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The Tempest and the Fire (Fantasy)

Fiction Fantasy Young Adult

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#1 enveniya

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Posted 17 June 2017 - 12:43 AM

 
 
 
 
Dear [Agent Name],
 
Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris unknowingly uses magic to create a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by the legendary kings, Saulos and Ananos. 
 
While her sisters flourish with their newfound careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a land of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge, uncovering a past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. The longer she stays, the more her fear turns into affection. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors. [Agent personalization here] 
 
[Personal info here]
 
Thank you for your time and consideration.
 
 
 
Thanks for looking through. If you would like me to critique your query, let me know!


#2 AndieKahl

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Posted 17 June 2017 - 04:45 PM

My first reaction is that this query is very short. I think the best advice I can give you is to say more about the book, brag a little about how great it is! Don't hesitate to spoil the book, you're not trying to interest a reader, you're trying to sell your product. 



#3 Paulsvault

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Posted 17 June 2017 - 05:26 PM

 

Dear [Agent Name],
 
Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris unknowingly uses magic to create a crack in a mountain. Interesting, but is the crack in the mountain due to the debtors or are the two not related at all?  A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by the two legendary kings. Saulos and Ananos.  I only do this to cut down on names since they don't show up at any other point in the query.
 
While her sisters flourish with their newfound careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. I like the way you word this, gives a slight connection to the MC and her longing for something more. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a land of ash. They fled the city in the 1st paragraph, and now she it back. Is there a way to connect this a little better instead of it just happening? Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world. There may be a better way to structure this. I get it, but it just seems the Beast appears out of nowhere. If it's connected to the 'mysterious shadow looms beyond' from the 1st paragraph then find a way to connect it.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge, uncovering a past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. The longer she stays, the more her fear turns into affection. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters (last we heard they were flourishing with their newfound careers, now they need saving?) and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors. [Agent personalization here] 
 
[Personal info here]
 
Thank you for your time and consideration.
 
 
 
Thanks for looking through. If you would like me to critique your query, let me know!

 

Hope this helps. You are off to a good start, just needs a bit more work. Check mine out in the sig below if you get the time


The Warrior's Crown Query: http://agentquerycon...own-ya-fantasy/

The Warrior's Crown Synopsis: http://agentquerycon...own-ya-fantasy/

The Warrior's Crown First 250: http://agentquerycon...warriors-crown/

The Warrior's Crown Hook: http://agentquerycon...ntasy/?p=337108

 

Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free. - James Douglas Morrison

You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you. - Ray Bradbury

 


#4 secondstar87

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Posted 17 June 2017 - 05:39 PM

Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris unknowingly uses magic to create a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by the legendary kings, Saulos and AnanosI understand that the crack comes in later, but I don't think it's necessary for your hook; if anything it's jarring and seems disconnected. Instead, maybe tell us what Eris "is," since clearly she can work magic. 
 
While her sisters flourish with their newfound careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night or you could say, "dreaming every night of a shadow on the other side of the mountain..." . When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a land of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world. Very interesting! Using the name Beast implies Eris has already heard of him. If she hasn't, perhaps rephrase to clarify: "She unwittingly draws the wrath of an immortal hooded figure, known as the Beast..." 
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of the Beast's? revenge, uncovering a past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. The longer she stays, the more her fear of the Beast? turns into affection. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters from what? and perpetuate the City’s lies about what?, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors. [Agent personalization here] It will appeal to fans of XYZ. Also is it YA? I get the impression it is, but you should clarify the intended audience. 
 
This sounds really neat! And an original retake. My "To Sail the Stars" is also a retelling and I'd love your thoughts on my query. 

http://agentquerycon...sail-the-stars/

 

"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus." - Mark Twain 

"There are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds." - G.K. Chesterton 


#5 enveniya

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Posted 18 June 2017 - 03:05 PM

Thank you so much for the feedback!

 

 

Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris unknowingly uses magic to create a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by the legendary kings, Saulos and AnanosI understand that the crack comes in later, but I don't think it's necessary for your hook; if anything it's jarring and seems disconnected. Instead, maybe tell us what Eris "is," since clearly she can work magic. 

