Hello guys. I know it's been awhile since I've posted an update but I have another one here. It's been a crazy last month or so on my end, and I've only just recently been able to get back into the swing of things. Let me know what you think of this version of the query. It's a little bit more intense, but I feel like it's appropriate for the tone of the novel. Thank you guys so much!
When twenty-one-year old Ace Thompson leaves everything behind to move to New York, he doesn’t plan on falling in love with Ava Grace—a blossoming actress, passionate activist, and sufferer of schizophrenia. I feel like I've seen a ton of hooks that follow some format of "Hero didn't plan on falling in love with Love Interest." There's nothing wrong with this hook, per se, but it's not particularly unique.
Ace has always sought a high that would chase away his negative self-image after being the victim of sexual abuse as well as the death of his father. This is a rather clunky sentence. Read it out loud and you'll see it runs on a bit. Coke, pills, and sex have become the lifelines that he clings to for any sort of clarity in life. But after meeting Ava, he discovers that she has a way of making him feel as if he’s finally on the right path. Maybe, just maybe, he could figure out a way to make sense of the world.
Living with the mental disorder passed down from her mother, Ava struggles with her own self-image and is in an almost constant state of fear with her delusional thinking. With Ace by her side, she slowly begins to enjoy life again Can you give specifics? What do they do together? It'll help show the relationship between them. and the two realize that, together, they can better handle their faults.
A darker side forms in Ava as she stops taking her meds, wanting to prove she can lead a normal life with Ace, but her hallucinations and delusions increase. I think this sentence can be better as well. It is a bit run-on-y, and it's just not sitting right with me. Not a fan of "A darker side forms". Maybe just start it as, "But Ava stops taking her meds, wanting to prove she can lead a normal life with Ace." You'd then have to find a way to rewrite the latter portion, but I think it would flow better. Ace must pour his heart into keeping the woman he’s fallen in love with from going over the edge. But Ava sees only one way to help herself—downing a bottle of pills. So, there's me knowing that people with mental illness don't always think logically, but then there's also wanting to see her version of logic. Like she knows things work with her meds, so why isn't she just like, "Whelp, this didn't work, guess the meds are better than nothing." So can you show us a bit more, where she's maybe like, "The meds are cheating/hiding the real me/show that I'm not good enough for Ace." Whatever her irrational logic is, so we know that much more of what they have to overcome.
NEON BLUE is a literary romance complete at 71,000 words.
I never read romance, so there's a few things in here that I can't tell if they're actually problems or they're just the tropes of the genre. I'll let some other people speak up on the story itself while I focused on the query. The biggest problem is that I'm not seeing a ton to set it strongly apart from other similar stories. And, again, maybe some of that is my ignorance of the genre, but not all of it. Specifics will definitely help in that. Good luck.