Friday, April 30, 2010
Guess the Plot
The Emperor's Edge
1. The citizens are revolting. Seriously. To regain their respect, the emperor will have to rely on something never before seen in Sphereland.
2. What good is being an emperor if you can't have your own private tailor, your own private mistress, and your own private assassin? And, you save money if they're all the same person.
3. Tony Spagnolo owns the world's third largest razor company. He sets out with a daring plan to steal a fantastic new blade design from The Emperor Shaving Company. Can he beat the high tech security system and get . . . The Emperor's Edge?
4. For centuries the god-emperors of Dagot have ruled their kingdom with their unstoppable fighting style - until a humble street orphan stumbles onto their secret. All he has to do now is publish it before they can kill him. Of course, first he'll need . . . a query letter.
5. Idealist Jorian Vangnor sets out to compete in the Sacred Games. The victor becomes absolute ruler of the Sycrovian Empire for the next five years. Little does he know that the current Emperor has already marked the cards, shaved the dice, and gimmicked the roulette wheel.
6. Amaranthe Lokdon is supposed to be protecting the emperor with her blade, but she has her own problems: everybody in the city is trying to kill her, and her actual weapon of choice is a coffee canister. At least she's prepared if she needs a caffeine fix.
Dear Evil Editor,
Imperial law enforcer, Amaranthe Lokdon, is good at her job: she can deter thieves and pacify thugs, if not with a blade, then by toppling an eight-foot pile of coffee canisters onto their heads. But when an arson [arsonist] destroys a giant kiln, [Fire destroying a kiln is like a rainstorm destroying a swimming pool. In the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, the entire downtown was destroyed; the only thing left was a kiln.] a mysterious creature ravages innocent citizens, and a secret coalition plots to kill the emperor, she feels a tad overwhelmed. [I'd remove the kiln from the list of stuff that's overwhelming her. Right now it's like saying a secret service agent is overwhelmed because terrorists are attacking the White House, Klingons are destroying Washington and his toaster is malfunctioning.] Matters get worse when her investigations annoy the wrong person, and a bounty lands on her head. Soon gangsters, assassins, and even co-workers are trying to kill her. [Why would anyone want to be an imperial law enforcer in a world where if an imperial law enforcer annoys you, you can put a bounty on her head and everyone will try to kill her? Instead of having imperial law enforcers they should just put bounties on all criminals.]
The only person not attempting to cash in is the most infamous criminal in the city, an assassin named Sicarius. He has an inexplicable interest in keeping the emperor alive, which makes him the perfect ally, [If everyone's trying to kill me, my perfect ally is gonna be someone with an inexplicable interest in keeping me alive, not the emperor. Screw the emperor.] [In any case, if there are 30,001 people in this city, and 30,000 of them are trying to kill me, I'm not teaming up with the other one; I'm getting out of Dodge.] in a dear-ancestors-sometimes-he’s-more-evil-than-the-villains kind of way. [Not clear what "dear ancestors" is doing there. Is it like Oh my God? I'd get rid of it. Or change it to Oh my God. And get rid of the comma after ally.] His coldhearted indifference to humanity chills Amaranthe, but she finds herself awed by his deadly athleticism, intrigued by the past he won’t speak about, and tickled that he actually listens to her crazy schemes. Together they might have a chance to thwart the ringleaders and save the emperor, but when her curiosity drives her to unearth Sicarius’s secrets, the revelation could start a civil war....
The Emperor's Edge is a fantasy novel, complete at 105k words. I would be pleased to send it for your review. Thank you for your time and consideration.
As you focus the query on protecting the emperor with no further mention of the mysterious creature, I'd leave out the creature entirely. Unless Sicarius's secret is that he's responsible for the creature's killing spree, in which case the last plot sentence might read: Together they might have a chance to thwart the ringleaders and save the emperor, but when she discovers that the mysterious creature that's been killing people is actually Sicarius in a bear costume, the revelation could start a civil war.....
If Sicarius is a wolfman, we need to know that.