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Pansies Cannot Survive Here, Y.A. Fiction


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#1 tsnyder

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 12:11 PM

My latest version is at the bottom of this thread.

 

Thanks a bunch

 

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, but while staying at her grandma’s house for the summer, Claire learns all about her grandma’s eccentric tastes.

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs tomato leaves as if they are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

After hearing one of grandma's tales about Lyn and her bathtub fight with a scorpion family that resembles cantaloupe seeds, Claire sees strength through family.

 

 After hearing the tale about Hope and the events that led to her murdering her own personal stalker, Claire wonders how far she would go to protect her hometown.

 

Claire’s grandmother explains through her tales how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.
 

NO PANSIES CAN SURVIVE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 41,572 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#2 Sataris

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 02:04 PM

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee lol, but while staying at her grandma’s house for the summer, Claire learns all about her grandma’s eccentric tastes. you'll have to reword this first sentence without this last clause, but it's a bid redundant with the first line.

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I meanThis might be veering a little close to addressing the reader? not sure. I do like the voice though. who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs tomato leaves as if they are besties? It took me a second to realize that it's the tomato and the grandma that are besties; maybe "rubs the leaves of a tomato as if the two of them are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

After hearing one of grandma's tales about Lyn and her bathtub fight with a scorpion family that resembles cantaloupe seeds, Claire sees strength through family. Not sure who Lyn is, but I'd probably cut this anyway

 

 After hearing the tale about Hope Is hope a person? and the events that led to her hope? murdering her own personal stalker, Claire wonders how far she would go to protect her hometown.

 

the two lines above feel like a synopsis, particularly the first. Also, is her hometown something she's going to have to protect? if so, i'd like to hear a bit more about it

 

Claire’s grandmother's explains through her tales explain how pansies cannot survive in the desert and where prickly pear blossoms are the norm.
 

NO PANSIES CAN SURVIVE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 41,572 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I think the voice comes through pretty strongly in this query, which is awesome. I do, however, wonder what exactly is at stake. You've hinted that Claire considers how far she'd go to save her hometown; does it need saving? It's pretty clear that this is a character driven piece, but what exactly is at stake if Claire doesn't grow enough as a person?



#3 kathleenq

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 05:08 PM

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, (this is fantastic) but while staying at her grandma’s house for the summer, Claire learns all about her grandma’s eccentric tastes. until she stayed at her grandma's house for the summer.

 

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs tomato leaves as if they are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

After hearing one of grandma's tales about Lyn and her bathtub fight with a scorpion family that resembles cantaloupe seeds, Claire sees strength through family.

 

 After hearing the tale about Hope and the events that led to her murdering her own personal stalker, Claire wonders how far she would go to protect her hometown.

 

Claire’s grandmother explains through her tales how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.

 

I don't know how these stories relate to Claire's overall development in protecting her hometown or whatever it is she needs to do. The beginning of this is strong. I laughed out loud, and I wanted it to keep the tone throughout. I don't know who Lyn and Hope are and how they will relate to the overall story, or if they are even real people and it's just stories to teach a lesson. Either way, I think you need to focus more on what Claire is going to have to do, or what she's going to learn overall. The stories are just too disjointed and I've lost interest.
 

NO PANSIES CAN SURVIVE (I like the title in your query request better - Pansies Cannot Survive Here) is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 41,572 words (this is very short for a novel. I also don't think you need the exact word count, perhaps round it to the nearest hundred.)

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

I hope this is helpful! If you have a minute, I'd appreciate you checking out my query, Glass Domes. Thanks!



#4 tsnyder

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 07:16 PM

Thanks for awesome advice.

 

I made some changes.  Noticed that I was not clear concerning how the grandma was a storyteller.  Please give me some more advice.  Thanks a bunch

 

 

 

 

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer.

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if the two of them are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these intense stories about  girls who dine on over the top chocolate period brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering their own stalker.

 

Through these tales Claire sees how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#5 enveniya

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 07:47 PM

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer. (Removed the break here, putting these two sentences in the same paragraph) At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean, (added a comma) who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if the two of them are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these intense stories about  girls who dine on over the top chocolate period brownies (!! I laughed at this), who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering their own stalker.

 

Through these tales Claire sees how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.

 

There is very little focus on Claire's motivations and how she can grow through hearing these tales. The stories are funny, but have little relevance to why Claire needs to hear them. Is Claire timid and scared, which is why her grandma is telling her these stories?
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

42k words is really short for a YA novel, and agents might reject your query for that reason alone. 60-80k is usually the norm. You might want to consider changing it to a MG novel, since that word count is more acceptable for that age range, but since you have chocolate period brownies in your novel, that might not be the solution either.

