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REVISED: Black Eyes (Urban Fantasy)


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#1 CS29

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 02:11 AM

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He specializes in monsters who prey on people.

 

So he's out of his depth when a desperate mother comes to him as a last hope of finding her missing son. The boy, Bryan, has been missing for months. The police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave behind a single shred of evidence. Turns out Bryan isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely, either. At least a dozen other children have vanished in the last few decades.

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the center of the town's economy for most of its history. He also learns Bryan encountered a black-eyed girl before he disappeared. A girl who looked like the child who vanished before him. Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has ever encountered before.

 

The monster infects him, turning more than just his eyes black. With his body succumbing to this darkness, he has only hours to find a way to kill the monster, free the children of its control, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel .

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

 

Thanks in advance for any advice or feedback you can offer!



#2 rccallahan

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 06:29 PM

Hey!  

 

Saw your query ask and I thought I'd try to help out.  Hope this helps!

 

 

Sam Hain (I see what you did there and it made me snort/laugh in the best way possible) deals with things that shouldn't exist: he specializes in monsters who prey on people.(This sounds like an episode of Supernatural and that makes me happy).

 

So he's out of his depth when a desperate mother comes to him as a last hope of finding her missing son.(Why would he be out of his depth? How does he usually catch cases? It seems like this would be a relatively common way? And why does she come to him?  Is he known as the Supernatural Guru? Or is she just running around with missing fliers, stapling them to anything and anyone who stands still long enough?) The boy, Bryan, has been missing for months. The police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave behind a single shred of evidence. (How about: The lack of evidence left behind by his kidnapper leaves the police stumped. I just felt like these two sentences should be condensed) However, after Sam does some digging, it turns out Bryan isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely, either. At least a dozen other children have vanished in the last few decades. (This sentence feels like a jump forward from the last one, like there needs to be something that takes us from “There is no hope and no clues” to “Okay, now he’s part of a pattern”).

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns these disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the historical center of the town's economy for most of its history. He also learns Bryan encountered a black-eyed girl before he disappeared.(From who?  How? Something about this seems off.) A girl who looked like the child who vanished before him.(These two sentences seem like they should go together too, but they both seem off.... Forced.  Like I see what you’re doing and why they need to be included, but they kind of come out of your voice and feel very… rote. What about: A local tells him (or whatever happened) that the last time Bryan was seen was in the company of a black-eyed girl who bore a striking resemblance to the last child who vanished.) Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has ever encountered before.

 

The monster infects him, turning more than just his eyes black. With his body succumbing to this darkness, he has only hours to find a way to kill the monster, free the children of its control, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows. (I might be wrong, but this whole section feels like it’s giving too much away for a query.  Or maybe that it’s jumping in and explaining a lot of things way too fast.  Something else I notice is that we have very little sense of what this creature is, does, wants, etc.  Which is fine if you’re going for an air of mystery, but you’re undermining that with the “this is what happens” vibe of this.  If it were me, I’d leave it out of the query, but definitely include a more fleshed out version in the synopsis. Side note-- a lot of the advice posts and "how to" guides suggest that these be done in two paragraphs. I know there's a bunch of conflicting advice, but I thought it worth a mention.)  

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel. (NICE!)

 

Overall notes:  Cool story idea! I'm a character person, so I'd love to see a little more of Sam fleshed out because I don't really get a sense of who he is or why he's doing this (which is SUUPER hard to convey in a query and I completely understand your pain).  Anyway, I'd totally pick this book up. Kinda reminds me a little of mine :) Good luck!

 

RC



#3 trailerbride

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Posted 12 June 2017 - 07:23 PM

A good query on the whole. I've cut some of the fat and highlighted places where you could improve it.

 

Hope something helps.

 

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain (nice!) deals with things that shouldn't exist--. He specializes in monsters who prey on people.

 

So hHe's out of his depth (but is he? Isn't this what he does?) when a desperate mother comes to beseeches him to as a last hope of finding her missing son. The boy, Bryan, has been missing for months. The pPolice have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave behind a single shred of evidence behind. Turns out Bryan isn't the first child to disappear go missing in Lurnely, either. At least a dozen others children have vanished in the last twenty years few decades.

