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THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE, paranormal - Revised 3/19


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#1 Bibliophyl

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 03:04 PM

Thanks so much for all of the comments! In case anyone else wants to chime in, I've posted a (second) revised version in Post #14. 

 

A quick note: I've had one full request from this query but have also racked up almost 40 rejections. I'm trying to gauge whether it's the query or the genre, as I know vampires aren't exactly hot right now. I can live with that as I can't control industry trends, but I want to make sure I'm putting my best foot forward. I would very much appreciate some fresh eyes! Thanks!

 

Dear [agent],

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong romantic and historical elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.
 
When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. He's also the ancestor of her crush, the quiet, junk-food-loving Moritz, whose family still rules the small principality of Transylvania. Vlad agrees to spare her life if she helps him reunite with his equally undead wife—a task which unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.
 
As romance blossoms between Lydia and Moritz, an unlikely friendship grows between Lydia and Vlad. Their search for Vlad's wife takes them from the great cities of Europe to an isolated ranch in Montana, where they find her, having given up hope that her husband will ever return. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.
 
But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband, and when Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago, and sparks a disaster that threatens the lives and humanity of the people Lydia and Vlad love most.
 
[contact info and sendoff]


#2 Dasein

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 04:20 PM

This query is quite polished already, so I have just nit-picky things to mention. First, describing Moritz as "junk-food loving" is a bit of a turn-off. It brings the image of someone young and pudgy to my mind at least. Is that your intention? Is he an unlikely crush?

Next, I think you can do without this clause all together: —"a task which unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried." Too much is jammed together here. When reading it I didn't really pay attention.

That's all for now. I hope you can use these little suggestions to make the query even better.

#3 JRUET

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 04:43 PM

Dear [agent],

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong romantic and historical elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories. I would recommend moving this paragraph to the end so you can jump right into the "meat" of it.
 
When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. He's also the ancestor of her crush, the quiet, junk-food-loving Moritz, whose family still rules the small principality of Transylvania. Vlad agrees to spare her life if she helps him reunite with his equally undead wife—a task which that unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried. I like all these things as plot devices, but this sentence is a mouthful. Try reading it aloud, then break it where you run out a breath (this will only work if you don't talk like me and the Girlmore Girls- i.e. 1,000,000 miles per hour ;)
 
As romance blossoms between Lydia and Moritz, an unlikely friendship grows between Lydia and Vlad I might leave out the romance bit here and just jump to the friendship with Vlad. it's less expected and therefore more interesting. Their search for Vlad's wife takes them from the great cities of Europe to an isolated ranch in Montana, (where they find her, having given up hope that her husband will ever return.) I'd give this bit it's own sentence. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife. This made me smile
 
But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband, and when Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago, and sparks a disaster that threatens the lives and humanity of the people Lydia and Vlad love most.
 
[contact info and sendoff]
 
Overall this is very well written and interesting. Most of my comments are housekeeping as I think you have a strong query here. If anything I'd focus on Lydia and Vlad and leave out Mortz, he doesn't seem pivotal in the query at least. Good luck!!
 


#4 JonasJ

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 08:44 PM

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead, Vlad Dracula. He's also the ancestor of her crush of Moritz, whose family still rules the small principality of Transylvania. Vlad agrees to spare her life if she helps him reunite with his equally undead wife—a task that unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.

(Maybe if you tell us who is she, or something of her life before her love of history leads her into Transylvania it could be better)

Their search for Vlad's wife takes them from the great cities of Europe to an isolated ranch in Montana, where they find her, having given up hope that her husband will ever return. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his vampire wife.

This made me smile (me too, I did smiled like an idiot. That’s good. Maybe because I never imagined Vlad being so nice)

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret, and when Lydia finds out, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago, and sparks a disaster that threatens the lives and humanity of the people Lydia and Vlad love most.

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is a paranormal romance packed with historical elements. It is complete at 83k words. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. The novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.


I Loved it!! I am not fan of vampires but I like the historical elements. And it is well-written too. Keep working on it. You will find the agent.

Edited by JonasJ, 12 March 2018 - 08:50 PM.


