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The City Beneath the Tree (adult urban fantasy)


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#1 roxannepark

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 12:02 AM

Hi everyone! I've hit that oh-so-fun stage in the writing process and could use your guys' help reviewing my query. I'd be super grateful for some outside thoughts (and will review queries to the best of my ability in return). Thank you!

 

Dear [insert name],
 
I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [insert reasons], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.
 
Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others perform daily miracles, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant, living life as best she can in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, one of four secret magical havens carved out from our modern world.
 
When her fiancé is murdered, the only man with answers is an ex-politician recently acquitted over a series of kidnappings and murders—failed human experiments seeking to inject magic into the magicless. Anjali forces him to help her and, in the process, begins to question what magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful guarded and constrained. A city where even a little girl can have the strength to destroy herself and everyone around her.
 
Anjali soon discovers that her ex-politician might not be as guilty as the city believes, but beholden to a much greater, underground threat. As she sinks deeper into the same mysteries that killed her fiancé, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear.
 
THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [x pages/chapters] below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Newest version here:

http://agentquerycon...ntasy/?p=345163



#2 Theo A. Gerken

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 03:00 AM

Hi everyone! I've hit that oh-so-fun stage in the writing process and could use your guys' help reviewing my query. I'd be super grateful for some outside thoughts (and will review queries to the best of my ability in return). Thank you!

 

Dear [insert name],
 
I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [insert reasons], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.
 
Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others perform daily miracles, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant, living life as best she can in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, one of four secret magical havens carved out from our modern world.
 
When her fiancé is murdered, the only man with answers is an ex-politician recently acquitted over a series of kidnappings and murders—failed human experiments seeking to inject magic into the magicless. Anjali forces him to help her and, in the process, begins to question what magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful guarded and constrained. A city where even a little girl can have the strength to destroy herself and everyone around her.
 
Anjali soon discovers that her ex-politician might not be as guilty as the city believes, but beholden to a much greater, underground threat. As she sinks deeper into the same mysteries that killed her fiancé, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear.
 
THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [x pages/chapters] below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

I like it. You describe the plot in a calm, steady voice. Good title. It's not perfect, but I can't find any major flaws.


Return the favour?? Link my query here.


#3 Vio Liddell

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 08:36 AM

Hi!

 

Hi everyone! I've hit that oh-so-fun stage in the writing process and could use your guys' help reviewing my query. I'd be super grateful for some outside thoughts (and will review queries to the best of my ability in return). Thank you!

 

Dear [insert name],
 
I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [insert reasons], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.
 
[MC's age?] Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others perform daily miracles (what kind of miracles? Give an example), Anjali works as an ordinary accountant, living life as best she can in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, one of four secret magical havens carved out from our modern world. I don't think you need this worldbuilding detail. It slows down your hook.
 
When her fiancé is murdered, the only man who could provide answers is an ex-politician recently acquitted over a series of crimes—failed human experiments seeking to inject magic into the magicless. Anjali forces him to help her (how does she do that? Blackmail?) and, in the process, begins to question what magic means in a city where the weakest citizens are disregarded and the most powerful are guarded and constrained. A city where even a little girl can have the strength to destroy herself and everyone around her. This is very interesting, but is this little girl just here as an example or does she play a significant part in the plot? If so, you may want to include a few more details about her.
 
Anjali soon discovers that the ex-politician might not be as guilty as the city believes (he's been acquitted but the citizens still blame him?), but beholden to a much greater, underground threat. As she sinks deeper into the same mysteries that killed her fiancé, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear. This ending is a bit vague. Maybe you could somehow tie in the failed human experiments on the magicless? It's an interesting bit of information but you don't come back to it. Maybe expand a bit more on the presumed reason for the murder of her fiancé (and on the failed experiments/disparity in magic abilities if this is connected). Also, the stakes are a bit vague: what does justice mean for Anjali? Tracking down and punishing the murderer herself? Magic equality in her city? How could that pursuit of justice endanger the lives of her loved ones? And who are those remaining loved ones?
 
THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [x pages/chapters] below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Your query is really intriguing but it lacks some details and a bit of voice. I'd like to see more of Anjali's personality and POV coming through. You have to convey her emotions through your words: she can't have such a neutral tone as she faces her marginalizing lack of magic, the murder of her fiancé, and the truth behind the alleged guilt of the ex-politician. See what I mean?  :wink:

 

I would really appreciate your thoughts on my query too: http://agentquerycon...fantasy-rev-47/

 

Good luck!



#4 roxannepark

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Posted 09 August 2017 - 11:05 AM

Hi!

