Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Frederica and the Heir to the Underworld (Goes with the query in Face-Lift 510)
FREDERICA (Freddy) is having a crappy week: a hot guy on a horse nearly runs her over, her dad’s lying to her, and the Wild Hunt, otherworldly cutthroats who hunt human game, have invaded her neighborhood. [Actually, once otherworldly cutthroats who hunt human game invade your neighborhood, other stuff isn't worth complaining about.]
The hot guy, POLYDEGMON (Deg), isn’t so bad. He asks Freddy out, but her dad, COLIN, walks in on them mid-make out session, [This sounds like it happens right after Deg asks her out, rather than after their date. Something like He takes her dancing, but her dad later walks in . . . would make it clear.] beats the snot out of Deg, and tells Freddy to stay away from the guy. Colin knows Deg’s no-good, but he won’t tell Freddy what’s so bad about her date. Sick of being left out of the loop, Freddy follows Deg to get answers.
Freddy finds Deg, [Finding someone isn't so hard when you're already following him: There he is! Up ahead!] but the Wild Hunt captures them. Colin comes to rescue Freddy, but then she must save him from becoming hell hound chow. Freddy trades her life to save Deg and Colin. The Hunt’s Leader, CERNUNNOS, agrees to let them go. Freddy, he carries back to his home-world. [I took "trades her life" to mean she dies. Turns out she's just going on a tour.]
Cernunnos’ Hunt and the Olympian gods are near war. Cernunnos hopes to make peace by marrying Freddy to an Olympian. When Freddy asks why her, Cernunnos reveals he is her real father. [Is her mother her real mother? If so, how did her mother happen to give birth to the child of the leader of a gang of human-hunting cutthroats?] Come dinnertime, Freddy reunites with Deg- and meets his father: Hades, Lord of the Underworld. Instead of Deg, Cernunnos betroths her to Deg’s brother. Cernunnos threatens to hurt Freddy’s parents if she does anything to screw up her marriage. [In-laws. At least mine waited till after the wedding to threaten my parents.] Later, Cernunnos’ wife, MACHA, insulted by her husband’s bastard, attempts to strangle Freddy. The Wild Hunt fights her off, but, for her own safety, Freddy is sent to Hades’ Underworld at once. [You know things are bad when that's the safest place they can find for you.]
Deg offers to take Freddy home. Remembering Cernunnos’ threats, Freddy refuses. She attempts to make the best of her new life in the Land of the Dead. Unfortunately, her fiancé, after a failed attempt to seduce Freddy, tries to rape her. ["Unfortunately" doesn't seem like a strong enough word.
Woman: Someone tried to rape me.
Cop: Well gee, that's unfortunate.]
Freddy fights him off, and Deg arrives in time to stop her from killing her fiancé. [She has the power to kill the son of Hades? She's a teenage girl.] Deg convinces Freddy to leave the Underworld.
At Freddy’s home, they discover Macha kidnapped Colin. Freddy runs to rescue her dad, and deg reluctantly follows. They infiltrate Cernunnos’ camp and rescue Colin. Macha catches them, but one of Cernunnos’ people kills her. [If you're one of Cerunnos's people, and you kill his wife, how much longer will you be one of Cerunnos's people?
Cerunnos's man: Hmm, my brutal leader's wife, Macha, just caught someone infiltrating our camp. How should I handle this? I know, I'll kill Macha.]
Cernunnos reveals he meant to protect Freddy from Macha’s assassination attempts through the marriage. He leaves Freddy with Colin, but promises if Freddy ever needs help, he will come.
After the dust settles, Deg and Freddy talk and decide to give their relationship a go.
This isn't doing the job. The first two paragraphs have some life, but after that it's mostly just a confusing list of things that happen. It reads like the notes you wrote to yourself before you started writing the novel. Connect some ideas with cause and effect, reasons, transitions. Inject some life. You're telling a story (in summary form), not outlining it.
You might want to mention that Cernunnos is a god. Calling him an otherworldly cutthroat doesn't necessarily make it clear he's powerful enough to capture the son of Hades, who I assume has powers of his own.
We need to know the power rankings. Cernunnos is able to capture Deg, Colin is able to beat the snot out of Deg and Freddy is able to fight off Deg's brother. One gets the impression the sons of Hades are 98-pound weaklings.
As the daughter of a god, does Freddy have powers? If so, has she ever noticed them?