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Pieces of Alice- Will critique back :)

Womens Fiction

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#61 Kelz1990

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Posted 22 May 2018 - 10:26 AM

Newest versions are always here. 

VERSION #10-- Only small changes in this version. I think I'm half way there! 

 

Dear Ms. [Agent],

 

 

Most would say that falling in love is a blessing. But,  - but not Alice Bakers. Her violent ex, Seth, labels her as dull and predictable. To defy the respected police officer, she commits a crime. (I think you should mention early on that Seth's a police officer - that threw me in for a loop when I saw it in this sentence all of a sudden)

 

A small crime for starters. (I don't think this line is necessary) She trespasses on a hotel property (What kind of hotel is it? A luxury, five-star hotel? Or just something along the lines of a Motel 6?) for a quiet getaway to mull things over and harden her defenses. In her illicit attempt to change, she meets charming hotel manager Jake, and the two establish a playful, romantic connection. However, their relationship enrages Seth. His pleas to win her back quickly deteriorate into a beating. Alice’s resilience motivates her to fight back, and, this time, she is not alone. Jake is by her side. 

 

To separate the couple, Seth abducts Alice. Chained up and starved like a neglected pet for years, Seth gets his Alice fix whenever he desires. (Fix this sentence to make it sound like Alice is being chained, and not Seth) The thought of whether Jake is married or searching for her distracts Alice as she tries to execute a flawed escape plan. What are the stakes?

 

 

PIECES OF ALICE is an adult romance completed at 98,000 words.

 

I'm seeing goals and obstacles (mostly involving Seth), but what are the stakes? What happens if she doesn't execute her plan or come up with another means of escape and defeat Seth for good?

 

If you'd like to return the favor, here's a link to my query. See Post 10 for the latest revision: http://agentquerycon...ion-in-post-10/



#62 yawriter

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Posted 23 May 2018 - 08:07 PM

 

Newest versions are always here. 

VERSION #10-- Only small changes in this version. I think I'm half way there! 

 

Dear Ms. [Agent],

 

 

Most would say that falling in love is a blessing. But, not Alice Bakers. Her violent ex, Seth, labels her as dull and predictable. To defy the respected police officer, she commits a crime.

 

A small crime for starters. She trespasses on hotel property for a quiet getaway to mull things over and harden her defenses. In her illicit attempt to change, she meets charming hotel manager Jake, and the two establish a playful, romantic connection. However, their relationship enrages Seth. His pleas to win her back quickly deteriorate into a beating. Alice’s resilience motivates her to fight back and, this time, she is not alone. Jake is by her side. 

 

To separate the couple, Seth abducts Alice. Chained up and starved like a neglected pet for years, Seth gets his Alice fix whenever he desires. The thought of whether Jake is married or searching for her distracts Alice as she tries to execute a flawed escape plan. This makes her sound weak. "Oh man, I'm held prisoner by my psychotic ex, but wondering if dear Jake has moved on really distrats me from the horror of it all."

This last paragraph makes it sound like the book takes an abrupt genre turn into a gritty crime thriller or something.  I'm also not very familiar with the "romance" genre, either.  I feel like you could almost end the query on the bit about Seth abducting Alice.  When you mention "years" it sounds like this is covering much more than the first act of the novel, even if it's not the case.

 

PIECES OF ALICE is an adult romance completed at 98,000 words...

 

 

AH! Thanks for pointing that out. That was my sad attempt to make sure that Jake was tied to the story instead of him appearing and then disappearing, but I just took a break from the query for a few days and I definitely see the flaw. Since the book IS more focused on the romance, I'm wondering if I just should start all the way over... and talk more about Jake than Seth...so many conflicts! Thanks for your help!!



#63 yawriter

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Posted 23 May 2018 - 08:08 PM

Romance, as I understand it, is a genre with specific expectations. Years of being chained in a basement and raped does not fit what readers of romance are typically looking for. I see that last paragraph REALLY turning readers of this query off.

And even if you don’t decide to market this as romance, the fact that your story jumps from escaping an abuser and finding love to becoming a sex slave for the abuser for YEARS isn’t appealing for other reasons. For example, it negates whatever emotional investment you may have built into Alice’s journey up to being kidnapped. What difference does Jake make when she’s starving and a subject of repeated rape? The idea that she would even care about romance in such a situation is hard to swallow.

 

So, it is borderline dark romance genre, so that's what I was going for, but I just read a couple dark romances and realized, my novel is not as graphic as those. So it's probably more woman's fiction. Also, Thanks for pointing out that last part. That was my sad attempt to make sure that Jake was tied to the story instead of him appearing and then disappearing, but I just took a break from the query for a few days and I definitely see the flaw. Since the book IS more focused on the romance, I'm wondering if I just should start all the way over... and talk more about Jake than Seth...so many conflicts! I appreciate the help!



#64 punitrastogi

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Posted 24 May 2018 - 08:04 AM

Wow!

 

This is completely different from what I saw the last time.

 

New aspects to the story, that changes the perspective from a violent love-triangle to an actual thriller.

 

Kudos to you for achieving that.

Newest versions are always here. 

 

Notes:

1. I am aware that this still needs a lot of work, but I couldn't have gotten this far without everyone helping me! Big appreciation to everyone in this supportive community!

2. Addressing what a few of you have mentioned, I have attempted to tie the hook back into the rest of the query in this version.

3. I have changed the ending so that the focus is more on Alice rather than Jake

4. After reading more books in this topic, I think my genre borders woman's fiction, rather than romance :)

VERSION #11
 

Dear Ms. [Agent],

 

Most desire to fall in love. But, not Alice Bakers(how about "Alice Bakers wants to fall out it"?). Especially after ever since her manipulative ex, Seth, turned s violent. Because he is a respected police officer, the only way for Alice to cleanse herself from his influence is to commit a crime. (The last statement doesn't work for me and/because I don't really agree with it. Maybe you can end it in a better way?)

 

For Alice, a small crime is a good start. She like trespassing es on a hotel property is a good start. to As she lays by the hotel pool and mulls things over,(comma) her quiet time is disrupted by the Charming hotel manager Jake.(period) disrupts her quiet time, and his playfulness shatters Alice’s hardened defenses, forever changing her openness (changing her openness should be a bad thing right? like he made her lose her interest in falling in love) to falling in love. However, this relationship enrages Seth. When his pleas to win her back deteriorate into a beating, Alice’s resilience and Jake's company motivates her to fight back.(just tried to reduce words there) And this time, she is not alone. Jake is by her side.

 

To separate the two love birds, Seth abducts Alice. Chained up and starved for years like a neglected pet for years, (So there is a time leap. Then the question is, what makes Alice try and break free after years in captivity?) she must find the strength and courage to successfully execute a flawed escape plan.

 

PIECES OF ALICE is woman’s fiction completed at 98,000 words...

 

Substantial jump since the last time I was here.

Just wanted to add and shuffle a few things around.

You can neglect them if you feel they dont add value.

Happy to help.

 

A new version of my query is up if you want to take a look. :)







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