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the center of the town's economy for most of its history. He also learns Bryan encountered a black-eyed girl before he disappeared (you need a different word here. Repetition!). A girl who looked like the child who vanished before him (This is not a great sentence). Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has ever encountered before.

 

The monster infects him, turning more than just his eyes black. With his body succumbing to this darkness, he has only hours to find a way to kill the monster, free the children of its control, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel .

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

 

Thanks in advance for any advice or feedback you can offer!



#4 CS29

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Posted 13 June 2017 - 01:38 AM

Thank you both! Lucky for me, you pointed out some of the same parts I myself didn't like, but was having trouble getting right.

 

Let's give this another go. I trimmed down some parts, though hopefully added enough to clarify in others. Thanks again!

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He kills monsters who prey on people.

 

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son. Bryan has been missing for months. Police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. Bryan's mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.

 

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the former center of the town's economy. Bryan's journal tells of his encounter with a black-eyed girl, who bore a resemblance to the child who vanished before him, right before he went missing. Other locals report more sightings of these black-eyed kids. Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has encountered before.

 

A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to all forms of damage both mundane and supernatural. The creature refrains from killing him and infects him instead, turning more than his eyes black. Changing him into another of its kind. With his body succumbing to darkness, he has only hours to kill the monster, free the children, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel .

 

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#5 Ajax

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Posted 13 June 2017 - 05:20 AM


Dear Agent,

X <----------- (Leave only one line between the paragraphs.)

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He kills monsters who prey on people. (What's new? What's your fresh spin on this wildly popular trope? I like that you have kept it short.)
X

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son. Bryan has been missing for months. Police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. Bryan's mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.
X

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the (local/town's) mine, the former center of the town's economy. Bryan's journal tells of his encounter with a black-eyed girl, who bore a resemblance to the child who vanished before him, right before he went missing. (How is this relevant to the main plot? Also, consider breaking this sentence into two for more clarity.) Other locals report more sightings of these black-eyed kids.
X
Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has encountered before. a monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to all forms of damage (.) both mundane and supernatural. The creature refrains from killing him and infects him instead, (Why? I feel like you might be giving away too much of the story.) turning more than his eyes black. Changing him into another of its kind. With his body succumbing to darkness, <--------- (What does this mean?) he has only hours to kill the monster, free the children, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows. (How does he know that he only has hours before he turns into this creature? Where is the monster in this period of time?)

X

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel. (This query reminds me of a survival horror game called Outlast. I don't have an idea for companion book titles, but I highly recommend you to add the titles of well-known books that share some key elements with your novel.)

X

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

Good luck.



#6 Vio Liddell

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Posted 13 June 2017 - 03:15 PM

Thank you both! Lucky for me, you pointed out some of the same parts I myself didn't like, but was having trouble getting right.

 

Let's give this another go. I trimmed down some parts, though hopefully added enough to clarify in others. Thanks again!

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't existhe kills monsters who prey on people. I agree that this hook sounds too common, and as such, weak. Maybe give us a feature of your MC or a feature of the monsters he kills. What makes your story different from the other ones with the same premise?

 

A desperate mother comes to him in the hope that he can find her son. Young Bryan has been missing for months. Police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. And Bryan isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely: a dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the former center of the town's economy. Bryan's journal (diary?) tells of his encounter with a black-eyed girl, who bore a resemblance to the child who vanished before him right before he went missing. Other locals report more sightings of these black-eyed kids. Convinced that the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster (something? I feel like "a monster" gives away too much already) unlike any he has encountered before.

 

A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to all forms of damage both mundane and supernatural. The creature refrains from killing him and infects him instead, turning more than his eyes black. Changing him into another of its kind. With his body succumbing to darkness, he has only hours to kill the monster, free the children, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows. I agree that this paragraph kind of reads like a big spoiler... I think you should keep the suspense about what Sam finds in the depths of the mine.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel.

