

Henry is desperate to learn Althea’s story, but Althea is desperate to get Jack back. After finally revealing her secret, Henry wants to leave her bed for good, but before he can she steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s betrayal, the inconceivable happens: Jack leaves them both. (This whole paragraph is perfect.)

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity and physical health. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral, but he’s not sure how to make that happen. It’s not until Henry suffers another unbearable loss that Jack might forgive him and return. (I think a hard-punching ending line is missing here.)

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

Maybe I'd need to read the manuscript to understand, but it's tripping me up that Henry and Althea enter into a relationship while they both want to get back together with Jack. Especially since Henry and Jack have been with each other with twenty years. But again, that's just my thoughts on the story itself, but I haven't read it so take it with a grain of salt. As far as your letter is concerned, I think it's tight and succinct, but a little wordy at times. 



#44 strangeface

strangeface

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 97 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging
  • LocationUS Southeast

Posted 18 March 2017 - 12:02 AM

So I think I'm getting near the end here. I'm concerned about adding too much information about the final loss that brings Jack back because it involves a complex subplot that would introduce more information and more explaining, and another character. I think the query up to that point clarifies the story pretty well. I am also reluctant to make it more "voicey" because as soon as I start making changes, I introduce new issues that pertain to clarity, etc. Better to do it than not. Take the time to make it as good as possible. My first concern is that the query gives a clear insight into the story and what it's about. It's been really difficult to get things clear (some people will surely think it's still not clear), so I don't want to mess with that. Thank you again!!!!

 

FYI if it sounds like Henry gets pretty beat up, it's because he does. All the characters take a beating, but the end is relatively good. Jack and Henry get back together and Jack takes the big step of moving in with Henry.

____________________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades, Jack and Henry have shared been in an open relationship overshadowed I'd prefer a word like "marred" here. by a secret: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend that left Jack so emotionally scarred This is a question. You can't end it with a full stop. I'd rephrase it to make it a statement.. It’s an injury Henry has been unable to heal, so when he meets Althea, he steps into her bed 1. I don't like that you connected this with "so," when what happens doesn't seem like a natural logical progression. 2. You never said who Althea is. 3. I'm not the only who's never heard the phrase "to step into someone's bed" before, right? , without telling Jack, creating a new secret more dangerous than the first.

 

Henry is desperate to learn Althea’s story, but Althea is desperate to get Jack back. After finally revealing her secret, Henry Henry reveals her secret? If not, bad grammar here. wants to leave her bed for good, but before he can, she Althea steals takes his phone and steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s betrayal Don't really like the whole subordinate clause before the main clause thing two sentences in a row., the inconceivable happens: Jack leaves them both Well technically he wasn't with Althea..

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. Their Henry and Althea's malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity He goes insane? Or are you just using a bad hyperbole here? Don't use it if it's the latter. and physical health How?. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. That last sentence sounded like a diary entry, or something you would tell your friend, not something to write in a query. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral, but he’s not sure how to make that happen. It’s not until Henry suffers another unbearable loss that Jack might forgive him and return. Okay, but so what? I feel like an entire narrative arc has been completed here, as though you just told me the entire story, leaving nothing to intrigue me. What happened? What makes me want to read more?

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

Needs more voice.

 

Keep trying :)



#45 ryankalford

ryankalford

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 181 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, unagented
  • LocationUS Southwest

Posted 18 March 2017 - 07:25 AM

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity and physical health. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral, but he’s not sure how to make that happen. It’s not until Henry suffers another unbearable loss that Jack might forgive him and return.

 

Hmm. I think this sentence should be rephrased. It feels like it's missing it's proper transition from the previous sentence. Almost like a random statement of "oh, this too."