 

Here's a website that provides some advice on word counts for genres: http://www.writersdi...definitive-post

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

You have a very unique voice and I love the tone of this query. It'll be a lot stronger if Claire's wants are tied into the stories her grandma tells her. 

 

If you have the time, please take a look at my query, The Tempest and the Fire!



#6 daddude7

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 08:45 PM

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer.

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if the two of them are besties? (This line reads awkward. Who's the besties? The grandma and a leaf,or two leaves? Needs a comma after "I mean")  But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how to grow into a strong woman females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these intense stories about  girls who dine on over-the-top chocolate period brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering her their own stalker.

 

Through these tales Claire sees how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms triumph are the norm.
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

***

 

Hope this is helpful. I would like to understand what role Claire plays--she comes across rather passive.



#7 tsnyder

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Posted 19 June 2017 - 11:41 PM

made another revision.

Claire is a somewhat passive character. She is there to observe, listen, and frustrate grandma with her sometimes snotty teenage comments. 

The fictional characters that grandma creates in the the stories she tells to Claire are more likely the stars of the show. 

I have wondered about the word count for this story. I could always work on it more this summer to see where I could add more.

In general this is fun.

Thanks for the help and advice.

 

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer. At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean, who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if both plant and human were friends?  But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these stories about girls who dine on over-the-top chocolate period brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering her own stalker.

 

Through these tales Claire learns she too must be seen. She wants to stay in her grandmother’s hometown to continue the stories. She needs to know how they end. Most importantly, she learns how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.  
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#8 loopygoose

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 01:32 AM

Dear Agent,


Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, how would she know what skunk pee tastes like? until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer. At first Claire she thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean, who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs should this be strokes? the leaves of tomato plants as if both plant and human were friends?  But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these stories about girls who dine on do they literally dine on them or do they live off them over-the-top chocolate period What does this mean? brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering her own stalker. 

 

 

Through these tales Claire learns she, too, must be seen. Why? By whom? She wants to stay in her grandmother’s hometown to continue the stories. What's stopping her? She needs to know how they end. Most importantly, she learns how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.  This last sentence doesn't work as the end of a query. You need to leave us with jeopardy that makes the agent want to read your book. 
 

 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

 

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

What a quirky, interesting idea! You are still at the stage where there are a number of things that need to be clarified (we've all been there) but it looks really fun.  Could you critique my query please?  http://agentquerycon...o-so-in-return/



#9 kwmags

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 01:35 PM

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer. I love this line! already shows characters voice

At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if the two of them are besties? But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach (is claire not interested in the stories? does she not want to be at her Grandmas?) Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope.  her story telling. Claire is drawn into these intense stories about girls who dine on over the top chocolate period brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering their own stalker. who will kill to save themselves.

 

Through these tales Claire sees how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm. This doesn't really tell me what is at stake here. What is the depth of these tales, what is she really learning here? I saw in your orginal version something about protecting her hometown? is that something thats important?
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I really do like the characters voice, but other than the Grandma telling wacky stories, what really is the story about? Is Claire lost and confused and her Grandma is trying to 'save' her? The last line needs to be more detailed as to what is at stake and what will Claire really take away from these stories. It sounds like a great read, just need to find more info about it. 

Also, I started critiquing your original one first. Put above it that you have revised it and its later down in the post so people know. Good luck!
My query is 
http://agentquerycon...interchangeable


 

 

 


#10 tsnyder

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Posted 20 June 2017 - 04:42 PM

I love how this process makes me think.

I've attempted again to connect the meaning behind Claire and why these stories are shared with her.

 

 

Dear Agent,

Claire never thought that Nutella could taste like skunk pee, until she stayed at her grandma’s house for the summer. At first Claire thinks her grandma is nuts. I mean, who keeps weed in their chocolate and rubs the leaves of tomato plants as if both plant and human were friends?  But it is through Grandma’s tales that Claire learns how strong females are formed.

 

Grandma weaves fiction with truth as she attempts to reach Claire through two concocted characters: Lyn and Hope. Claire is drawn into these stories about girls who dine on over-the-top chocolate period brownies, who battle a silent parade of scorpions, and where one ends up murdering her own stalker.

 

Through these stories, grandma brings Claire out of a depression. Claire learns by connecting with these fictional characters that her life matters too, if for no other reason than her grandmother says she does. She wants to stay in her grandmother’s hometown to not only continue the stories but to learn more about her quirky grandmother. Most importantly, she learns how pansies cannot survive in the desert and prickly pear blossoms are the norm.  
 

PANSIES CANNOT SURVIVE HERE is a young adult, coming of age novel complete at 42,000 words

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.






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