 

The reason why I kept the crack in the mountain was to establish Eris's use of magic in the world. If I took out this sentence where she creates a crack with magic, the bit below where she learns how to control her magic seems to come out of nowhere. And *scratches head* another problem is that Eris isn't anything. In the world she inhabits, everyone has the ability to wield magic. However, the two kings destroyed all knowledge of magic, so magic comes in the form of fate or chance. As a result, she brushes aside her creating the crack in the mountain as just a natural phenomenon.
 
I have two versions here, with the beginnings changed. Let me know which one sounds better!
 
Option #1:
 
Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris’s magic manifests through her distress, unknowingly creating a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by two legendary kings. 
 
While her sisters flourish with their careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge, uncovering his past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. To her horror, the Beast intends to destroy the City’s legacy and all those who live in it, including Eris’s sisters. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors.
 
 
Option #2:
 
To Eris, saving one individual is more important than saving the collective good. After taking money from the Silver City’s coffers to assist an impoverished farmer, her inevitable punishment looms. Unwilling to be trapped in a place where the rules don’t make sense to her, Eris escapes the City.
 
She delves through a crack in a mountain - a crack she once unknowingly created with magic - only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel, discovering that all the stories she grew up with was a lie. She begins to uncover the Beast’s secret, a dark past entwined with the two kings who once ruled the City. To her horror, he intends to destroy the City’s legacy and all those who live in it, including Eris’s family. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her family and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance.
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors.


#6 Sataris

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 07:47 PM

 

Thank you so much for the feedback!

 

 

The reason why I kept the crack in the mountain was to establish Eris's use of magic in the world. If I took out this sentence where she creates a crack with magic, the bit below where she learns how to control her magic seems to come out of nowhere. And *scratches head* another problem is that Eris isn't anything. In the world she inhabits, everyone has the ability to wield magic. However, the two kings destroyed all knowledge of magic, so magic comes in the form of fate or chance. As a result, she brushes aside her creating the crack in the mountain as just a natural phenomenon.
 
I have two versions here, with the beginnings changed. Let me know which one sounds better!
 
Option #1:
 
Three nights before her family’s lives are bound bound how? do they become slaves? if so, could you say: three days before Eris' family is enslaved to their debtor to their debtor, Eris’s magic - unbeknownst to her - manifests through her distress and unknowingly creates a crack in a nearby mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by two legendary kings. 
 
Is there another word to describe the city other than as the capital? it's slightly awkward to describe it as a capital. I think you might actually be able to cut the kings part as well.
 
While her sisters flourish with their careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. I actually really like this line, but I think it might be background we can do without When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack she created in the mountain only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection <I might cut this bit;unsure However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge: uncovering his past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. To her horror, the Beast intends to destroy the City’s legacy and all those who live in it, including Eris’s sisters. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Super interesting take on the beauty and the beast. It's really cool that I got all the way to your closing sentence without realizing that's what it was. I picked the first option because I feel it's a good bit stronger - hope that's okay. Overall, I think there's a small amount of background that could be cut here, but it's a pretty strong query. The stakes are very clear, and it doesn't seem like you've revealed too much. nicely done, and thanks for the critique!



#7 tsnyder

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 11:09 PM

Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, Eris’s magic manifests through her distress, unknowingly creating a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by two legendary kings. What debt? Is she the only one with magic in the family?
 
While her sisters flourish with their careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadowwho is the shadow that she dreams of...magic, the crack, her soon to be antagonist?  every night. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. She unwittingly draws the Beast’sIs the beast the panther cub or some other dark demon that emerges when the panther is killed? wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge, uncovering his past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City. To her horror, the Beast intends to destroy the City’s legacy and all those who live in it, including Eris’s sisters. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. 
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors.
 
This sounds like a tale where the beast is very much a beast, both inside and out. Just a little clarification with who or whom the beast may be.  Does sound like an interesting read though.


#8 Erevos

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 11:19 AM

Hello there!

 

I'll pick Option 1!

 

Thank you so much for the feedback!