#5 Springfield

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Posted 12 March 2018 - 09:28 PM

 

A quick note: I've had one full request from this query but have also racked up almost 40 rejections. I'm trying to gauge whether it's the query or the genre, as I know vampires aren't exactly hot right now. I can live with that as I can't control industry trends, but I want to make sure I'm putting my best foot forward. I would very much appreciate some fresh eyes! Thanks!

 

Dear [agent],

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong romantic and historical elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.
 
When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. He's also the ancestor of her crush, the quiet, junk-food-loving Moritz, whose family still rules the small principality of Transylvania. Vlad agrees to spare her life if she helps him reunite with his equally undead wife—a task which unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.
 
As romance blossoms between Lydia and Moritz, an unlikely friendship grows between Lydia and Vlad. Their search for Vlad's wife takes them from the great cities of Europe to an isolated ranch in Montana, where they find her, having given up hope that her husband will ever return. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.
 
But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband, and when Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago, and sparks a disaster that threatens the lives and humanity of the people Lydia and Vlad love most.
 
You switch from Lydia to Vlad for the entire rest of the query. He seems like the MC -- she seems like a plot device. Most of this is also vague and cliche-ridden. If she's your MC, what is her problem, and the stakes. If Vlad is, I presume his problem is that he can't find his wife, but I dunno what the stakes are. I'm also not seeing anything that suggests any of it is set in the past save the line telling me it is. It sounds as if it's all in the present.
 
[contact info and sendoff]

 



#6 tonystar1

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 05:04 AM

Lydia's passion, and ensuing peril don't come across here.  I get the impression that you've packed a lot into this work and found it hard to decide on what to focus on for the query.  It may be because, as a writer, you've tried to make the horror situation "real" in that her love for history has caused her top open up some kind of Pandora's Box ... and this detracts from a sense of peril.  I'd think of the scariest scene in the novel when I rewrite this, and use the terror she feels, which is what you want the reader to feel.  



#7 Bibliophyl

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 03:51 PM

New version:

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.  

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of answers for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century. An unlikely friendship develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.  

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband that could tear them apart forever. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago. When Lydia attempts to resolve their ancient feud, she might just end up six feet under too.



#8 TeaTime

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 08:53 PM

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s (I'd maybe switch "1470s" to be before the "present") to tell two intertwined stories.  (I would also vote to put this paragraph at the end of the query.)

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  (This is a bit vague. It feels more like the cliff-hanger set of endings to a query)

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of answers for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century (Is there any comedy in this story, as this feels like an easy bit (though I guess it's been done before in multiple movies)). An unlikely friendship develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down ("Settles down" keeps tripping me up, it sounds too much like the end to a story. I'd reword it to not sound so final) to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting (Funny) vampire wife.  

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband that could tear them apart forever. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago. (I know this is all kept intentionally very vague, being a big secret & all that you don't want to spoil. However, it's a few sentences of extreme vagueness.) When Lydia attempts to resolve their ancient feud, she might just end up six feet under too.

 

My question is who's the Main Character? Is it supposed to be split up evenly between Lydia & Vlad? Because it does feel like Vlad's story, with Lydia popping in & out of the query.

 

Does the story also spend actual time back in the 1400s? The query currently feels like it takes place in modern times with some exposition or maybe some brief flashbacks to the past. But with some clarification on those things, I think you'll be able to make this an even better query. Good luck  :smile: 


Feel Free to Check Out My Current Query Letter Here, Thank You


#9 GeorgeIsCurious

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 08:55 PM

 

New version:

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.  The part in red I would cut as it is shown throughout the query.

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  This last sentence you should place at the end of the query as you are still developing the novel, and that summarizes the rest of the novel following the pitch.

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of the answers to for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century. An unlikely friendship develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.  --> Make this part idealistic like "Vlad readies to settle down and enjoy eternal bliss with..." as opposed to saying he does.

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband that could tear them apart forever. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago. When Lydia attempts In attempting to resolve their ancient feud, she Lydia might just end up six feet under too.

 

This is a strong query all in all, just needs some tightening and switching around plot elements. Incorporate my revisions and work from there.



#10 Springfield

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Posted 13 March 2018 - 09:05 PM

 

New version:

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.  

