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STEEL TOWN-Suspense


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#1 gaius

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Posted 05 November 2010 - 07:21 PM

Dear Agent,

#2 S.K. Keogh

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Posted 06 November 2010 - 09:01 PM

You tell us they married outside of their faiths but you don't tell us what that is, and obviously that is important to the story. Also you tell us they are looking for escape but escape from what? Also, why do you mention the one couple is African-American when you don't mention the ethnicity of the main characters? I would just remove "African-American" altogether.

The whole last sentence of the story paragraph needs to be re-written. It's very awkward and confusing. I think you need to elude to the "murderous" individual earlier than the last sentence.

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#3 gaius

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Posted 07 November 2010 - 03:14 AM

S.K.

Thanks for the heads up. That was my first pass at this. Having just completed the novel, I' m probably too close to the story to see the big picture. I'll take your advice and re-write.

Thanks again,
Gaius

#4 kevinmont

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Posted 07 November 2010 - 10:06 PM

I'm curious why it's called 'Battle Hymn,' PA. There IS no such town, so why do you mention it as the name of the town, if the Civil War has nothing to do with your story? Or does it? Just asking.

#5 gaius

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 06:40 AM

Kevin:


Thank you for your interest.

Battle Hymn has nothing to do with the Civil War, except, possibly a war within the town.
I've changed the genre. It's now a Suspense/Thriller. You seem to be up on your PA history. I share that interest having come from a long line of coal miners and steel mill workers. One the great curiosities PA has offered over the years is a propensity for odd-sounding towns–––Bird in Hand, Intercourse and so on. The name I created seemed to flow with the rhythm of the piece. The query has been re-written and I'll post the new version in a few days. I see that you are a veteran member. That's fantastic. I would greatly appreciate any input or suggestions you may have.

Thanks Again!
Gaius

#6 gaius

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 02:11 PM

Hi there. Gaius here. I've completed a re-write. Looking through the library, I see that I'm not alone. These queries are difficult. Any suggestions or guidance would be greatly appreciated.





An Irish-Catholic girl with a secret buried in the pit of her soul falls for an Irish-Protestant boy who knows nothing of her violent past.

It’s 1963 in Battle Hymn–––an agrarian town turned industrial wasteland. Among row homes stuffed onto Wood Street, religious intolerance has pitted kindred people against one another for over a hundred years.

Inspired by a youthful, new president, John F. Kennedy, Ron and Katherine search for a way out of this madness. In the process, they commit the gravest of sins by marrying outside their faiths. Shunned by their communities and pursued by violent zealots, they seek shelter in the only part of town that will have them. But soon, the Black family that provides cover for the young couple becomes the target for the worst humanity has to offer. Once again set adrift in a sea of hostility, Ron and Katherine find refuge in a roadside motel operated by a bigger-than-life ex-Marine with a mind-blowing secret of his own. It is there that they mount their final attempt to escape the clutches of a rotten town and the murderous individuals pursuing them.

STEEL TOWN, a Suspense / Thriller is complete at 63k words and available for your review.

#7 S.K. Keogh

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 03:44 PM

An Irish-Catholic girl with a secret buried in the pit of her soul falls for an Irish-Protestant boy who knows nothing of her violent past.

It’s 1963 in Battle Hymn (I would keep Pennsylvania on this) –––an agrarian town turned industrial wasteland. Among row homes stuffed onto Wood Street, religious intolerance has pitted kindred people against one another for over a hundred years.

Inspired by a youthful, new president, John F. Kennedy, (unnecessary info in the query) Ron and Katherine search for a way out of this (I think you need something more specific that "this madness") madness. In the process, they commit the gravest of sins by marrying outside their faiths. Shunned by their communities and pursued by violent zealots, they seek shelter in the only part of town that will have them. But soon, the Black (this still jars me and it actually reads fine without it) family that provides cover for the young couple becomes the target for the worst (the worst what? need a more-specific phrase here) humanity has to offer. Once again set adrift in a sea of hostility, Ron and Katherine find refuge in a roadside motel operated by a bigger-than-life (cliche) ex-Marine with a mind-blowing (another cliche) secret of his own. It is there that they mount their final attempt to escape the clutches of a rotten town and the murderous individuals pursuing them.

STEEL TOWN, a Suspense / Thriller is complete at 63k words and available for your review.


