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HIDING HUDSON - YA Contemporary REVISED

Fiction Young Adult

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#1 kacimari

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 09:42 AM

REVISION:

 

Dear Agent,

 

Since his symptoms of Huntington’s Disease appeared, suicide has been on Hudson Trent’s agenda. But when his dying brother, Coop, decides he wants to be taken off life support on national TV, Hudson’s plans derail. Never mind that the producers will back a network-sponsored fundraiser to pay the Trent family’s medical bills. Never mind it's technically just fulfilling Coop's Advance Directive. Hudson sees it as killing his brother.

 

Unable to face Coop’s choice, Hudson escapes to the top of a twelve-story building, ready to jump. But he’s interrupted by Remi, a firework of a girl with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving Hudson’s life, only filming a video that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note.

 

The last thing Hudson expects is for Remi’s honest spontaneity to uncover a side to life he’s never known. When their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There he must decide what makes death worth chasing, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living.

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

Previous publications include the young adult novel, Antithesis, with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON.


Hope is faith holding out its hand in the dark.

#2 jaustail

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 10:55 AM

JMO:

 

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began killing his brain three months ago, Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life(good hook). He never imagined he’d have to sign-off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience. But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills. (sadly true)

 

Unable to kill Coop, Hudson escapes to the top of a 12-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret(maybe don't reveal 'fatal secret' instead reveal what she displays. like: Remi, a firework of a girl with severe anxiety issues), interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note.(i'd request pages after reading this)

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion, Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living. (i had to read this paragraph a few times. maybe reword this so it flows smoothly and make it clear)

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. After self-publishing several novels, I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.

 

 

It's a good query. Only the last paragraph was difficult to read and understand. Great bio.



#3 Springfield

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 12:42 PM

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began killing his brain three months ago, age Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life. Is the three months important? Also, isn't that early for HD? He never imagined he’d have to sign-off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience. But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills. There's a lot in here, and I'm not sure it's presented in the most impactful way, all shoved together like this. There's not a lot of breathing room, and some questions raised.

 

Unable to kill Coop, Wait, huh? Hudson escapes to the top of a 12-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret, which is? interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note. There are a lot of "documentaries" going on here, which is kind of odd, and the first one seems like a reality show.

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion, Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living. Personally, I don't find this compelling, as at this point in the query, I'm bored with three people back and forth with suicide. I know that sounds bad, and some characters have horrible things, but it just reads to me as draaaaaama. I don't get any voice or connection with Hudson; it's more a list of plot points.

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. If these were paid, cool, if not, I wouldn't include them. After self-publishing several novels, Are those the Inkspell ones? I'd make that clear, like, I self published .... X and Y. I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.



#4 lyncfs

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Posted 13 July 2017 - 06:18 PM

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began ​started killing his brain three months ago, Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life. ​(great hook. I am already biting my fingernails. I think you should reverse the order of the sentence. Start with Hudson, and end with Huntington Disease as the disease is not the star of the book.) He never imagined he’d have to sign-off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience.​(wow. although I don't really like this type of topic, it's compelling me to read on) But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills.

 

Unable to kill Coop, Hudson escapes to the top of a 12-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret, interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note.​ (Oh my god, this is so terrible...yet compelling and somewhat depressing. I think you can condense the 2nd and 3rd sentences into one to make it more impactful.)

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion​ (wait, do you mean she going to explode something? This is an awkward sentence. Maybe you were referencing firework/explosion but I would rephrase this), Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living. ​(the last sentence is a little vague. I think you could make it stronger with a choice between Remi and not wanting to fight the disease?)

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. After self-publishing several novels, I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. ​(I've heard agents hate it when you mention self publishing. You have strong enough credits here, to leave this sentence out). I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group(You already have great credentials, no need to mention these groups)

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.

 

​Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Wow, great premise although I still don't like the topic, but I would read your book anyway. Please critique my query when you get a chance. Thank you.


THE IMMORTAL GUARD. Link to my query. Please critique, if I have reviewed yours.

#5 perpetual

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 02:55 PM

Great query. Personally, I would love it if I knew what exactly made your story stand out from your comps. Part-way through, I was already thinking it was quite similar to both of those premises. I do think perhaps there needs to be a little bit more of a differentiation, even if that comes in the form of a different comp.


Query: Click here.

 


#6 RosieSkye

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 04:47 PM

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began killing his brain three months ago, (age) Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life. He never imagined he’d have to sign-off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience. (I find this second sentence a bit jarring. You set up your MC with a terminal disease and a suicide plan, and then with very little transition, move onto his brother's suicide and a television audience. It's a lot to bite off without knowing the premise of your story. Why does his brother want to commit suicide?) But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills.

 

Unable to kill Coop, Hudson escapes to the top of a 12twelve-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret, interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note. (I'd either expand on what the fatal secret is, or cut that part. Right now the wording is too vague. And Remi is filming a documentary too?  Is it connected to the first one?)

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion (I'm not sure if you mean this literally or figuratively. You've already referred to her as a firework, so I'm not sure if you're doing this intentionally or not), Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts (I'd expand on this, because it feels like this night with Remi is the heart of your story) fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living.

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. After self-publishing several novels, I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.

 

 

After reading your query, I think you should lose the part about Hudson's brother and the television audience.  It introduces a lot of major details that don't have any follow-up.  As I said above, it sounds like the heart of your story is Hudson's night with Remi, so just start with that.  "Terminally-ill Hudson is standing atop a twelve-story high-rise, contemplating ending his life early, when Remi swoops in" or whatever, and go from there.