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of answers for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century. An unlikely friendship develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.  

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband that could tear them apart forever. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago. When Lydia attempts to resolve their ancient feud, she might just end up six feet under too.

 

 

Same comments apply as from the first version...



#11 Bibliophyl

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Posted 14 March 2018 - 07:55 AM

Thanks all for your comments!

 

 

 

My question is who's the Main Character? Is it supposed to be split up evenly between Lydia & Vlad? Because it does feel like Vlad's story, with Lydia popping in & out of the query.

 

Does the story also spend actual time back in the 1400s? The query currently feels like it takes place in modern times with some exposition or maybe some brief flashbacks to the past. But with some clarification on those things, I think you'll be able to make this an even better query. Good luck  :smile: 

 

Lydia and Vlad are dual protagonists but as you can see I'm struggling to give them equal weight in the query! The story is split half and half between the present and the 1470s; everything I've read about query writing (Queryshark, etc.) says that the best way to deal with different POVs/timelines is to focus on one on the query and have a sentence addressing the narrative structure, so that's the tack I've taken here. I feel like it would be too jumbled if I tried to mash both in. 

 

 

Same comments apply as from the first version...

 

It would be very helpful if you could point out where you're seeing the vagueness and cliches. I'm afraid I'm too close to the work to see it clearly for myself right now!



#12 Springfield

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Posted 14 March 2018 - 11:44 AM

Sure thing :)

 

 

New version:

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s to tell two intertwined stories.  

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Just btw, nothing says he's undead or that he'd know she was or what the heck is going on here.. zombies, spells, I dunno.Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  <--- this is entirely vague and cliche and says nothing. Their search unearths secrets... a quest for revenge better left buried... etc. This is where the MC's PROBLEM goes.

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of answers for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century. This just makes it sound like they're a romcom duo traipsing about the 21st century pulling him out of traffic. What does the MC (whomever that is) DO? An unlikely friendship cliche and repeating the previous. develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. Ok, so she's doing something, though I still don't know what her problem is. After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.  If Lydia is the MC, what does this have to do with her, if he is, then his problem (finding his wife) seems solved.

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret from her husband that could tear them apart forever. <--- cliche. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. <--- cliche. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy who put him in the ground five centuries ago. <---vague When Lydia attempts to resolve their ancient feud, she might just end up six feet under too.<-- groanworthy cliche

 

 

Character. Problem. Stakes.



#13 ALNoelle

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Posted 14 March 2018 - 02:12 PM

 

New version:

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements. It focuses on Vlad the Impaler, the 15th century inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. ​Sounds enticing!  Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative, alternating between the present day and the 1470s ​*Your query doesn't show the alternating worlds.  to tell two intertwined stories.  ​Unnecessary

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. Their search unearths centuries-old secrets, fratricide​Not sure this word works here, but my opinion is completely subjective here, and a quest for revenge which may be better left buried.  ​There's vagueness here. The word "secrets" can mean so many things, and this makes it lose any punch or oomph. Is there any way to be more detailed here without giving away anything?

 

In Vlad, Lydia finds a history nerd's dream—a source of answers for all of her questions about life in the medieval era. In Lydia, Vlad finds a guide to the baffling technological and societal innovations of the 21st century.​I love how they bond over their differences.  An unlikely friendship develops out of their tenuous bargain. Through savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software using a portrait, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana. ​This sentenced bogged me down. I think something like " Using savvy face-recognition software, Lydia locates Vlad's wife on an isolated ranch in Montana". It cuts the word count and still conveys the message.  After a joyful reunion, Vlad settles down to enjoy eternal domestic bliss. with his hotheaded, gun-toting vampire wife.   ​Unnecessary

 

But Vlad's wife is keeping a secret ​Like I mentioned before, using "secrets" is tough. It's too vague. from her husband that could tear them apart forever. When Lydia finds out what it is, she thinks Vlad deserves to know, even if it destroys his newfound happiness. His wife's secret brings Vlad face-to-face with the enemy ​This is vague as well. If this enemy is the antagonist (or at least one of them) it'd be nice to know who, what he/she are. EX: face-to-face with (NAME) the vampire (or vampire slayer or whatever this person is) who put him in the ground five centuries ago. When Lydia attempts to resolve their ancient feud, she might just end up six feet under too.