 

 

Your query is really intriguing but it lacks some details and a bit of voice. I'd like to see more of Anjali's personality and POV coming through. You have to convey her emotions through your words: she can't have such a neutral tone as she faces her marginalizing lack of magic, the murder of her fiancé, and the truth behind the alleged guilt of the ex-politician. See what I mean?  :wink:

 

I would really appreciate your thoughts on my query too: http://agentquerycon...fantasy-rev-47/

 

Good luck!

 

Thanks! That's really great feedback.

 

And as for your earlier question, yes, the little girl is a major character, but she kind of exists in her own co-plot (a kind of Rogue/Jean Grey from XMen meets Sonea from the Black Magician kind of thing; as the story goes on, people discover the antagonists have actually been doing the experiments to help powerful, but unstable magic users like her). She and Anjali don't directly interact with each other (although other characters interact with both)... so it's been kind of challenge trying to include her in the query so readers/agents aren't thrown by her first POV chapter, but also keeping her query mention short and directly related to the other stuff I've been describing.



#5 CrankyViolet

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Posted 10 August 2017 - 11:44 AM

Hi everyone! I've hit that oh-so-fun stage in the writing process and could use your guys' help reviewing my query. I'd be super grateful for some outside thoughts (and will review queries to the best of my ability in return). Thank you!

 

Dear [insert name],
 
I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [insert reasons], I thought it might be a good fit for your list. Comes off as a little indecisive; it's implied that you think it's a good fit by sending the query in the first place. 
 
Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with Is this a big deal or does it happen all the time?. While others perform daily miracles, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant, living life as best she can in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, one of four secret magical havens carved out from our modern world.   (Does that tie in later or not? If not, ditch it.) 
 
When her fiancé is murdered, the only man with answers is an ex-politician recently acquitted over a series of kidnappings and murders—failed human experiments seeking to inject magic into the magicless (is there a fantasy noun for this? It reads awkwardly to me). Anjali forces him to help her (how?) and, in the process, begins to question what magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful guarded and constrained. A city where even a little girl can have the strength to destroy herself and everyone around her.  (Is this in reference to Anjali? Or another plot point?)
 
Anjali soon discovers that her (the?) ex-politician might not be as guilty as the city believes, but beholden to a much greater, underground threat. As she sinks deeper into the same mysteries that killed her fiancé (how were they involved?), Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear (Did her fiance have the same threat posed to him? What changed?).
 
THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [x pages/chapters] below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

On the whole I dig it. My major concern is differentiating between the little girl and Anjali (which you explained in a later post) and why/if our modern world matters. Sounds a little Harry Potter or Eoin Colfer-ish, since my mind immediately goes to Earth/Gedema conflict with the allusion to the underground threat. Not sure if that's where my mind is supposed to go. 



#6 ymchen

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Posted 10 August 2017 - 04:30 PM

Hi everyone! I've hit that oh-so-fun stage in the writing process and could use your guys' help reviewing my query. I'd be super grateful for some outside thoughts (and will review queries to the best of my ability in return). Thank you!

 

Dear [insert name],
 
I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [insert reasons], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.
 
Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic  that the rest of  her family was born with. While others  they perform daily miracles, Anjali she works as an ordinary accountant, living life as best she can with her fiance in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, one of four secret magical haven carved out of from our modern world. (Unless the knowledge of the other 3 havens are integral to the storyline, I think you can leave this out).

 
But when her fiance is When her fiancé is murdered, the only man with answers is an ex-politician recently acquitted over a series of kidnappings and murders—failed human experiments seeking to inject magic into the magicless. (How does an ex-politician have answers? Is it answers he has, or perhaps his ability to help her find the killer? And why are the failed experiments important at this point? Is it linked to how her fiance was murdered?) Anjali forces him to help her (how? be specific) and, in the process, starts to begins to question what magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful guarded and constrained. (I think this sentence can be more concise, to pack an "oomph".) A city where even a little girl (who? Anjali's relatives? how does the girl tie in to the plot?) is powerful enough can have the strength to destroy herself and everyone around her.

 
Anjali soon discovers that her ex-politician might not be as guilty as the city believes (What is the inciting event that makes her question the city? You can start with, "When the ex-politician reveals to her a little girl he's been protecting, Anjali soon discovers he is not as guilty...), but beholden to a much greaterserious underground threat. As she sinks deeper into the same mysteries that killed her fiancé, Anjali she is caught finds herself caught between continuing  her pursuit of justice for her fiance or endangering stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear. 
 
THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [x pages/chapters] below.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

Overall, enjoyed your premise and I can see a Marvel vibe (the politician reminds me of Fisk / Mariah Dillard).  Hope my markup helps. :)



#7 roxannepark

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 12:00 AM

Alright. Take two. A couple notes re: changes and not!changes:

  • I kept the "a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world" because some other people I showed it to got confused about the setting; they didn't know if it was a totally fantasy world or something from our own; took out the part about there being four of them though
  • Leaving out Anjali's age since I think the accountant + engagement parts imply she's an adult (which is good enough? IDK?)
  • I kind of hate the wording/flow in half of the sentences in this one (I know I started two sentences in a row with "as"... ugh), but I wanted feedback on whether or not the general content/core of it was better before I started agonizing over the polishing.

And thank you to everyone who's given feedback so far. It's been really helpful!

 

-_-_-_-

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world.

 

When her fiancé becomes obsessed with the trial of Jonathan DuBlanc—arrested for a series of failed human experiments seeking to biologically inject magic into magicless—and is subsequently murdered, Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is somehow beneath the death. The courts declare him innocent, so Anjali confronts him herself. However, instead of confessing his guilt, he offers his help.

 

Anjali soon discovers that DuBlanc might not be as guilty she thought, but beholden to an active, underground threat with experiments still ongoing. As they re-investigate DuBlanc’s supposed crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are always a single moment of lost control away from destroying themselves and everyone around them.

 

As her investigations draw the attention of the original experimenters, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#8 Spiffy McBang

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 01:18 PM

Things:

 

-'A secret magical haven carved out from our modern world' sounds a lot like Wakanda from the Black Panther comics. Wakanda can be placed on a map. Tell us where Gedema is.

 

-I think the end of the fourth paragraph ('...destroying themselves and...') is a stronger ending to your description of the plot. I'm not sure the information in the paragraph after that should be completely excised, but I do think the query would be stronger if you included it before or within the sentence where she's questioning the purpose of magic in the city.



#9 susanjett

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Posted 12 August 2017 - 01:51 PM

Thank you for the query crit, you had good, concrete suggestions that I'm going to put to good use. Very helpful--thank you!

 

So, reading your couple of notes after I read the query, I didn't need to know explicitly where this place was, it's magic, magic is an accepted part of life here, fine. I agree her age doesn't need to be laid out explicitly. She has a job, she's an adult--good enough for me. The general content /  core is definitely working--this is compelling even as it stands, but yes, I think you might be able to phrase some sentences a bit more gracefully. I made some attempts, noted below in red so you can see what I changed more easily.

 

Thank you for letting me read this, if the book's as interesting as the query, I'm sure I'll be picking it up in the bookstore in a couple of years!

 

Alright. Take two. A couple notes re: changes and not!changes:

  • I kept the "a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world" because some other people I showed it to got confused about the setting; they didn't know if it was a totally fantasy world or something from our own; took out the part about there being four of them though
  • Leaving out Anjali's age since I think the accountant + engagement parts imply she's an adult (which is good enough? IDK?)
  • I kind of hate the wording/flow in half of the sentences in this one (I know I started two sentences in a row with "as"... ugh), but I wanted feedback on whether or not the general content/core of it was better before I started agonizing over the polishing.

And thank you to everyone who's given feedback so far. It's been really helpful!

 

-_-_-_-

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world. (Good. This suggests all kinds of conflict without getting too specific yet. I like this.)

 

When her fiancé becomes obsessed with the trial of Jonathan DuBlanc—who is being tried for_____ after a series of human experiments failed to biologically inject magic into the magicless—and is subsequently murdered, Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is somehow behind it. The courts declare DuBlanc innocent, so Anjali confronts him herself. (Was he also arrested & tried for her fiance's death? It kind of sounds like it here. If you're just referring to his original trial for whatever, you might want to specify that here?) However, instead of confessing his guilt, he offers his help.

 

Anjali soon discovers that while DuBlanc might not be as guilty as she thought, he is beholden to an active, underground threat with experiments still ongoing (this is a really awkward construction, but without knowing more about the story, I can't really offer suggestions. an active, underground mafia? an active underground realm of demons? an active underground research center? that never stopped its experiments. As they learn more about what DuBlanc was accused of, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are only an instant of lost control away from destroying themselves and everyone around them. (I love this.)