 

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

As for the comp with a survival horror game, this sounds more Slender than Outlast to me. Lol

 

I think you have a good query here. Just give a few more specifics about your MC, the kind of monsters he tracks down and kills, and some of the reasons he has for doing so.

 

I'd appreciate your feedback on my query too! It's "The Hero Syndrome (YA dark fantasy)".

 

Good luck!



#7 CS29

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Posted 16 June 2017 - 01:20 AM

Thank you both for your replies! I really appreciate the help. I've added some parts in parentheses where I'm still having some trouble getting things right. Thanks again for any help or direction you can offer. Vio, I'll definitely give your query a look.

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He kills monsters who prey on people. A walking encyclopedia of monsters, myths, and folklore. (I'm sure I need a better way of wording this, but one of the driving plot lines is that Sam has never heard of something like the monster in the mine and that irks him to no end.)

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son. Bryan has been missing for months. Police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. His mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.

 

Sam learns the disappearances began after a disaster in the Lurnley mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl, who bore a resemblance to the child who vanished before him. Other accounts report sightings of black-eyed kids appearing to children before they went missing. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are all connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before.

 

A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly immune to all forms of damage. But rather than spill his guts, the creature spares him. He wakes unharmed, but as he continues his investigation, finds his body changing. More than his eyes are turning black. With his mind and body slowly failing, Sam must figure out what he's up against and how to stop it while he still can. (Not so sure about this sentence, but this is a turning point in the story, where he figures out how to fight the creature because of what it's done to him. This last bit still seems spoilery, so I'm trying to narrow it down, but leave it vague at the same time.)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel. (A friend of mine has actually referred to the book as Harry Dresden meets Dean Winchester (Supernatural, if you're not familiar) with a little more asshole thrown in, which while funny, feels both inappropriate and a bit too high a claim.)

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#8 rccallahan

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Posted 16 June 2017 - 05:27 AM

Hey! 

 

I see your awesome revisions!  If I may, I had a few more thoughts, reading your update: 

 

Thank you both! Lucky for me, you pointed out some of the same parts I myself didn't like, but was having trouble getting right.

 

Let's give this another go. I trimmed down some parts, though hopefully added enough to clarify in others. Thanks again!

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He kills monsters who prey on people. <3

 

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son.; Bryan has been missing for months. Police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. Bryan's mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in Lurnely. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years. (This paragraph still feels really choppy to me)

 

 

Diving deeper, Sam learns the disappearances started after a disaster in the mine, the former center of the town's economy. Bryan's journal tells of his encounter with a black-eyed girl, who bore a resemblance to the child who vanished before him, right before he went missing. Other locals report more sightings of these black-eyed kids. Convinced the mine and children are connected, Sam descends into its depths, where he discovers a monster unlike any he has encountered before.

 

A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to all forms of damage both mundane and supernatural (This is a fragment). The creature refrains from killing him and infects him instead, turning more than his eyes black. Changing him into another of its kind (again, another fragment that should really be combined and clarified with the previous sentence.  That said, this is much better than the last version!). With his body succumbing to darkness, he has only hours to kill the monster, free the children, and save himself before he joins the creature in the shadows. (Because I also have shadowy monsters in my story, I'm curious:  is he physically going to join this creature-- like is it a writhing mass of darkness, or is it a specific creature that you're not naming for suspense's sake?  I'd love to learn a little bit more about this creature/monster thing.) If you have a sec, I'd love your opinion on my UNSUNG LULLABY query http://agentquerycon...mance/?p=340892  I wish you the best of luck! 

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel .

 

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#9 CS29

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Posted 18 June 2017 - 12:47 AM

Thanks Aloha and Olelo! I'll give your query a look.



#10 CS29

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Posted 23 June 2017 - 04:06 AM

Did some more tweaking. I want to thank everyone for their help and feedback. I immensely appreciate it. Hopefully it sounds a bit better now. I've noted some parts i'm still not sure about. Thanks in advance for any help or advice you may have!