 

I'm sorry, but the last sentence is not a stake. Still vague, and leaves me unsatisfied instead of giving my the bang I need to be like "Oh yeah, I soooooo want to check out the sample pages right now!" What's this loss? I need some general idea (however fleeting) of it so I can feel it, and be invested in what your story's outcome will be.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

 

On one hand, I would like to see a bit more of a voice mixed in there because it does feel a little dry...but on the otherhand, it's all clear and concise, so I think you just have to go with your gut and see how it fares. There's certainly nothing I can find fault with, outside your lack of a real stake yet. 

 

 

But really, great job fleshing everything prior out. I definitly think you're extremely close now.


RECODED <250 EDITING FEEDBACK + ADVICE

http://agentquerycon...t-social-scifi/

 

RECODED QUERY (FINISHED???)

http://agentquerycon...scifi/?p=250665

 

RECODED: GENESIS (Dani POV) 250

http://agentquerycon...t-social-scifi/

 
RECODED: Chapter 1 (Lillian POV) 250

http://agentquerycon...-social-sci-fi/

 

RECODED Synopsis (REWRITING SOON)

http://agentquerycon...t-social-scifi/


#46 CM_Fick

CM_Fick

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 197 posts
  • Literary Status:published, self-published, unagented
  • LocationCanada
  • Publishing Experience:Mark of Fate, Bad Caveman Publishing, 2011

    Self published works:
    Burden of Fate, 2012
    Legacy of Fate, 2016
    When the Dead Rise: Series 1, 2016

Posted 18 March 2017 - 11:05 AM

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by a secret: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend that left Jack so emotionally scarred. It’s an injury Henry has been unable to heal, so when he meets Althea he steps into her bed, without telling Jack, creating a new secret more dangerous than the first.

 

Henry is desperate to learn Althea’s story, but Althea is desperate to get Jack back. After finally revealing her secret, Henry wants to leave her bed for good, but before he can she steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s betrayal, the inconceivable happens: Jack leaves them both.

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity and physical health. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. (this is still a problem for me - it feels like a fragmented, tacked-on afterthought as it is.) Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral, but he’s not sure how to make that happen. It’s not until Henry suffers another unbearable loss that Jack might forgive him and return. (I think both ryankalford & Saints pointed out that this last line could be stronger. Not saying that you need to reveal the loss, but something that will make the reader need to know more. Perhaps something about after an unbearable loss, Henry realizes.... or grows-up, and only then will he be in a place for Jack to consider taking him back. This is a poorly written example, since I don't know the specifics, but it gives you an idea)

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult (<--yay!) literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

This is coming together nicely! so much of an improvement over earlier versions! You are so close! 



#47 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 18 March 2017 - 11:35 AM

Thank you everyone for checking back. I really appreciate it. I think I need a little break from this and then will try again.

 

CM: Yes, I did add the adult literary. I don't usually include that because it's my impression that literary is usually, by definition, adult unless it's described as YA. But I agree it's good to avoid all potential ambiguities.



#48 CM_Fick

CM_Fick

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 197 posts
  • Literary Status:published, self-published, unagented
  • LocationCanada
  • Publishing Experience:Mark of Fate, Bad Caveman Publishing, 2011

    Self published works:
    Burden of Fate, 2012
    Legacy of Fate, 2016
    When the Dead Rise: Series 1, 2016

Posted 18 March 2017 - 11:46 AM

No problem, I know I kept putting in that the audience was needed in previous critiques. I'm not sure about the literary definition, so I cannot comment on that, but I did have an agent specifically tell me it was one of the first three things she looked for in a query: genre, audience and wordcount. I figure its better there than not. 



#49 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 18 March 2017 - 11:56 AM

I really wonder sometimes, going through our queries like this for every little ambiguity/problem. Always guessing what an agent wants/doesn't want. Agents must be one of the most psychoanalyzed segments of the population.



#50 dragoness

dragoness

    Veteran Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 262 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, unagented
  • LocationEurope

Posted 19 March 2017 - 05:40 AM

After I finished my critique to you I realized what bothered me in the query: I feel it's to 'bony', with no 'meat' on it. I think you better detail the first paragraph with saying something about who Jack and Henry are (What are their characters like? what do they like to do?) Otherwise there's no voice in the query, and it's too general, IMO...

