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Query for QUEEN OF SWORDS

tattoo, v. frances
So I'm sure you've noticed by now that I enjoy writing queries. Mostly. I generally start them around the time I get 1/3 into the book and revise constantly until the end. This is the current copy for QoS. It'll probably change before (if) I send it out, but I'm moderately happy with it now. It's been the single most difficult query so far (out of 8-ish) and I'm not completely sure why. I think it may be because this is a romance, which is difficult for me anyways. I mean, I actually love writing romance and I love these characters and this world and the whole book (lots of love going around), but it's more challenging than anything I've done up to this point (BREEDERS aside because I haven't finished it yet).

The upside of QoS (or, rather, one of many), is that I already have the next two books roughly plotted out. Which is kind of fantastic because, although they are linked, they each stand on their own. *GLEE*

Anywho, here's the query for your viewing pleasure. I have a few reviews I need to get up, but I haven't been reading over-much the last few months.

***

Dear Ms./Mr. Agent,

As a Diviner, Ophelia knows the cards don’t lie. So when they tell her to marry the Prince of the planet Hansarda, she reluctantly packs up her life and goes. What they neglect to mention is that she’s going to be kidnapped by the Prince’s half-brother, Boone; the same man she fell into bed with during the course of a fabulous night out.

Under normal circumstances, Ophelia would have no problem killing her captor and escaping. But the cards, her forum of communication with her goddess, keep giving her readings that promise a happily-ever-after, but, at the same time, warn of a horrible price to be paid. And then there’s Boone himself. He stirs things inside Ophelia, things that go beyond their intense physical attraction.

Embroiled in the beginnings of a civil war, Boone doesn’t have time for a hellcat with a penchant for making him bleed. But he can’t stand by and let the Prince marry her and gain her family connections to the biggest gun-running business in the universe. What he didn’t expect was to admire her so much, or to have this bizarre need for her to trust him.

Boone also didn’t expect Ophelia to get pregnant from their single night together. Now he can’t let her walk away for fear the Prince will hunt her down and kill her because the child she carries is a potential rival for Hansarda’s throne.

The thing is, Ophelia has no intention of walking away. She never was much good at running and hiding, and she’s not about to start now. And, thanks to the cards, she knows how the story ends; Ophelia’s will be the hand that brings down the Prince. But the cards don’t always tell the full story, and the price for victory just might be more than she’s willing to pay.

My sci-fi romance, QUEEN OF SWORDS, is complete at XX,000 words. Sample chapters and synopsis are available upon request.

Thank you for taking the time to consider my novel.

***

So, any thoughts? Am I alone in my love for the query? *tee hee*

Comments

( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
selestial_owg
Mar. 24th, 2010 04:14 pm (UTC)
Okay, I love this story, BUT I think the query gives too much of it. For me personally, I want a little LESS here. Maybe it's the pregnancy part? I get that it gives more conflict, but at the same time, from there (especially with the part about bringing down the prince) I feel like I know the whole story.

I'm not sure. This might just be me.
redqueen1
Mar. 24th, 2010 04:28 pm (UTC)
No. I think you might be right.

See what I mean, though? This thing is driving me nuts. And I can't leave it alone, which is just plain insane. *headdesk*



selestial_owg
Mar. 24th, 2010 05:24 pm (UTC)
Okay, I'm going to try to break this down.


As a Diviner, Ophelia knows the cards don’t lie. So when they tell her to marry the Prince of the planet Hansarda, she reluctantly <
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Okay, I'm going to try to break this down.


As a Diviner, Ophelia knows the cards don’t lie. So when they tell her to marry the Prince of the planet Hansarda, she reluctantly <<not sure this is the best word, or if you even need a qualifier>> packs up her life and goes. What they neglect to mention is that she’s going to be kidnapped by the Prince’s half-brother, Boone; the same man she fell into bed with during the course of a fabulous <<another qualifier that doesn't seem to fit right to me -- unless you changed that chapter >> night out.

Under normal circumstances, Ophelia would have no problem killing her captor and escaping. But the cards, her forum of communication with her goddess <<I would cut this, I think it's implied by the first sentence of the query >>, keep giving her readings that promise << Maybe just simplify the beginning of this sentence: But the card readings keep promising >> a happily-ever-after, but << second but in this sentence >>, at the same time, warn of a horrible price to be paid. And then there’s Boone himself. He stirs things inside Ophelia, things that go beyond their intense physical attraction << This is a little vague, but since it's a romance, odds are an agent would just read it in a romancey way >>.

Embroiled in the beginnings of a civil war <<nice>>, Boone doesn’t have time for a hellcat with a penchant for making him bleed <<nicer -- I love Boone>>. But he can’t stand by and let the Prince marry her and <<maybe "to" instead? You have a lot of ands and buts>> gain her family connections to the biggest gun-running business in the universe <<this part gets a little wordy>>. What he didn’t expect was to admire her so much, or to have <<feel?>> this bizarre need for her to trust him.


<<This is where I think you should cut story specifics, or maybe RIGHT after the baby. This is tough, because I think in some ways, you end this query really strong, but it's just the amount that you give away in the next two paragraphs kills me. >>

Boone also didn’t expect Ophelia to get pregnant from their single night together. Now he can’t let her walk away for fear the Prince will hunt her down and kill her because the child she carries is a potential rival for Hansarda’s throne.

The thing is, Ophelia has no intention of walking away. She never was much good at running and hiding, and she’s not about to start now. And, thanks to the cards, she knows how the story ends; Ophelia’s will be the hand that brings down the Prince. But the cards don’t always tell the full story, and the price for victory just might be more than she’s willing to pay.<<I LOVE this ending. I like that it brings the query back full-circle to the cards and the price to be paid. I'm just not sure of the best way for you to piece together from my last comment to here without giving so many plot details in between. >>
sandy_williams
Mar. 24th, 2010 06:21 pm (UTC)
I agree with her. I don't think you should put the pregnancy thing in there. The first half of the query is pretty good, I think you just go on a little too long with the 2nd half.

Just a thought: how big an issue is the gun-running business. I remember it being an issue in the beginning, but maybe not so much the end? I think that's a good plot point that might need to be highlighted more, to show the stakes and how Ophelia can influence the outcome of the war?
selestial_owg
Mar. 24th, 2010 05:24 pm (UTC)
Er I hope that came through okay, didn't realize the way I formatted it would cause issues.
redqueen1
Mar. 24th, 2010 05:32 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I think I have an idea of how to condense it down. Glad to know I'm (at least partially) on the right track. There's something about this book that keeps me second-guessing myself like crazy.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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tattoo, v. frances
redqueen1
Katee Robert

About Me

I'm an aspiring writer. My books range from zombies to djinn to retold fairy tales, and I love a good make-out scene. When I'm not lost in imaginary worlds, I'm hanging out with my two wee ones and moving around the world with my military husband.

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