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Our Lady of Death -- YA Fantasy


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#1 mindy24601

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Posted 11 August 2019 - 03:59 PM

Unfortunately I have not been successful in the query world, and was wondering if anyone out there would be able to take a look and give some feedback. I feel like it might be a little wordy in some parts. 

Will reciprocate! :D 

 

Update 2.0

 

Attn: Fantastic Agent X

 

Dear Mr/Ms X: 

 

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case; plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper, she now escorts wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

Permanently. 

But Luz’s half-hearted efforts to straighten up accidentally uncover a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will force Luz to choose between her new friends reputation, her own reputation, and the existence of the Afterlife as it’s currently known.  

I am currently seeking representation for OUR LADY OF DEATH, a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on Dante’s Divine Comedy, OUR LADY OF DEATH combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the skeletal personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

Sincerely,

 
Mindy Maxwell

 

Attn: Fantastic Agent X

 

Dear Mr/Ms X: 

 

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case, plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper to escort wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

Permanently. 

But Luz’s plight sheds light on a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will threaten the entire concept of the Afterlife as it’s known.  

I am currently seeking representation for Our Lady of Death, a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on the Divine Comedy, Our Lady of Death combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

Sincerely,

 
Mindy Maxwell


#2 lnloft

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Posted 11 August 2019 - 09:23 PM

 

Unfortunately I have not been successful in the query world, and was wondering if anyone out there would be able to take a look and give some feedback. I feel like it might be a little wordy in some parts. 

Will reciprocate! :D 

 

Attn: Fantastic Agent X

 

Dear Mr/Ms X: 

 

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case, plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper to escort wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. There's a bit of wordiness for this first sentence. I wonder if we need the part about Senora Muerte? From your housekeeping it seems that is a character from Latino folklore, but it doesn't mean much to me right now, and that might be making things a little confusing. So maybe just leave the Senora Muerte explanation for the end. After all, the story takes place before she becomes that, so it's technically not relevant for an inciting incident. But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

 

Permanently. 

 

But Luz’s plight sheds light on a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. How does her plight shed light on this? Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

 

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will threaten the entire concept of the Afterlife as it’s known.  Hmm, this isn't bad, but I'm trying to be nit-picky. I wonder if clarifying a bit of what you mean by "threatening the entire concept of the Afterlife" and/or presenting it as a choice for Luz (i.e. Luz can either prove her innocence or destroy the known Afterlife) might make it more powerful.

 

I am currently seeking representation for Our Lady of Death OUR LADY OF DEATH , a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on the Divine Comedy, Our Lady of Death combines the TV show Supernatural I love Supernatural with a burning passion, but for comps you're a lot safer sticking with books. with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

 

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

Sincerely,

 
Mindy Maxwell

 

Honestly, this query is fairly solid. You can make some few tweaks, but from this description I'd probably read it if I read this on the back cover at a bookstore. So, as far as querying goes, you can futz around with this some more and make sure your first pages are SOLID (if you haven't already, you can post your first 250-words in the 250 word forum for feedback). Otherwise, though, it might just take patience. Which sucks, because I totally know the struggle of just wanting to DO something, when all you can really do is wait.

 

Good luck.


Please note I'm also posting on behalf of people who can't sign up, so if I provide a link in the main body of the post, make sure to reciprocate on that thread.


#3 Bibliophyl

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Posted 12 August 2019 - 02:00 PM

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case, plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper to escort wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

Permanently. [I like your first paragraph!]

 

But Luz’s plight sheds light on a bigger scheme: [how?] someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. [I don't quite understand the three-tiered thing, and I'm wondering if it's necessary to include] Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

 

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will threaten the entire concept of the Afterlife as it’s known.  [I think this might be stronger if the stakes were more personal to Luz. What does she personally stand to gain or lose? How does the afterlife being threatened affect her?]

 

I am currently seeking representation for Our Lady of Death, a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on the Divine Comedy, Our Lady of Death combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. [I think this is definitely a selling point!] The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

I hope this was helpful! I think this is solid and could be great with some tweaks. I feel like I've seen a lot of agents looking for material like this (Latino folklore, etc.). How many rejections have you gotten? Good luck!



#4 mindy24601

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 02:56 PM

Update in first post! Thank you for the feedback!



#5 Anna.k

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Posted 13 August 2019 - 03:50 PM

 

Unfortunately I have not been successful in the query world, and was wondering if anyone out there would be able to take a look and give some feedback. I feel like it might be a little wordy in some parts. 

Will reciprocate! :D 

 

Update 2.0

 

Attn: Fantastic Agent X

 

Dear Mr/Ms X: 

 

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case; plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper, she now escorts wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. (This sounds fun, but agree with above comments, too wordy for a hook) But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, (Lol I love this) and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell. (Nice. This is clear and succinct.)

Permanently. 