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist. He kills monsters who prey on people. Years of experience have made him a walking encyclopedia of monsters, myths, and folklore. (I'm sure I need a better way of wording this, but one of the driving plot lines is that Sam has never encountered anything like the monster in the mine, which irks him to no end.)

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months. The police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. His mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.

 

Sam soon learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children before they disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are all connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before.

 

A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly immune to all forms of damage. Rather than spill his guts, the creature spares him. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation. He soon finds his body changing, but more than his eyes are turning black. With his mind and body slowly failing, Sam must figure out what he's up against and how to stop it while he still can. (Not so sure about this part, but this is a turning point in the story, where Sam figures out how to fight the creature because of what it's done to him. This last bit still seems spoilery, so I'm trying to narrow it down, but leave it vague at the same time.)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel. (A friend of mine referred to the book as Harry Dresden meets Dean Winchester (Supernatural, if you're not familiar) with a little more asshole thrown in, which while funny, feels both slightly inappropriate and a bit too high a claim.)

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#11 kmanz

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Posted 24 June 2017 - 11:05 PM

 

Did some more tweaking. I want to thank everyone for their help and feedback. I immensely appreciate it. Hopefully it sounds a bit better now. I've noted some parts i'm still not sure about. Thanks in advance for any help or advice you may have!

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist, killing monsters who prey on people. Years of experience have made him a walking encyclopedia of monsters, myths, and folklore. (I'm sure I need a better way of wording this, but one of the driving plot lines is that Sam has never encountered anything like the monster in the mine, which irks him to no end.)

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months. The police have found nothing. Whoever took him didn't leave a shred of evidence behind. His mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years. Like the cases before his, the police have found nothing. Whoever took Bryan didn't leave a shred of evidence behind.

 

Sam soon learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed boys and girls approaching the other children who later disappear. Convinced the mine, the mysterious children, and the continuing disappearances are all connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly immune to all forms of damage any attacks. ( I think if you are going to keep this as is, as an incomplete sentence, it should go with the paragraph before it where you first reference the monster.)

 

Rather than spill his guts, the creature spares him Sam. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation. He soon finds his body changing, but more than his eyes are turning black. With his mind and body slowly failing, Sam must figure out what he's up against and how to stop it while he still can. (Not so sure about this part, but this is a turning point in the story, where Sam figures out how to fight the creature because of what it's done to him. This last bit still seems spoilery, so I'm trying to narrow it down, but leave it vague at the same time.) (Could you maybe talk about how Sam uses his knowledge of all things monster, as stated before, to uncover the secret and devise a plan?)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel. (A friend of mine referred to the book as Harry Dresden meets Dean Winchester (Supernatural, if you're not familiar) with a little more asshole thrown in, which while funny, feels both slightly inappropriate and a bit too high a claim.)

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

This seems like a really interesting story! I want to read it! Good luck and thanks for your comments on my query.



#12 CS29

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 01:38 AM

Thanks Kathryn! I really appreciate your thoughts. Here's the revised version.

 

Dear Agent,

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist, killing monsters who prey on people. Years of experience have made him a walking encyclopedia of monsters, myths, and folklore.

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months. His mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years.

 

Sam soon learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly immune to all forms of damage.

 

Rather than spill his guts, the creature spares him. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation. He soon finds his body changing, but more than his eyes are turning black. The creature's corruption renders him weak, barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. This is how it has used and controlled the children. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and put a stop to the disappearances once and for all. (This last paragraph definitely still needs some work.)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#13 Sataris

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Posted 26 June 2017 - 09:34 AM

Thanks Kathryn! I really appreciate your thoughts. Here's the revised version.

