Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Face-Lift 10

Guess the Plot

Stripped

1. When Big Willie Miller shows up for work at the furniture refinishing shop, he discovers his boss's dead, naked body on the floor. The secretary is missing and so is every chair and table in the place.

2. The Maxwells' massive home renovation coincides with the crumbling of their marriage.

3. Business traveler Mudge Simpson knew all the tricks at the airport--until the day his seven-year-old nephew left a Super Laser Toy Gun in his pocket, the same pocket in which his ex-wife planted a joint.

4. Amanda's co-workers throw her a party to cheer her up after she misses out on a promotion she deserved. They even hire a male stripper. How will Amanda react when she discovers the stripper is the guy who did get the promotion?

5. A psychiatrist uses a Rorschach test and a full-body search to expose a cadre of smugglers working in the human resources department of a Fortune-500 company.

6. Lounge Lizard Ervin Parvenik comes home from work and finds Candy Striper, his favorite stripper, bound and gagged in his bedroom with a note tucked into her G-string that reads, “Kill Candy, or die.”


Original Version

What would you do if the stripper at your party turned out to be the person who got your promotion at work? [Evil Editor would have the film he secretly made of the striptease on the Internet so fast . . . ]

Stripped is a 65,000 word chick lit novel. It was a finalist in the chick lit category of the 2005 Northeast Ohio RWA’s Romancing the Novel contest. [There are too many adjectives in romance writing. In the chick lit division of the 2005 Northeast Ohio RWA’s Romancing the Novel contest, my 100,000-word paranormal erotic mystery suspense got honorable mention in the Mildred Murphy Hearts and Roses Best Kiss that Takes Place Later Than Chapter 10 category.]

Amanda Thomson, a web designer dissatisfied with her dull life, finds out that Jake Waters, the talentless stripper at the consolation party her friends threw for her when she lost out on a management promotion, got the job she wanted – no, deserved. [You didn't get the job? Hey, let's party!]

And not only is she fighting to prove herself at work, Amanda also has to deal with her meddling Grammy, her mom dating for the first time since her dad’s death, and her sister’s nagging suspicions of a cheating spouse. [Evil Editor wishes you had used a name other than Amanda. Suddenly he can't stop thinking about Amanda Peet.]

Jake just relocated from Chicago and only stripped to his skivvies at Amanda[Peet]’s party as a favor for a friend.
["Hey, old buddy, we're throwing a party to cheer up the woman who deserved to get the job you just got, and we thought it might be appropriate for you to show up at the party and do a strip tease."
"You're right; it's the least I can do . . . but it's a little late to find a babysitter for Chelsea."
"Bring her along!"]
He’s a workaholic single dad, trying to balance work demands while caring for his eight-year-old daughter…and chafing beneath his pushy mother’s influence.

The power struggles and sexual tension increase when Amanda and Jake are forced to work together at a tech conference, and then on an important client’s project. Amanda [who looks exactly like Amanda Peet,] struggles to believe in her own self-worth. Jake [who looks exactly like Evil Editor,] struggles to learn how to balance work and home responsibilities. And both struggle to get what they want and need from a relationship with each other, [a relationship that quickly moves from the boardroom to the hot, steamy bedroom.]


~ ~ ~


[Okay, Evil Editor is back from his break.]

I have a Master’s degree in English, and my Bachelor's degree was in English, Creative Writing. I worked in web design, and I am a principal manuscript editor for a legal publishing company. I also freelance edit and teach self-editing workshops. I am a member of Romance Writers of America, as well as the Chick Lit Writers of the World chapter.

I would be delighted to send you the first three chapters and a synopsis of Stripped. Thank you very much for your time and consideration, and please let me know if you have any questions.

Sincerely,


Revised Version

How would you feel if the stripper at your party got the promotion you deserved?

Amanda Thomson, a web designer dissatisfied with her dull life, learns that she didn't get the big promotion to a management position that she wanted. Her friends try to cheer her up by throwing a consolation party, complete with a male stripper. Amanda feels a little better--until she finds out who did get the promotion: the stripper!

Jake Waters just relocated from Chicago, and only stripped to his skivvies at Amanda’s party as a favor for a friend. He’s a workaholic single dad, trying to balance work demands while caring for his eight-year-old daughter.