 

Good luck!



#51 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 19 March 2017 - 06:06 PM

Maybe I'd need to read the manuscript to understand, but it's tripping me up that Henry and Althea enter into a relationship while they both want to get back together with Jack. Especially since Henry and Jack have been with each other with twenty years. Henry and Jack are together at the beginning of the story. Henry wants to get closer to Jack by learning what happened between Jack and Althea. Henry can't get the story from Jack, so he tries Althea. Initially, it's only Althea who wants to get back with Jack. Later Jack leaves Henry, and then Henry wants back with Jack, too. 

 

But again, that's just my thoughts on the story itself, but I haven't read it so take it with a grain of salt. As far as your letter is concerned, I think it's tight and succinct, but a little wordy at times. 



#52 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 19 March 2017 - 06:13 PM

For two decades, Jack and Henry have shared been in an open relationship overshadowed I'd prefer a word like "marred" here. by a secret: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend that left Jack so emotionally scarred This is a question. You can't end it with a full stop. I'd rephrase it to make it a statement.. I guess I was thinking this really is a statement, an explanation of the previous clause. Not sure how other people feel about this? It’s an injury Henry has been unable to heal, so when he meets Althea, he steps into her bed 1. I don't like that you connected this with "so," when what happens doesn't seem like a natural logical progression. The natural progression should be that Henry steps into Althea's bed to learn the secret so he can heal Jack. Maybe not as natural as I had thought.

 

Henry is desperate to learn Althea’s story, but Althea is desperate to get Jack back. After finally revealing her secret, Henry Henry reveals her secret? If not, bad grammar here. wants to leave her bed for good, but before he can, she Althea steals takes his phone and steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s betrayalDon't really like the whole subordinate clause before the main clause thing two sentences in a row., the inconceivable happens: Jack leaves them both Well technically he wasn't with Althea.. Good point about Jack.

 

Henry and Althea descend into a relationship rooted in hatred for one another and a reckless longing for Jack. TheirHenry and Althea's malignant trysts erode Henry’s sanity He goes insane? Yes, he nearly has a mental breakdown. Or are you just using a bad hyperbole here? Don't use it if it's the latter. and physical health How?. Plus, a mutual friend tells him Jack is drinking heavily. Okay, but so what? I feel like an entire narrative arc has been completed here, as though you just told me the entire story, leaving nothing to intrigue me. What happened? What makes me want to read more? I'm also a bit concerned too much of the narrative arc.

 

 



#53 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 19 March 2017 - 07:19 PM

OK, here we go again. I have tried to add more voice, address other concerns. The query is longer now, hopefully not too long. I think the ending might still be subpar. It jus have a hard time with it because it really does become a question of whether Jack and Henry will recover and then the subplot brings Jack back. Anyway, thank you again.

________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by the specter of unknown events between Jack and his ex-girlfriend, Althea. Jack carries a part of what happened into the most intimate crevices of his life, he trembles in Henry’s arms, during sex, and in a sense Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. So when Henry meets her one night he steps into her bed, leaving Jack safe in the dark, creating a new secret Henry thinks might help but in fact could destroy everything.

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. Soon Henry learns that as desperate as he is to learn Althea’s secret, Althea is desperate to get Jack back for herself. When he gets her story Henry seeks to leave her bed for good, get back to his good life, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment, he slams the door, changes his phone number. He doesn’t come back.

 

In a desolation previously unknown, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes in himself signs of an emotional breakdown and hears through a mutual friend that Jack is in a similar state. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether the story that should have their relationship better will destroy them both.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]



#54 strangeface

strangeface

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 97 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging
  • LocationUS Southeast

Posted 19 March 2017 - 08:11 PM

OK, here we go again. I have tried to add more voice, address other concerns. The query is longer now, hopefully not too long. I think the ending might still be subpar. It jus have a hard time with it because it really does become a question of whether Jack and Henry will recover and then the subplot brings Jack back. Anyway, thank you again.