 

Her investigations draw the attention of the original experimenters, and Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#10 Peter W

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Posted 13 August 2017 - 01:13 PM

Susanjett already caught a number of things, which I won't reiterate. Here's my two cents regarding the rest :)

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world. (This sets the scene nicely, I do think you need a stronger hook (first line), since this one isn't very active. It doesn't entice. Also, carved out from our modern world sounds nice but it doesn't really give me anything tangible. Is it like Harry Potter or is the magical city situated some place in the real world anyone can stumble upon? Is it in the sky, underground etc? Be as specific as possible)

 

When her fiancé becomes obsessed with the trial of Jonathan DuBlanc—arrested for a series of failed human experiments seeking to biologically inject magic into magicless—and is subsequently murdered, Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is somehow beneath the death (this is a long line packed with info. I had to read it twice. Could just be me, if not, consider breaking it up). The courts declare him innocent, so Anjali confronts him herself. However, instead of confessing his guilt, he offers his help.

 

Anjali soon discovers that DuBlanc might not be as guilty she thought, but beholden to an active, underground threat with experiments still ongoing. As they re-investigate DuBlanc’s supposed crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are always a single moment of lost control away from destroying themselves and everyone around them. Nice

 

As her investigations draw the attention of the original experimenters, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear. Who? I only know of her dead fiancé. This could just be me, but there are so many queries that end with something like; if X doesn't stop, everyone X knows will die. comes off as generic when I have no clue who it is. You need to make the stakes clearer. Make me care.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 
I like the twist with DuBlanc. Going in the right direction, keep it up!

"Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds."

#11 roxannepark

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Posted 15 August 2017 - 02:17 AM

Alright, I'm starting to have no idea whether my stylistic changes are making things better or worse, but here goes nothing. (Stylistic/wording/phrasing suggestions and/or edits would be greatly appreciated. After three straight hours of editing, I have absolutely no idea whether the thing flows or not anymore.)

 

-_-_-_-

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven set apart from our modern world.

 

When her fiancé becomes addicted to the televised trial of Jonathan DuBlanc and his fatal experiments that sought to inject magic into the magicless, Anjali assumes it’s simple celebrity obsession. That is, until her fiancé is murdered.

 

Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is behind the death, but when she confronts the man, instead of confessing, he offers his help. Spurred into investigating what she had assumed were DuBlanc's crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are only an instant of lost control away from destroying both themselves and everyone around them.

 

Her actions soon draw unwanted attention though, and when her family is threatened, Anjali must choose between pursuing justice for the dead or stopping before she jeopardizes the lives of the still living.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#12 eric balson

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Posted 20 August 2017 - 02:39 PM

Alright, I'm starting to have no idea whether my stylistic changes are making things better or worse, but here goes nothing. (Stylistic/wording/phrasing suggestions and/or edits would be greatly appreciated. After three straight hours of editing, I have absolutely no idea whether the thing flows or not anymore.)

 

-_-_-_-

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns Can you be more clear on this raising of suns. Does she create glowing orbs out of thin air or something?, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven set apart from our modern world.

 

When her fiancé becomes addicted to the televised trial of Jonathan DuBlanc and his fatal experiments that sought to inject magic into the magicless, Anjali assumes it’s simple celebrity obsession. That is, until her fiancé is murdered.

 

Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is behind the death, What makes her convinced of this? Her fiance was, after all, DuBlanc's biggest fan. Why would she think DuBlanc murdered someone who worshipped him? but when she confronts the man, instead of confessing, he offers his help. Spurred into investigating what she had assumed were DuBlanc's crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are only an instant of lost control away from destroying both themselves and everyone around them.

 

Her actions soon draw unwanted attention though, unwanted attention from whom? Who exactly is threatening your protagonist? and when her family is threatened, Anjali must choose between pursuing justice for the dead Instead of saying "the dead" say her fiance . The dead makes it seem like she's lost multiple people, also it sounds like she had no emotional attachment to him or stopping before she jeopardizes the lives of the still living. "The lives of the still living" sounds awkward. Phrase it better.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.



#13 MelodyBelle

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 06:10 AM

Solid hook and interesting premise. A few sentences need to be re-worked for clarity, but overall it's a great query. 

 

Melody

Alright. Take two. A couple notes re: changes and not!changes:

  • I kept the "a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world" because some other people I showed it to got confused about the setting; they didn't know if it was a totally fantasy world or something from our own; took out the part about there being four of them though
  • Leaving out Anjali's age since I think the accountant + engagement parts imply she's an adult (which is good enough? IDK?)
  • I kind of hate the wording/flow in half of the sentences in this one (I know I started two sentences in a row with "as"... ugh), but I wanted feedback on whether or not the general content/core of it was better before I started agonizing over the polishing.

And thank you to everyone who's given feedback so far. It's been really helpful!