Power struggles and sexual tension arise when Amanda and Jake are forced to work together at a tech conference, and then on an important client’s project. Amanda, who must also deal with her mom dating for the first time since her dad’s death, and her sister’s nagging suspicions of a cheating spouse, begins to question her own self-worth. Jake strains to balance work and home responsibilities. And both struggle to get what they want and need from a relationship with each other.

Stripped is a 65,000 word chick lit novel. It was a finalist in the chick lit category of the 2005 Northeast Ohio RWA’s Romancing the Novel contest. I have a Master’s degree in English, have worked in web design, and am a principal manuscript editor for a legal publishing company. I also freelance edit and teach self-editing workshops. I am a member of Romance Writers of America.

I would be delighted to send you the first three chapters and a synopsis of Stripped. Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

Sincerely,


Notes

Is there a romance between Jake and Amanda? If so, tell us what could possibly attract her to a talentless stripper who stole her promotion. No jury (of twelve women) would convict her if she murdered the guy.

One thing I don't get. There's a job opening at Amanda's firm. Years of productive work have earned her this promotion. Jake relocates from Chicago. If he relocated because he got the job, and it's been announced that Amanda didn't get the job, then everyone at the party would know Jake got the job. Yet the query seems to imply that the people at the party don't know this. If Jake relocated for another job, one on Amanda's level, and gets the promotion after only two days in town, just because he's a man, well, that's the way it works in the real world, but this is fiction, and fiction needs to make sense.

A reader asked why the queries were all for romance novels. As it happened, Evil Editor was first mentioned publicly on a romance writers loop, and the ladies wanted to keep him all to themselves. (And, come to think of it, vice versa.) It may also be worth noting the following figures on sales of popular fiction:

Science Fiction 7.3% (53m)
General Fiction 12.1% (88m)
Mystery 24.7% (187m)
Romance 38.8% (283m)

These figures are six years old, and the gap has probably widened. More romances require more romance authors. And, of course, more romance queries. Evil Editor now has many non-romance queries in his pile, and will get to them soon.

11 comments:

Tawny Taylor said...

Those statistics aren't far off, Evil.

From RWA's 2005 Market Research (https://www.rwanational.org/eweb/docs/05MarketResearch.pdf?Site=RWA
05MarketResearch.pdf (application/pdf Object)

(figures from 2004)

Romance generated $1.2 billion sales

2285 romance novels were released

54.9% of paperback sales were romances

39.3% of all fiction sold was romance

And I see Evil has embraced that which makes romance so popular--the ability of the reader to put him/herself into the character's shoes and live vicariously :)

Rhonda Stapleton said...

LOL - I like your rewrite of my query. Thank you!

I'll work on making it clearer why only one person (a girl who didn't work with Amanda, but was a "friend of a friend") at the party knew him.

Thanks again,

Rhonda

Patrice Michelle said...

LOL! You mean the double entendre post didn't seem like he was embracing "living vicariously"? *g*

Yep, those stats are amazing, aren't they, Tawny?

40 queries? Evil's Minions are keeping him busy!

I enjoyed this query "make over" Are these queries being critted via the "First Minion Rights" method?

signed,

EM #1 (that's like calling shotgun, folks!)

Tawny Taylor said...

I can't believe she called shotgun :) LOL

And I agree, Patrice. I think EE's found himself a full-time excuse to procrastinate :)

Patrice Michelle said...

Technically, InnerTube is #1 and you're like #4 or something. Dunno what that makes me. I'm too lazy to go back and count. LOL!

Gayle Miller said...

I sense a certain disdain for male strippers!

We just had one at a home-candle-sales party (any excuse will do) and he was well built (quite a bit like EE) and adorable and very NICE.

BuffySquirrel said...

7.3% for SF? Sigh.

Sometimes I think it's an Evil Fate that means I have no interest in reading, and therefore am disqualified from writing, romance.

Now, about this love scene with my protag and the woman who says she doesn't want him...

Tawny Taylor said...

At a home candle party?! I need to go to candle parties by your house :)

Sweet said...

EE, I'm new here. But love what you're doing man. Keep up the good fight.

JENNA said...

Strippers must be all the rage - I just turned a stripper book in to my agent.

I'd love to see the scene where he walks into work and realizes all the women in the office have seen his bits! That's gotta be good!

Cindy Procter-King said...

EE, your comments on this one made me burst out laughing. Rhonda, it sounds like a fun book.

Cindy