 

Dear Agent,

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: killing monsters who prey on people. Years of experience have made him a walking encyclopedia of monsters, myths, and folklore. (I know you said this bit was a central plot point, but I don't think we really need it in the query. If he makes his living killing monsters, finding one he doesn't understand makes it clear that the monster is something else entirely. it might emphasize your hook better too)

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months, and His mother reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley. A dozen others have vanished in the last fifty years. already stated kids are missing

 

Sam soon learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly invincible immune to all forms of damage

 

But Rather than spill his guts, the creature spares him. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation. He soon finds his body changing, but more than his eyes are turning black this reads as multiple parts of him are turning black; is that what you're going for? Wording may need a slight redo here specifically. The creature's corruption renders him weak, barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. This is how it has used and controlled the children. implied But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and put a stop to the disappearances once and for all. (This last paragraph definitely still needs some work.)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

I agree that the last paragraph needs the most work, but it's still not that far off. The phrase "more than his eyes are turning black" made me stumble briefly, and I think cutting the link explanation streamlines it a bit, since we can probably figure that out on our own.

 

The immune to all forms of damage thing comes off a little video game-ish, which I don't think you want here. I did wonder if there was a way you could do this query without introducing Bryan by name, but I can see how that might be difficult since the journal is important.

 

I think the biggest this query is missing now is a powerful last line; something like Sam must kill the monster before he becomes one himself, but better phrased. Also, how does he react to the fact that he's becoming what he's always hunted? Revolted? Frantic? Desperate?

 

But yeah overall, this is a solid improvement from your last query, and a huge, huge step from the initial one. Nicely done!

 

Hope that was helpful. If you've got a moment, I'd appreciate it if you took a look at the query in my signature.


No current query!


#14 CS29

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 12:37 AM

Thank you very much Sataris! I'll definitely give your query a look.

 

 

Dear Agent,

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: monsters who prey on people.

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months, and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley.

 

Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly invincible. 

 

The creature spares him. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation. He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he must find the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes the sort of monster he has always hunted. (I'm glad you suggested removing the explanation of the link. It seemed a bit clunky to me as well. I'm still not super sure about the last couple lines, though I think the suggestion of a powerful last line is certainly a good one.)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#15 jaustail

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Posted 27 June 2017 - 02:39 AM

New here. JMO:

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: monsters who prey on people.(maybe end at monsters or describe them like: Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: monsters the size of blue whale)(how does Sam deal with monsters? Does Sam also have super powers or does he have weapons that have magic?)

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months(mention how many months? three, six?), and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing around Lurnley.(not sure you need to mention Lurnley. Unless it's important. Right it becomes information that doesn't help so replace Lurnlry with neighborhood)

 

Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine(how? maybe: Sam learns the first child disappeared a week after a collapse...). Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared(nice). Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and seemingly invincible. (this is telling. maybe: Sam attacks the monster with his sword but with a swipe of its giant finger, the monster deflects it. The monster crushed Sam in his other hand rendering him unconscious. Sam wakes in his bedroom with his body changing...)

 

The creature spares him. He wakes unharmed and confused, but continues his investigation(not sure if anything is left to investigate. he knows the cause of missing children). He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he must find the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes the sort of monster he has always hunted. (I'm glad you suggested removing the explanation of the link. It seemed a bit clunky to me as well. I'm still not super sure about the last couple lines, though I think the suggestion of a powerful last line is certainly a good one.)

 

I like the story. The query makes it clear what to expect from the book. So good job on that front.

 

Good luck!!



#16 CS29

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 12:06 AM

Thanks jaustail!

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: demons, undead, shape-shifters, anything that preys on other humans.

 

A desperate mother comes to him to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in the town of Lurnley.

 

Delving into the town's history, Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to his usual means of attack.

 

The creature incapacitates him with ease, yet it spares him, leaving only the stain of its touch on his skin. Sam continues his investigation into the monster, determined to uncover a way to kill it. He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he must find the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes the sort of monster he has always hunted.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration,



#17 jaustail

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Posted 28 June 2017 - 12:29 AM

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: demons, undead, shape-shifters, anything that preys on other humans.  (nice)

 

A desperate mother comes to him(why does she come to him? as in how does she know that he will help/he fights demons?) to find her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in the town of Lurnley.

 

Delving into the town's history, Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared(I like this idea). Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to his(Sam's) usual means of attack.(what are the usual means of attack? sword, chants, talisman?)