____________

 

SKKeogh.com

 

http://www.facebook.com/S.K.Keogh


Click to purchase your copy or to read free samples
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#8 gaius

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 05:35 PM

S.K.

Thanks for the great suggestions! The query is more daunting than the writing. I'll polish this thing up and resubmit.

Gaius

#9 kevinmont

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Posted 08 November 2010 - 11:04 PM

Nicely done, your rewrite. Your hook is excellent. I'd just get rid of one or both mentions of the word "Irish." It's not necessary, and repeating an unusual word in the same paragraph is unusual. See what I mean?

Oh, I would also put 'Pennsylvania' in there, as SK suggests. I don't know why.

In three short paragraphs, you said, in order, the hook, the message, and the story.

Good job.

#10 gaius

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Posted 09 November 2010 - 07:10 AM

Thanks Kevin. Couldn't have done it without you and S.K. over my shoulder. My MS is in the tightening phase. At some point I'd like to post a page or so. Until then...
Gaius

Oh, I will still be looking to contribute when I can be helpful.

#11 EMDelaney

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Posted 13 November 2010 - 09:38 AM

I think your last attempt is pretty good. Portions still vague however. Needs a little more detail of exactly what peril they face per say. Who exactly, what group, is after them. For what exactly. Simply marrying out of religion? Be more precise. Just my opinion, add a dollar to that and you have a coffee.

Best of luck
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#12 gaius

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Posted 13 November 2010 - 04:24 PM

Thanks EM. I really appreciate your input. I figured that 1963 would say it all. Irish damn near killed off one another through out that decade for being Catholic or Protestant.
I guess my religious cynicism is to blame for not thinking that "violent zealots" would suffice in terms of who and why the kids are being hunted and the outcome of their capture.
Back to the drawing board.

Thanks again,
Gaius

#13 gaius

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 01:31 PM

Does anybody have any suggestions before I send this?

A priest warns a Catholic teenager not to divulge the crime committed against her. Though she falls for a Protestant boy who knows nothing of her violent past, love takes a backseat in xxxxx, a Suspense/Thriller.

It’s 1963 in Battle Hymn, Pennsylvania–––an agrarian town turned industrial wasteland. Just beyond the steel mill, among row homes stuffed into alleys referred to as streets, religious intolerance has lived with families, pitting Catholic against Protestant for more than a hundred years.

Fresh out of high school, Ron and Katherine search for a way to break free. In the process, they marry, one for convenience, the other for love. Shunned by their communities and stalked by violent zealots, they seek shelter in the only part of town that will have them. But soon, the innocent family that provides cover for the young couple is targeted for deadly revenge.

Once again adrift in a sea of hostility, Ron and Katherine take refuge in a roadside motel. It is there that they mount a final attempt to escape the clutches of a rotten town and the murderous individuals pursuing them.

#14 Fitz

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 09:10 PM

I think there needs to be a clearer explanation of what crime has been committed in the first sentence. Perhaps there is a way it can be hinted at to provide a stronger hook and still remain short and to the point?

#15 Scripto

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 10:14 PM

I liked everything, but the first and second lines. I agree with the other poster about telling us what the crime is. However, I also think you could just start with the third line--It's 1963...

Good luck,

Al

#16 S.K. Keogh

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Posted 14 November 2010 - 11:59 PM

Ditch that first sentence unless the crime is stated or shown to be connected to the rest of the query/story. Then incorporate that second sentence into that current third paragraph where we meet the characters. Just my suggestions, of course.

____________

 

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#17 Brendacarre

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Posted 15 November 2010 - 03:49 AM

I liked everything, but the first and second lines. I agree with the other poster about telling us what the crime is. However, I also think you could just start with the third line--It's 1963...

Good luck,

Al


Absolutely, yes to this.

#18 Pete Morin

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Posted 15 November 2010 - 08:31 AM

I can't tell either what the conflict is or even who the main characters are until the 3rd paragraph, and that's only because Ron and Katherine are the only names mentioned.

This reads like you're transporting Belfast, Ireland to rural PA. Are you going for that?



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#19 gaius

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Posted 15 November 2010 - 08:34 AM

Thank you for shinning some light on this thing. I have to say, selling the book is not as fun as writing the book. Yikes!

#20 Jean Oram

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Posted 16 November 2010 - 11:52 AM

One topic per query, please. Always.

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