 

 

I love your concept here! It seems interesting and promises twists and turns. I think one of the things that would help is to be as specific as possible. I worked with an editor who was relentless on this. She kept asking me why does this happen? and why is this important? and others of the same nature. It wasn't until I got down to the nitty gritty that things really popped. She also told me to shy away from using the word "secrets".

 

Overall, this story seems very intriguing! I hope I have helped in a small way!



#14 Bibliophyl

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Posted 19 March 2018 - 07:28 PM

Second revision:

 

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife.

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next.

 

As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst between Vlad's wife and his murderer. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine.

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence.

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated!

 

Thanks in advance!



#15 IndusiumGriseum

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 09:08 AM

Second revision:

 

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. (Nice hook! You got to all of the important points while making it super interesting!)

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next.

 

As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst between Vlad's wife and his murderer. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine. (I see that you're unsure about this paragraph. Perhaps you could hint at the murderer's intent in the last sentence?)

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence.

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated!

 

Thanks in advance!

 

This is great! I'm sorry I'm useless and can't offer more advice. I'd request pages if I were an agent, :)


HIRE ME AS YOUR SENSITIVITY READER!: https://www.glanzman...ityreading.com/


#16 ALNoelle

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 11:56 AM

Second revision:

 

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. ​You did an amazing job with this revision. So clear cut.

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her ​this reads awkward to me. I think its the ending with "into her" part. Would something like "To stop him from draining her blood" work. I don't know. Really subjective, but I think it helps the flow., Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next.

 

As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst ​this is completely my subjective opinion, but this word doesn't do it for me. Maybe rendezvous? but seriously it could just be the time of day I'm reading it, and such. It really is completely fine the way it is. Just writing my first impression. between Vlad's wife and his murderer. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine. ​Hmm. This is a tricky one. Even as you have it here, its still vague, and we want to serious stakes to go with your amazing query. We need to know how they are deadly without getting bogged down. I'm going to think this one over and revisit this part in a day or so. 

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence.

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated!

 

Thanks in advance!

 

This version is pretty awesome! Once the 4th para is cleared up, I see it getting lots of attention. Great job editing!



#17 mkuriel

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 06:54 PM

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood [ambiguous in it's implications. Does he really want her blood? Did he already get a taste? it could be worded more clearly either way: But Vlad stops, his fangs hovering over her neck as he offers a to spare her life...] : he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife.

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next. As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims. [the real problems with these sentences is that they're redundant and out of order. Suggest leading with Lydia's credentials and then giving a sense of time and maybe cutting unnecessary backstory]

 

Talking fast, Lydia accepts the bargain citing modern research skills. Intrigued by her fearful babbling about internet stalking and face-recognition software, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But as her search stretches into a second week, Vlad starts reminiscing about drinking people dry before jamming severed heads on stakes. [show the darkness and impatience] Lydia, however, was stalling, afraid to tell Vlad that his wife betrayed him to his murderer. [see below]

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: [vague] a long-ago tryst between Vlad's wife and his murderer. [this is good... feels like it needs more drive though. Maybe a sentence about how she's afraid to deliver this bad news without some sort of good news. That sentence could end up on the end of the last paragraph... added a suggestion above]  Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine. [Vague. You could replace this sentence with two that actually contain some juicy hints about the conclusion of the story without giving it all away (do that in the synopsis). As is, it's meant to seal reader interest and doesn't really say anything besides, "It gets really good from there on, but I'm not telling you how!"]

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence.

 

Hope this helps, Good luck!



#18 PureZhar3

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 08:03 PM

Second revision:

 

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. ​This is a good hook, but its length takes away from its power.

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. ​Okay, I like the joke, but it's blatancy makes it less funny. Try slipping it in and you'll seem more clever... "Despite expecting a brutal monster, Lydia finds chivalry is undead as Vlad models perfect fifteenth century courtesy. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next. ​If you give us a specific detail, it will be much more frightening that vague "darkness". I fear a "man who murdered three of his servants for gossiping about him" more than I fear a "man full of darkness"

 

As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst ​I have no idea what this is (well, I do now, I looked it up... you might want to say affair) between Vlad's wife and his murderer. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine. ​I assume what you mean by this is that instead of reuniting him with his wife, Lydia sets in motion a series of terrible events. But this comes off more as the secret doesn't achieve eternal bliss, which is obviously a misreading given that it makes no sense. You may want to rephrase slightly to make that clearer

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates alternating between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence.