But Luz’s half-hearted efforts to straighten up (How?) accidentally uncover a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife.(This is cool, but I'm not sure you need the three tier part) Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool  who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. (Not sure these character descriptions are necessary to the plot) 

 

But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will force Luz to choose between her new friends reputation, her own reputation, and the existence of the Afterlife as it’s currently known.  (Hmm, this is super vague. Especially the bit about hidden secrets, which is kinda tropey in itself. Need to specify Luz's quandary and specify how it will affect her)

I am currently seeking representation for OUR LADY OF DEATH, a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on Dante’s Divine Comedy, OUR LADY OF DEATH combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the skeletal personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass. (This sounds epic! Altho comparing yourself to Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir who are practically immortal queens in YA Fantasy at this point might not be the best idea... go for someone middle ground)

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

Sincerely,

 
Mindy Maxwell

 

 

Thanks for helping out with my query!! The query trenches are so rough lol



#6 jrjan1

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Posted 15 August 2019 - 12:07 PM

Here's my two cents. I have one on here as well and would appreciate your thoughts on mine.

 

Years before the legends ever address her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil (if this is a title, I think it would be capitalized and separated with a comma) Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case; . Plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper, she now escorts wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife (no capital-I don't like starting a sentence with But. Perhaps make it a compound sentence and separate with a comma). But taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, when Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

Permanently. 

 

( Like this: 

Plucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper, she now escorts wayward souls to their penance-filled afterlife, but taking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl. When Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to... (This is the third time you've used hell very close together.) Hell.

Permanently. 

)

 

But Luz’s half-hearted efforts to straighten up accidentally uncover a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

 

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Aafterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Aangel. But the underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which,  that haveing fallen into the wrong hands. Luz is forced , will force Luz to choose between her new friend's reputation, her own reputation, and the existence of the aAfterlife as it’s currently known.  (Is there another thing she can choose between? Using reputation so close together seems klunky)

 

I am currently seeking representation for OUR LADY OF DEATH, a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on Dante’s Divine Comedy, OUR LADY OF DEATH combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the skeletal personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

Thank you for your time.

 

This sounds like a great story. Kudos. I don't think the word afterlife, hellboy, or angel would be capitalized.



#7 janeald

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Posted 17 August 2019 - 04:51 PM

 

Unfortunately I have not been successful in the query world, and was wondering if anyone out there would be able to take a look and give some feedback. I feel like it might be a little wordy in some parts. 

Will reciprocate! :D 

 

Update 2.0

 

Attn: Fantastic Agent X (If they have email subject line guidelines, make sure to follow those.)

 

Dear Mr/Ms X (I suggest only putting agent name): 

 

Years before the legends ever addressed her as Señora Muerte, sarcastic daredevil Luz is Purgatorio’s charity case.; pPlucked from her job as Hell’s sewer-scraper, Luzshe now escorts wayward souls to their penance-filled Afterlife. But tTaking the girl out of Hell is easier than taking Hell out of the girl, and, wWhen Luz’s pranks accidentally cost one of her coworkers his chance at Heaven, she’s given an ultimatum: shape up, or get shipped back to Hell.

Permanently.

 

But Luz’s half-hearted efforts to straighten up accidentally uncover a bigger scheme: someone is cheating Heaven out of its souls, threatening the strict hierarchy of the three-tiered Afterlife. Luz’s penchant for mischief makes her a prime suspect, yet she’s unwilling to accept an eternity of scrubbing Satan’s sewers without a fair fight. Especially when she knows just who is to blame.   

 

Luz soon realises that proving her innocence will require her to recruit the skills of souls from all three realms of the Afterlife, including a starry-eyed Hellboy and a rainbow-loving fool who doesn’t quite match anyone’s idea of an Angel. But tThe underdogs’ efforts will force the revelation of secrets that should have remained hidden, secrets which, having fallen into the wrong hands, will force Luz to choose between her new friends reputation, her own reputation, and the existence of the Afterlife as it’s currently known.  

 

I am currently seeking representation for OUR LADY OF DEATH, is a young adult fantasy novel complete at 83,000 words. A Hispanic-inspired take on Dante’s Divine Comedy, OUR LADY OF DEATH combines the TV show Supernatural with Latino folklore to bring forth an original backstory of La Calavera Catrina, the skeletal personification of death, as she evolves from a vengeful teenage spirit into the legendary Señora Muerte. The story will appeal to readers who prefer dark, grittier stories, such as those of Leigh Bardugo and Sabaa Tahir, similar to Gods of Jade and Shadow and The City of Brass.

((I understand that you…, and would be appreciative if you would consider OUR LADY OF DEATH for representation, tailored to specific agent.))

 

Thank you for your time.

 

Sincerely,

 
Mindy Maxwell

 

Really really like this plot! Let me know if you're looking for a critique partner! I hope my suggestions are helpful! 

 

I'd love your feedback on my query: http://agentquerycon...girls/?p=361490 !






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