 

The creature incapacitates him with ease, yet it spares him, leaving only the stain of its touch on his skin(like a scar?). Sam continues his investigation into the monster, determined to uncover a way to kill it. He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his(Sam's) mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise(maybe knowledge or expertise on magic), he discovers its weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he must find the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes the sort of monster he has always hunted.(maybe: and becomes the next black-eyed minion)

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

 

It's interesting. The query makes it clear what to expect from the book. Maybe invest more in Sam. You start with him fighting demons like he's used to fighting demons. How does he do that?



#18 CS29

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 03:05 AM

Thanks again jaustail!

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: demons, undead, shape-shifters, anything that preys on humans.

 

A desperate mother comes to him as a last hope of finding her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in the town of Lurnley.

 

Delving into the town's history, Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to his usual weapons. A blade won't cut it and a bullet won't pierce it. Nothing he tries seems to work.

 

The creature incapacitates him with ease, yet spares him, leaving only a mark of its touch on his arm. Sam continues his investigation, determined to uncover a way to kill the monster. He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers a weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he must find the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes a monster in the darkness himself.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.



#19 jaustail

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Posted 30 June 2017 - 03:44 AM

JMO:

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: demons, undead, shape-shifters, anything that preys on humans.

 

A desperate mother comes to him as a last hope of finding her son, Bryan, who has been missing for months and reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in the town of Lurnley.(how about: ...of finding her missing son, Bryan. She reveals....    reduces word count)

 

Delving into the town's history, Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to his(Sam's) usual weapons. A(Sam's) blade won't cut it and a bullet won't pierce it(Does Sam use both blade and gun? Maybe just mention the weapons Sam uses). Nothing he tries seems to work.(it's mentioned in earlier sentences.)

 

The creature incapacitates him with ease, yet spares him, leaving only a mark of its touch(maybe: only leaving a scar from its claw) on his arm. Sam continues his investigation, determined to uncover a way to kill the monster(and find Bryan and the other missing kids). He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers a weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now he(maybe replace 'he' with 'Sam') must find(how about: hunt) the creature again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes a monster in the darkness himself.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.

 

 

It's interesting and you're almost there. Not many suggestions. I got a clear sense of what to expect in the book so the query does its job.

 

JMO.

 

Good luck!!



#20 CS29

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Posted 02 July 2017 - 02:02 AM

Thanks again jaustail. You've been a big help!

 

 

Sam Hain deals with things that shouldn't exist: demons, undead, shape-shifters, anything that preys on humans.

 

A desperate mother comes to him as a last hope of finding her son, Bryan.  She reveals he isn't the first child to go missing in the town of Lurnley.

 

Delving into the town's history, Sam learns the disappearances began after a collapse in the local mine. Bryan's journal details his encounter with a black-eyed girl in the days before he went missing. His description of her bears a striking resemblance to the child who vanished before him. A few talkative locals report sightings of black-eyed kids approaching the other children who later disappeared. Convinced the mine, the black-eyed kids, and the missing children are connected, Sam descends into the mine, where he discovers a creature unlike any he has encountered before. A monster of shadows, powerful enough to gut a man in a blink, and immune to his usual weapons. It's too fast to fight and a bullet won't pierce its hide.

 

The creature incapacitates him with ease, yet spares him, leaving only a black mark on his arm. Sam continues his investigation, determined to uncover a way to kill the monster and save the children. He soon finds his body changing, growing weaker with every passing minute. The creature's corruption renders him barely able to walk, let alone fight. Worse still, it grants the monster a connection to his mind. But the connection goes both ways. As the creature draws on his strength and expertise, he discovers a weakness, a possible means to kill it and banish the shadow looming over Lurnley. Now Sam must hunt the monster again and destroy it before he falls victim to its influence and becomes a creature of the darkness himself.

 

At 79,000 words BLACK EYES is an adult urban fantasy novel, and will appeal to fans of books like the Dresden Files as well as shows like Supernatural.






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