________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by the specter of unknown events by a dark question: what happened between Jack and his ex-girlfriend, Althea.? Jack carries a part of what happened into the most intimate crevices of his life, he trembles in Henry’s arms, during sex, and in a sense so Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. So when Henry meets her one night You know, you put commas into and keep them out of the strangest places. There's supposed to be a comma here. he steps into "Steps into?" her bed, leaving Jack safe in the dark, creating a new secret Henry thinks might help but in fact could destroy everything. The last two clauses should be two sentences. When they're two sentences, the whole thing goes on too long.

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. Soon Henry learns that as desperate as he However desperate Henry is to learn Althea’s secret, Althea is just as desperate to get Jack back for herself. When he Henry gets her story, Henry seeks he wants to leave her bed for good, and get back to his good life, but before he can, Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment, he slams the door, and changes his phone number. He doesn’t come back.

 

In a desolation previously unknown, he has never known, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes in himself signs of an emotional breakdown and hears through a mutual friend that Jack is in a similar state. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether the story that should have their relationship better will destroy them both. The what? I don't even know what this sentence is trying to say.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

It's certainly better than before, but it still needs some work. Keep trying :)

 

If you could take a look at my query, that would be great :) http://agentquerycon...a-contemporary/



#55 CM_Fick

CM_Fick

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 197 posts
  • Literary Status:published, self-published, unagented
  • LocationCanada
  • Publishing Experience:Mark of Fate, Bad Caveman Publishing, 2011

    Self published works:
    Burden of Fate, 2012
    Legacy of Fate, 2016
    When the Dead Rise: Series 1, 2016

Posted 19 March 2017 - 09:24 PM

OK, here we go again. I have tried to add more voice, address other concerns. The query is longer now, hopefully not too long (from everything I've read 250 is the ideal number to aim for. Just keep your opening and closing tight and you should be fine. 350 should be the max.). I think the ending might still be subpar. It jus have a hard time with it because it really does become a question of whether Jack and Henry will recover and then the subplot brings Jack back. Anyway, thank you again.

________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by the specter of unknown events ​marred only by Jack's history with his ex-girlfriend, Althea. between Jack and his ex-girlfriend, Althea. Whatever happened between them, often overflows Jack carries a part of what happened into the most intimate crevices of his Jack's life -- he trembles in Henry’s arms, during sex, and in a sense(,) Althea she comes to haunt Henry, too. So when Henry he meets her one night, and he steps into her bed, he believes he's leaving Jack safe in the dark(.) What he's done, however, is created creating a new secret Henry thinks might help but in fact that could destroy everything.

 

------------------------------

My suggestions for flow and readability: For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship, ​marred only by Jack's history with his ex-girlfriend, Althea. Whatever happened between them, often overflows into the most intimate crevices of Jack's life -- he trembles in Henry’s arms during sex, and in a sense, she comes to haunt Henry, too. So when he meets her one night, and steps into her bed, he believes he's leaving Jack safe in the darkWhat he's done, however, is created a new secret that could destroy everything. (I'm not saying this is how this should be, but I tried to edit it so you could see how taking out some of the names, which I find to be a little excessive, helps the flow.)

------------------------------

 

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. Soon Henry learns he discovers that as desperate as he is to learn Althea’s secret, Althea she is desperate equally determined to reclaim to get Jack back for herself. When he gets her side of the story Henry seeks to leave her bed for good, get back to his good life, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role participation? in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves. Henry’s apartment, He slams the door, changes his phone number, and doesn’t come back.

 

In a desolation previously unknown, (I get what you're trying to convey, and I think strangeface made a good suggestion here, but you can also simply state: "Despondent and heartbroken,") Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes in himself the signs of an imminent emotional breakdown, and hears through a mutual friend, learns that Jack is in a similar state.