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated! ​I could be misunderstanding what you mean, but I think it's pretty clear from the fourth paragraph that there's more to the story. Details are expected to be forthcoming in the book. If that isn't what you mean, feel free to tell me and I'll try to give you my thoughts on what you're actually asking.

 

Thanks in advance!

​My biggest issue with the above  query is that a lot of the phrasing feels awkward or extensive to me, when it could be more succinct and easy to follow (and you could fit more *important* details in). Overall, however, the story sounds fascinating and I think you have a really strong idea to build around :)


If you have time, I'd appreciate it if you took a look at my query: http://agentquerycon...-realismsci-fi/


#19 AnnDayleview

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 11:39 PM

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust, Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood [and] he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife.

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth-century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. [Nice voice!] But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, She's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next.

 

As the search for his wife stretches on [Show how she's going about this search], Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst between Vlad's wife and his murderer [I want to know more about this bit]. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine. [I feel like this is missing some of the stakes. I'm wondering why Lydia doesn't just blow off this creepy vampire and fly back to Oxford. I think if you tighten up the first bit and condense this down into two paragraphs it may come across clearer.]

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence. [Neat!]

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated!

 

I totally see where you are coming from and I think if you focus on what Lydia want's overall the query and this information are going to be a lot stronger. Not to do some self-promotion but, if you are having issues as to what to include and what not to include I made this query tool that helps narrow it down. Hope it helps!

 

https://www.anndayle...-Idea-Generator



#20 Nonicks

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Posted 21 March 2018 - 03:29 AM

Second revision:

 

Dear [agent]:

 

When Lydia's love of history leads her into the crypt of a medieval castle in Transylvania, she (I don't see why this is important. It only brings more questions, for example: is it a time travel book? it might seem like time travel because you state she loves history and then lands in a medievak castle... I would erase this sentence)  accidentally awakens a long-dead prince infamous for cruelty and bloodlust (I've never heard of a kind and nice proce. for some reasn, they're all cruel :/ ), Vlad Dracula. But Vlad wants more than her blood: he'll spare her life if she helps him reunite with his beloved undead wife. (interesting and original!)

 

To stop him from sinking his fangs into her, Lydia accepts the bargain. Instead of the brutal monster Lydia expects, Vlad becomes a model of fifteenth century courtesy and respect. Chivalry, apparently, is undead. But Lydia knows that darkness lurks behind his courtly façade. A student of history at Oxford, she's read accounts of the atrocities he committed centuries ago, and worries his violent urges will turn on her next.

 

As the search for his wife stretches on, Vlad's patience wears thin. Lydia will have to combine her historical research skills with savvy internet stalking and face-recognition software (isn't it the 15th century?)  in order to find this mysterious woman. If Vlad's patience runs out, Lydia might become another of his many victims.

 

But Lydia's search unearths a secret better left buried: a long-ago tryst between Vlad's wife and his (Vlad's murderer?) murderer. Far from achieving eternal domestic bliss for Vlad, the consequences are deadlier than Lydia or Vlad could ever imagine (a bit vague. What does Lydia want? what is hear dream? like outside the story).

 

THE VAMPIRE'S WIFE is adult paranormal fiction with strong historical and romantic (another romance between a vampire and a human?) elements, focusing on Vlad the Impaler, the inspiration for Bram Stoker's Dracula character. Complete at 83,000 words, the novel is a dual narrative; it alternates between Lydia's modern world and Vlad's medieval existence. (this is an original twist, in my opinion)

 

[bio and sendoff]

 

***

I'm struggling with the 4th paragraph: I want to hint that there's more to the story than Lydia finding Vlad's wife, and I don't want it to feel too vague, but I can't really make it more specific without getting into more of the plot which will bog the query down. Any thoughts are appreciated!

 

Thanks in advance!






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