Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Guess the Plot
Zombies in Love
1. High school's tough for everyone, but while other kids have to worry about locking braces when they kiss, Francie and Chad have to worry about their lips falling off.
2. After the zombie apocalypse kills us all, Marley discovers that brains taste sweeter when he's shambling alongside Dixie Adams. But then the vampires show up and ruin everything.
3. Soon after Jack starts working in Lisa's pizza parlor, romance blossoms. Should he tell her he's a zombie now, or let her find out the hard way, when customers complain that fingers weren't among the toppings they ordered?
4. Melissa has grown tired of dating men who are interested only in her body. Eventually she meets George, a man who actually wants her for her braaaaaaaaaiiins.
5. John's beloved zombie bride Marsha has been kidnapped. Can he lead his fellow rotting corpses through the city and rescue her before she ends up as fertilizer?
6. Marla Higginson falls asleep watching TV only to awaken in a Zombiefied version of her favorite soap. Will she escape Zombism or, since her lover Brendan is now undead, will she convert for him? Tune in tomorrow when…
“I am seeking representation for my humorous paranormal romance novel, Zombies in Love, complete at 68,000 words long.
When he was alive, Jack Kershaw's laziness and untrustworthiness nearly destroyed the family business. Now that he's a zombie, Jack has two simple goals: to hold on to his new job at Lisa Alioto's pizza parlor, and to keep his murderous cousin from realizing that he's not entirely deceased. But that's before he realizes that Lisa's delicious body may be even less attractive than her generosity and integrity, [What I think you're trying to say is: But that's before he realizes that Lisa's generosity and integrity are even more attractive than her delicious body. Trust me, no woman wants her body described as "even less attractive than" . . . anything.] and he begins to wonder-- has he found the love of his life after he's already dead?
Lisa Alioto has always lived the life her parents planned out for her, supporting her family and working diligently at Alioto's Pizza. [If you're gonna plan out your kid's life, always include a section on how she should support you.] But when handsome, charming Jack comes into her life, she remembers the wild young girl she used to be. [You just said she has always lived the life her parents planned out for her. When was she a wild thing?] Could a romance with Jack be the adventure she's always wanted?
But Jack and Lisa are in serious danger. Jack's second chance at life is the inadvertent result of a lab experiment by two graduate students, and Winthrop University-- a school with plenty of sinister secrets-- will do anything to conceal that someone on its campus raised the dead. [Winthrop University is your villain? What happened to Jack's murderous cousin? Why was he even brought up if he's not the villain?] [Are you sure Winthrop is on board with you claiming they have sinister secrets? You can always make up a college name.] After Jack inadvertently infects Lisa, she is equally at risk. [Technically, don't you have to be dead before you can be a zombie?] The two of them must find strengths they never knew they had if they want to gain happiness together. [A vague and blah last sentence. What, specifically, do they have to do?]
The academic sections of this novel are partly based on my experiences earning a PhD in the History of American Civilization at Harvard University [but I used Winthrop instead of Harvard because Winthrop doesn't have a secret slush fund for having slandering alumni murdered]. As an independent historian, I have published academic essays on the American middle class [, which certainly qualifies me to write about zombies,] and on merchants in Charleston during the Revolutionary Era. I have also edited and co-written _________________. Under my fiction-writing pen name, ______________, I have published several short stories such as "_____________, and the novella_____________, available as an e-book from Drollerie Press. “
Not sure why the entire body of the letter is enclosed in quotation marks.
If someone told me they'd inadvertently made me a zombie, I probably wouldn't believe them. Until I started craving brain pizza. In any case, I don't think I'd take it well.
When you say the "academic sections" of the novel are based on Harvard, do you mean the sections in which grad students create a zombie? Or is it the part where the students come into the pizza parlor, get drunk, destroy the place, kill someone for laughs, and get off with a slap on the wrist because their parents know a Kennedy?
When you open by saying Jack nearly destroyed the family business when he was alive, I expect him to save the business as a zombie. Just like I expect more about the murderous cousin. As neither gets mentioned again, let's leave them out and open something like:
Jack Kershaw has two simple goals: to hold on to his new job at Lisa Alioto's pizza parlor, and to keep Lisa from finding out that he's a zombie.
Lisa is bored with her life, but when handsome, charming Jack comes along, she remembers the wild young girl she used to be, how she's long dreamed of having a romantic adventure . . . though admittedly with someone who was alive.
Now you have more space to give us some detail about the serious danger they're in and what they plan to do about it.