 

Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether the story that should have their relationship better will destroy them both. (I have to think more on this... It doesn't read right)

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

To be honest, I preferred the previous incarnation of your first paragraph. The sentence about the haunting is a nice addition however. I'm sorry about all the minor edits -- I tried to explain my reasoning for some of them. This definitely feels more character driven, so that's a plus!! 



#56 suja

suja

    Veteran Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 520 posts
  • Literary Status:unagented
  • LocationUS Midwest

Posted 19 March 2017 - 10:03 PM

Hi, returning the favor :)

OK, here we go again. I have tried to add more voice, address other concerns. The query is longer now, hopefully not too long. I think the ending might still be subpar. It jus have a hard time with it because it really does become a question of whether Jack and Henry will recover and then the subplot brings Jack back. Anyway, thank you again.

________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship overshadowed by the specter of unknown events between Jack and his ex-girlfriend, Althea. Jack carries a part of what happened into the most intimate crevices of his life, he trembles in Henry’s arms, during sex, and in a sense Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. So when Henry meets her one night he steps into her bed, leaving Jack safe in the dark, creating a new secret Henry thinks might help but in fact could destroy everything. I'm sorry, but I admit to being confused. I haven't read the earlier versions of your query; this is my first read. Do you mean to say that Jack has been traumatized by some secret involving his relationship with his ex, and that Henry, in a effort to help Jack, decides to sleep with Jack's ex to find out this secret? If so, consider trimming and tightening and being more specific. 

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. Soon Henry learns that as desperate as he is to learn Althea’s secret, Althea is desperate to get Jack back for herself. When he gets her story Henry seeks to leave her bed for good, get back to his good life, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment, he slams the door, changes his phone number. He doesn’t come back. Again, this can be trimmed. Henry's plan to retrieve Althea's secret and return to his life with Jack fails when she reveals Henry's role in the affair to her ex. Jack storms out and cuts all ties to Henry. In a query, you don't need the details required in a mini-synopsis. 

 

In a desolation previously unknown, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes in himself signs of an emotional breakdown and hears through a mutual friend that Jack is in a similar state. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether the story that should have their relationship better will destroy them both. Tighten and sharpen the stakes here. Drawn into a toxic relationship with Althea, Henry's health deteriorates. He learns Jack is in a similar rut. Then you could say something like, to heal, they need to get together. But then leave us to wonder if the trust between them is beyond repair for any sort of relationship. I'm just throwing ideas out there, but something in your words showing clear stakes. 

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

my 2c. Please take what works. 



#57 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 20 March 2017 - 10:19 AM

So I'm back to revising. In the last installment, I lengthened the first paragraph in an attempt to add more voice and better clarify why Henry pursues Althea, bit I'm concerned it got diluted. I tried to shorten a bit more again. I struggle to add voice without making things longer and then people seem to find it too wordy.  I'm also having issues with the the end, I'm having a hard time making it seem engaging enough. The question is really whether Henry and Jack will be able to get back together because without each other their lives are unraveling, but people seem to think that lacks the necessary punch. I'm not just not sure what else to say...? thanks again.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship marred only by Jack’s history with his ex-girlfriend, Althea. What happened between them intrudes upon the most intimate crevices of Jack’s life and with time Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. So when he meets her one night he steps into her bed, thinking he’s leaving Jack safe in the dark. But what he’s really done is create a new secret that could destroy everything.

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. As desperate as he is to learn Althea’s secret, she is equally desperate to reclaim Jack for herself. When Henry gets her side of the story he plans to leave her for good, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment and changes his phone number. He doesn’t come back.