 

-_-_-_-

 

I'm seeking representation for my 122,000 word urban fantasy, (I'm sure you've already heard this, but this word count will turn away a few agents before they even read the hook. Personally, I'd give them a chance to get interested in the story before they make assumptions, so I'd put this at the bottom of the query.) THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE. Given your interest in [INSERT REASONS], I thought it might be a good fit for your list.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven carved out from our modern world. (I'm already interested. Great hook!)

 

When her fiancé becomes obsessed with the trial of Jonathan DuBlanc (Why? What does it matter to him? What does her fiancé do?)arrested for a series of failed human experiments seeking to biologically inject magic into magicless—and is subsequently murdered, (this comes off a little wordy. And I'm not sure who was murdered? The human experiments?) Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is somehow beneath the death. (Do you mean behind the death?) The courts declare him innocent, so Anjali confronts him herself. (If she is an accountant, why does she confront him? What is the connection to her?)  However, instead of confessing his guilt, he offers his help.

 

Anjali soon discovers that DuBlanc might not be as guilty she thought, but beholden to an active, underground threat with experiments still ongoing. (Could change to "with ongoing experiments") As they re-investigate DuBlanc’s supposed crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are always a single moment of lost control (I get what you're saying here, but my mind stumbled over it as I read) away from destroying themselves and everyone around them.

 

As her investigations draw the attention of the original experimenters, Anjali finds herself caught between continuing her pursuit of justice or stopping before she endangers the lives of everyone she still holds dear.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

 

Thank you for your time and consideration.

 

 

Please reciprocate:http://agentquerycon...-contemporary/ 



#14 yumaseven

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Posted 21 August 2017 - 07:56 AM

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns This could be described in more detail. But I love the imagery of creating your own sunsets, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven set apart from our modern world. Is it under a tree? Or is the city inside a separate magical dimension?

 

When her fiancé becomes addicted to the televised trial So, their technology is like ours? of Jonathan DuBlanc and his fatal experiments that sought to inject magic into the magicless, Anjali assumes it’s simple celebrity obsession. Does Anjali have problems with the powerful citizens before the deaths? That is, until her fiancé is murdered.

 

Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is behind the death This could be a separate sentence, but when she confronts the man, instead of confessing, he offers his help. Spurred into investigating what she had assumed were DuBlanc's crimes do they end up working together, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful magical or political? are only an instant of lost control away from destroying both themselves and everyone around them. I wonder if she’s also tempted at the thought of getting her own magic.

 

Her actions soon draw unwanted attention though, and when her family is threatened, Anjali must choose between pursuing justice for the dead or stopping before she jeopardizes the lives of the still living. Nice ending. It could be reworked to be a bit clearer. Maybe (Anjali must choose between justice for the dead and life for the living). Though, that rewording may be too simplistic for what you are going for.

 

THE CITY BENEATH THE TREE is a stand alone novel with series potential. Per your guidelines, I've pasted the first [X PAGES] below.

All in all, I like the basic premise of the story. But do the stakes ever rise above her immediate circle? Or do they involve the whole city. You allude to “destroying everyone around them”, but the threat isn’t completely made clear by the ending of the query. Either way, the book should be a good read.



#15 callalilly

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Posted 02 September 2017 - 02:21 PM

Sorry for late return. Hope it might be useful.

 

Anjali Prasad missed out on the magic that the rest of her family was born with. While others summon lost keys and raise artificial suns, Anjali works as an ordinary accountant in the tree-covered metropolis of Gedéma, a secret magical haven set apart from our modern world.

 

When her fiancé becomes addicted to the televised trial of Jonathan DuBlanc, whose fatal experiments that sought to inject magic into the magicless, Anjali assumes it’s her fiance's binge-watching is simply a celebrity obsession. That is, until her fiancé is murdered.

 

Anjali is convinced that DuBlanc is behind the death (I thought he was on trial?), but when she confronts the man, instead of confessing, he offers his help. Spurred into investigating what she had assumed were DuBlanc's crimes, Anjali begins to question what having magic means in a city where its weakest citizens are disregarded and its most powerful are only moments away from losing control and destroying both themselves and everyone around them.

 

Her actions soon draw unwanted attention though, and when her family is threatened (from who?), Anjali must choose between pursuing justice for the dead or stopping (stopping what?) before she jeopardizes the lives of the still living.

 

(I think this sounds really interesting. You've got a cool plot and a difficult choice: does she choose the more selfish choice to gain magic or sacrifice that happiness for those who belittle her. One thing i suggest is address more about DuBlanc, I never knew if she agreed to letting him help her or not. Also include more conflict if you like -this is afterall the man she thinks killed her fiance. Overall really interesting. Good luck!)


My work in progress: http://agentquerycon...again-ya/page-2

 





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