Friday, January 28, 2011
Guess the Plot
The Time Weaver
1. Mihelia, Goddess of Time, must keep playing her enchanted harp so that the strands of time will work in harmony. When Blajer, God of Misrule, starts plucking her strings, events begin to cascade wildly out of sequence. Can she get her harp back into time before Jorus, King of the Gods, gets angry?
2. Cottage industry is thrown into chaos when popular hand-woven mats suddenly transport their hapless owners back in time. Will the middle-class, Prius-driving vegans survive the brutal Stone Age long enough to figure out a way home? Or is Etsy doomed to collapse?
3. As his 30th birthday approaches, Seth suddenly stops the flow of time. Then he finds himself in an alternate universe where wizards on two sides in a war want to harness his power. But all that pales in comparison to the ancient evil that threatens to consume the fabric of space and time and destroy both universes . . . unless Seth stops it.
4. After the straw-to-gold incident, Rumplestiltzkin changed his name to Phil and retired to Bermuda. When the sorcerer who's conquering the world kicks him off his island, Phil decides to get revenge using thread spun from hourglass sand and a spider named Arachne. Also, knitting.
5. Forget time lines- how about a time potholder? God's eye? Macramé plant hanger? Because this is exactly the problem the Time Weaver faces when his daughter, Clockie, gets into his office and runs off with his time threads. Your life's about to be tied into knots, just like his.
6. It is the year 2039, and "Time for a Challenge" is the most popular game show in the solar system. Rex does fine with the more physical challenges, but how can he hope to compete when it's... Weaving Time?
Dear Evil Editor,
As a child, Seth sat enthralled through his fathers [father's] vivid stories of sword and sorcery. When his father vanished, it prompted five-year-old Seth to put the stories behind him and live for reality. [I'm not sure what "live for reality" means, but five seems a bit young to decide to do it. In fact, it's a bit young to be making any decisions about your life.] Now he has a house, a car, a good job and a date for his thirtieth birthday. [Not bad for a five-year-old. Although that's way too early to be scheduling a date for his thirtieth birthday.] But all of that changes as a dormant gene awakens within Seth and stops the flow of time. [The worst part is, with time stopped he'll never get to his thirtieth birthday, and he was really looking forward to that date.]
In an alternate universe, the kingdom of Findoor sits on the brink of war with a dark and powerful warlord determined to exact revenge on the land that banished him. [Is time stopped in this universe or just in Seth's universe? If time is stopped, how can anything happen? As I recall, when time stops, everyone freezes in place. Except one person. I saw it on Twilight Zone.] Tensions build between the two factions, with skirmishes breaking out along the Findoor borders. [I'm not sure I'd refer to the kingdom as a faction. If John McCain was pissed about losing the last election and attacked us, you wouldn't call the United States a faction.] [Also, when there's a powerful warlord determined to exact revenge on you, tensions don't build, they're already maxed out.] Wizards on both sides discover a force that will spell a swift end to the war for the side that obtains it. That force is Seth. [Is Seth in their universe or have the wizards detected his existence in his own universe? I don't remember him moving to a new universe.]
Seth struggles to control his new-found powers [What are his powers, besides stopping time?] while being led through a world of magic and creatures unlike anything he has ever known. [Okay, now he's in the wizards' universe, or possibly Venice Beach. But how did he get there? Does stopping time equal switching universes?] Eventually Seth learns that there is more to the escalating war than just black versus white. Something darker and more ancient stirs, an evil that spans generations, and threatens to consume the fabric of space and time. Seth must overcome his own doubt and disbelief to defeat this evil, or watch both worlds get annihilated. [Suddenly the query has gone vague. Plus, it sounds like this evil darker something is the main villain of the novel, in which case maybe we should work it into the query earlier, cutting some of the backstory. Perhaps open with the awakening gene, even if it means we don't find out about Seth's birthday date.]
THE TIME WEAVER, an 80,000-word fantasy, leaves an unlikely hero in a world that is not his own, with an ability he never wanted, and fighting a war he didn't start. [It's a rare person who can claim to have started a war he's fighting in.]
Can you make it clear how Seth's power can make it easy to win the war? Can he stop time just for one side? Or is it his other powers they want?
If an awakened dormant gene stopped the flow of time, how can it be started again?