Monday, November 29, 2010
To Have a Revolution
1. Or not to have one -- that is the question for Ingrid Paddington, college freshman. She has terrifying quantities of homework due soon, but the world is in an awful state and her new boyfriend makes revolution sound like the best time ever.
2. One man's valiant attempt to conjugate a verb: I have a revolution, you have a revolution, he/she/it has a revolution...
3. In order to get medicine that will slow his sister's zombification, Ion agrees to help Nadia and her team of Romanian revolutionaries by killing the government's dragon. But what Ion doesn't know (because Nadia "forgot" to mention it) is that killing the dragon may zombify him.
4. First, you need a motivated populace (or friends like Joey and Vik). Next, a way to throw off the secret police (easy - your tattle-tale brother has the hots for easily bribed Missy Smith). Last, a decoder ring - but the despised leader has banned Cracker Jack, so we're stuck.
5. It’s not the king's fault an earthquake left most of his people homeless and hungry. Or that his son gambled away the emergency fund. Or that his queen insists that fabulous-looking royalty keeps morale up. Or that his daughter’s lavish coming-of-age party was planned months ago, and canceling would break her heart. So why are the peasants sharpening the guillotine blade?
6. Emo twins Jared and Jason are convinced that being 15 in Mountain View is the worst possible fate. To destroy the hopelessness of the Silicon Valley, they foment a revolution at elite Berkeley Academy. Only one problem--the teachers are more into the revolution thing than the kids.
Dear EE & Minions,
In an alternate communist Romania filled with dangerous magic, a magically gifted youth must use the abilities he fears to overthrow the government--and the power secretly controlling it.
Over the past few months, Ion Popescu has watched his sister begin to transform into a strigoi, the zombie-like creatures that people become when they use magic objects. [Watch me pull a rabbit out of my ha-- Braaaiiinns!] Ion can’t stop the transformation, but he can delay the inevitable. Determined to prolong her human life as long as possible, he seeks out black market contacts who will give him medicine to slow the transformation in exchange for magic talismans. But although he trades talismans, he wouldn’t dream of using them. [Why would anyone use them? Is there any advantage to becoming a strigoi?] [Is that pronounced strig oy or strig wah? The good thing about just calling them zombies is that everyone knows how to pronounce zombie.] So why do his market contacts, his best friend, and a mysterious girl all suddenly seem to think he’s using the talismans himself? [Possibly because he's now buying underwear in extra large.]
The mysterious girl is Nadia Luca, a member of a conspiracy of revolutionaries plotting to overthrow the government. She believes that Ion has skill, an innate magic ability that enables him to use some talismans safely. She’s been looking for someone like Ion: someone with enough skill to use the talisman weapon the revolutionaries have acquired. The weapon is strong enough to kill the dragon that the government is secretly using to transform and control the strigoi army--thus overthrowing the government, freeing the strigoi, and stopping the transformations for good. But what Nadia doesn’t tell Ion is that the revolutionaries have their own plans for the strigoi army. She also doesn’t tell him that even with his skill, using the talisman weapon could very well mean Ion will end up as part of the strigoi army himself. [That's it? What about Dracula? You've set the novel in Romania and Dracula's not in it? That's like setting your novel in Gotham City and not including Batman. You have a zombie army instead of a vampire army? Is that what the revolutionaries want the zombie army for? To take on Dracula's vampire army? If so, may I suggest a title change? Zombies VS. Vampires: War of the Undead.]
To Have a Revolution is a fantasy novel set in an alternate version of 1989 Romania and complete at 75,000 words.
I am a freelance writer and have published nonfiction articles in various print and online magazines. I lived in Romania for a year in 2004 and am proficient in Romanian. This is my first novel.
Thanks for your time and consideration.
You start by saying people transform into zombie-like creatures when they use magic objects. This suggests that it's common knowledge that using magic zombiates you. But at the end you make the point that Nadia didn't tell Ion that he might zombiate if he used their magic talisman. Shouldn't he know this without being told?
Nadia is the one who believes Ion has an innate ability to use magic without zombing. If Ion believed that, he wouldn't be so afraid of using magic. Yet at the end, it seems Ion is willing to use magic, while Nadia has decided Ion might zomb. They've both changed their positions?
I can see Nadia changing her position if she discovers she was wrong about Ion having used talismans, but Ion? If Ion's sister is zombomorphing, I would think it would be doubly hard to convince him that he has an innate ability to not zombomorph, as "innate" means inherited, congenital.
The question of why everyone suddenly thinks Ion is using talismans is worth answering in the query, as it seems to explain why Ion is in demand.