 

Heartbroken and abandoned, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes signs of an imminent breakdown and through a mutual friend he learns that Jack is in a similar condition. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether they can ever reconnect to make that happen.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]



#58 CM_Fick

CM_Fick

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 197 posts
  • Literary Status:published, self-published, unagented
  • LocationCanada
  • Publishing Experience:Mark of Fate, Bad Caveman Publishing, 2011

    Self published works:
    Burden of Fate, 2012
    Legacy of Fate, 2016
    When the Dead Rise: Series 1, 2016

Posted 20 March 2017 - 04:50 PM

So I'm back to revising. In the last installment, I lengthened the first paragraph in an attempt to add more voice and better clarify why Henry pursues Althea, bit I'm concerned it got diluted. I tried to shorten a bit more again. I struggle to add voice without making things longer and then people seem to find it too wordy.  I'm also having issues with the the end, I'm having a hard time making it seem engaging enough. The question is really whether Henry and Jack will be able to get back together because without each other their lives are unraveling, but people seem to think that lacks the necessary punch. I'm not just not sure what else to say...? thanks again.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

[intro]

 

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship marred only by Jack’s history with his ex-girlfriend, Althea. What happened between them intrudes upon the most intimate crevices of Jack’s life and with time Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. So when he meets her one night he steps into her bed, thinking he’s leaving Jack safe in the dark. But what (All) he’s really done is create a new secret that could destroy everything. I like this opening. I suggest changing this to all and removing but because you start the following sentence with but as well. 

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. As desperate as he is to learn Althea’s secret, she is equally desperate to reclaim Jack for herself. When Henry gets her side of the story he plans to leave her for good, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment and changes his phone number. He doesn’t come back.

 

Heartbroken and abandoned, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erode Henry’s physical health. He recognizes signs of an imminent breakdown(,) and through a mutual friend he learns that Jack is in a similar condition. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether they can ever reconnect to make that happen.

This is just my suggestion (for content) and will need to be worked into your style, but here's the points I think should be stressed: Henry needs Jack, just as much as Jack needs him -- but he doesn't know if Jack can forgive his betrayal. Because, only by leaning on each other, will they be able to pull one another out of their downward spiral.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

Overall, I think this is great. I do still think that some on the instances where you've named Althea can be changed to she/her - and that's the last I'll say on that ;) 

 

I'll keep my eye out for revisions on the final paragraph, but for the most part, I'd say you're almost there! 



#59 smithgirl

smithgirl

    smithgirl

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  • Literary Status:emerging, published, unagented
  • LocationUS Northeast

Posted 23 March 2017 - 09:26 AM   Best Answer

A great big thank you to everyone who gave me such fantastic and helpful commentary! I think I'm in a position to submit this to agents now. Best!



#60 Wanjoo

Wanjoo

    New Member

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 12 posts
  • Literary Status:unagented
  • LocationPacific Islands

Posted 10 April 2017 - 05:46 AM

For two decades Jack and Henry have shared an open relationship marred only by Jack’s history with his ex-girlfriend, Althea. This is confusing to me. If the relationship is open, then why would an ex-relationship weigh so heavily? What happened between them intrudes upon the most intimate crevices of Jack’s life and with time Althea comes to haunt Henry, too. This may be nit picking, but the first sentence says the relationship is marred. But then here you say with time, it also haunts Henry. If the relationship is marred, would Henry already be affected by it? So when he meets her one night he steps ends up into her bed , thinking he’s leaving Jack safe in the dark I don't get this. But what he’s really done is create a new secret that could destroy everything.

 

But Jack isn’t as safe as Henry thought. As desperate as hHe is to learn wants Althea’s secret, but she is equally desperate to reclaim wants Jack for herself. When Henry gets her side of the story he plans to leave her for good, but before he can Althea steals Jack’s number from his phone. When her call reveals Henry’s role in the affair, the inconceivable Why is this inconceivable? happens. Jack leaves Henry’s apartment and changes his phone number. He and doesn’t come back.

 

Heartbroken and abandoned, Henry allows Althea to draw him into an abusive, mutually hateful relationship. Their malignant trysts erodes Henry’s physical health. He recognizes signs of senses an imminent breakdown and through a mutual friend he learns that Jack is in a similar condition. Henry knows he and Jack need each other to get out of this spiral. The question is whether they can ever reconnect to make that happen.

 

Love is a 100,000-word adult literary novel. [closing stuff]

 

Thank you again for your helpful review of my query.






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users