 

Hope this helps!



#7 fernet

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 08:02 PM

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began killing his brain three months ago, Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life. (Can you rearrange a bit? -- When Hudson Trent found out Huntington's Disease was killing his brain, he knew he'd eventually take his own life. ['three months ago' seems unnecessary.]) He never imagined he’d have to sign off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience. But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills.  (I also find this jarring--I assume his brother has Huntington's, too, since it's hereditary? But this doesn't continue later in the query, which seems to be more about Hudson & Remi, so the detail just kind of dangles here. Either connect more clearly with the surrounding parts, or cut?)

 

Unable to kill Coop, Hudson escapes to the top of a 12-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret, interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note. (Can we have a little bit more about Remi? Because it sounds like she ends up being important to Hudson, but from this she just sounds kinda like an opportunistic jerk)

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion,(this image hits a wrong note for me, prose-wise --ok, Remi's a firework, an explosion. but 'tangled' connotes slowness, stuckness, staying put.)  Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. (This line works well.)  There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living. (Ehhhh this last line is not as sharp as the previous one--it's tricky! The whole idea of deciding to live is such a huge and kind of abstract thing, so even though it makes for good, clear stakes for your protagonist, it's hard to phrase in a way that doesn't sort of go all gloppy or sentimental. Unless you're Hamlet, I guess.)

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. After self-publishing several novels, I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.

 

Overall I think it's pretty good, but could use some clarification and smoothing out. The opening jumps around a little and feels scattered, and I also think we need a little more about Remi so she doesn't just sound like a Girl Ex Machina. The weight of the choice that Hudson has to make is clear, so that's good. And I like that he has a concrete, medical reason for thinking of suicide--I think that might help differentiate it from similar YA plots. (She says, hurriedly shoving her own YA-ish suicide-ish book draft under a convenient pile of papers.) I expect the resolution will be more interesting because of it.



#8 Rbevin17

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 09:27 PM

Dear Agent,

 

When Huntington’s Disease began killing his brain three months ago, Hudson Trent knew he’d eventually take his own life. (I think the connection between these two sentences is a little rough.  Maybe explain the connection between his brother's assisted suicide and his own thoughts of suicide?) He never imagined he’d have to sign-off on his brother Coop’s assisted suicide in front of a television audience. But that’s exactly what the documentary producers demand in exchange for the network-sponsored fundraiser that will pay off his family’s medical bills.  (in fact, I think the second two sentences in this paragraph make a better hook.  Maybe tart off with, Hudson Trent never imagine he'd have to... and then end the paragraph with the fact that this is messing up his own plans for suicide.)

 

Unable to kill Coop, Hudson escapes to the top of a 12-story building. Before he can jump, Remi, a firework of a girl with a fatal secret, (I think I need a little more background on where Remi came from) interrupts with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving his life, only filming a documentary that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note.

 

Tangled in Remi’s explosion, Hudson comes face to face with a life he never knew he missed. But when their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There, he must decide what makes a life worth ending, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living. (really like this paragraph)

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

I’ve published a novel and companion short story with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. After self-publishing several novels, I’m hoping to take my career to the next level with an agent. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON. Please let me know if I may send more.



#9 kacimari

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    Spark Volume VII, and the inaugural issue of Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things.

Posted 16 July 2017 - 06:38 PM

Bump for the revision. Thanks for the help, everyone!


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#10 BCVail

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Posted 16 July 2017 - 11:29 PM

REVISION:

 

Dear Agent,

 

Since his symptoms of Huntington’s Disease appeared, suicide has been on Hudson Trent’s agenda (good, clean sentence with a nice hook). But when his dying brother, Coop, decides he wants to be taken off life support on national TV, Hudson’s plans derail (the connection of why Hudson rethinks killing himself if his brother is going to die is unclear) . Never mind that the producers will back a network-sponsored fundraiser to pay the Trent family’s medical bills. Never mind it's technically just fulfilling Coop's Advance Directive (I know what an advanced directive is, but I'm not sure how common a term that is for a YA). Hudson sees it as killing his brother.

 

Unable to face Coop’s choice, Hudson escapes to the top of a twelve-story building, ready to jump (confused here... Hudson was planning on killing himslef, his plans were derailed, and now he's still planning on killing himself?). But he’s interrupted by Remi, a firework of a girl with a suicidal plan of her own. She’s not interested in saving Hudson’s life, only filming a video that will turn their final hours into the ultimate suicide note.

 

The last thing Hudson expects is for Remi’s honest spontaneity to uncover a side to life he’s never known. When their night of firsts and lasts fades into morning, Hudson finds himself back on the ledge. There he must decide what makes death worth chasing, and what, if anything, is reason enough to keep living.

 

HIDING HUDSON, a 65,000 word Young Adult Contemporary novel, will appeal to fans of ALL THE BRIGHT PLACES by Jennifer Niven and MY HEART AND OTHER BLACK HOLES by Jasmine Warga.

 

Previous publications include the young adult novel, Antithesis, with Inkspell Publishing. Several of my short pieces have been selected for literary magazines and anthologies, including Ember: A Journal of Luminous Things, Sucker Literary Volume III, and Spark Volume VII. I am a member of SCBWI and the Flint Area Writers Group.

 

Per your instructions, I’ve include X pages of HIDING HUDSON.

 

I like the concept a lot, I'm just a little unclear in following Hudson's goals and motivations.







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