 

 

The reason why I kept the crack in the mountain was to establish Eris's use of magic in the world. If I took out this sentence where she creates a crack with magic, the bit below where she learns how to control her magic seems to come out of nowhere. And *scratches head* another problem is that Eris isn't anything. In the world she inhabits, everyone has the ability to wield magic. However, the two kings destroyed all knowledge of magic, so magic comes in the form of fate or chance. As a result, she brushes aside her creating the crack in the mountain as just a natural phenomenon.
 
I have two versions here, with the beginnings changed. Let me know which one sounds better!
 
Option #1:
 
Three nights before her family’s lives are bound to their debtor, I like Sataris' input here, though for me it's clear what bound means. Eris’s magic manifests through her distress, unknowingly creating a crack in a mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the Silver City, a prosperous capital left behind by two legendary kings. 
 
While her sisters flourish with their careers, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. I'll have to disagree with Sataris here. This sentence actually answers my question of why she decided to leave the city and go through the crack. "She feels stifled with her life and keeps dreaming of that shadow." It reveals that she feels connected to it, else there was no reason at all for her actions. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack in the mountain only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. <-Perhaps you can connect those two sentences. Take this advise with a grain of salt. -> She unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge, uncovering his past entwined with the two kings who ruled the City.  To her horror, the Beast intends to destroy the City’s legacy and all those who live in it, including Eris’s sisters. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her sisters and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance. The stakes are clear, only thing that bothers me a little is that I don't know anything about the City's lies. I only found out at the very end. Can you perhaps mention something about them? The part where you mention the Beast's wish to destroy the city seems appropriate.
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast. It explores the concept of saving one individual over the collective good, and what it means to be part of a losing side of a history that is written by the victors.
 

 



#9 enveniya

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 01:21 PM

Thank you all for the feedback! 

 

I struggled a little with using the word "enslaved" in the query, because it's a heavy word with a lot of connotations. It's only mentioned for a brief time and is not the focus of the book. Nevertheless, Eris pretty much says "we would've been slaves" in the first five pages of the novel, so I don't think my reservations hold much weight.

 

Here's the revised version:

 

Three nights before her family is enslaved to their debtor, Eris’s magic - unbeknownst to her - manifests through her distress and creates a crack in a nearby mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond, but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the prosperous Silver City. 
 
While her sisters flourish, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, delving through the crack she created only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. This act unwittingly draws the Beast’s wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection. However, what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge: the City is not what it seems, and the Beast intends to destroy all those who live in it, including Eris’s family. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her family and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance.
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast.


#10 kwmags

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 09:49 PM

Three nights before her family is enslaved to their debtor, Eris’s magic - unbeknownst to her - manifests through her distress and creates a crack in a nearby mountain. A mysterious shadow looms beyond is the shadow just something she can see?   , but she is forced to suppress her curiosity as she and her family flee to the prosperous Silver City. 
 
While her sisters flourish, Unable to flourish like her sisters in the new city, Eris finds her life stifled as a city guard, dreaming of the shadow every night. When her father dies, she escapes the City in despair, she runs away, delving through the crack she created only to find a dead forest of ash. Starving and exhausted, she is forced to kill to survive and she is forced to slaughter a panther cub to survive. This act unwittingly drawthe attention of the Beast wrath to her, an immortal hooded figure sealed away from the rest of the world.
 
Agreeing to restore life to his dead land as penance for her actions, Eris learns how to control her magic under his the Beast's tutelage. The longer she stays, the more her fear of him turns into affection.  I do think maybe you need something here about the affection but this line doesn't flow to me. However,  But what she thought was a simple promise begins to unravel into a tale of revenge: the City is not what it seems, and the Beast intends to destroy all those who live in it, including Eris’s family. Eris now faces an impossible choice: save her family and perpetuate the City’s lies, or reveal the truth and help the Beast exact his vengeance.
 
THE TEMPEST AND THE FIRE is a 90,000 word adult fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast.
 
It wasn't until I read the last line that it is a retelling that I knew it was Beauty and the Beast (one of my fav movies too!). After I found that out I re-read it and it made more sense. Not sure if you should or not, but maybe put the last line as your opening so the agent knows what to look for when reading the query? Maybe thats not what they like, but because its one of my favorite movies it made me re read a few times. I think it has great potential!!! Thanks for looking at my query!






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