Guess the Plot
The Darkness Rising
1. A blockage in the sewer pipes below a ritzy apartment building has all the sinks and toilets in the building overflowing with sewage and sludge. Can corrupt apartment manager Vinnie Coleman figure out a way to blame the residents and pocket their security deposits?
2. An unspeakable evil lurks beneath Centerville High school and...oh, Christ, can't we come up with better names for these things?
3. Exterminator Mark never expected to fall in love when he was dispatched to eliminate some pests. Nor did he expect that his lover, Karen, would turn out to be a superspy. Now Karen must survive assassination attempts while Mark fights off an infestation that threatens to rise up and destroy the planet.
4. College student Leah Martin must stop the killing spree of a serial killer known only as The Shadow. But every step Leah takes toward The Shadow is a step toward her own dark desires.
5. The evil magician Kha-Cha'Hren controls a dragon that guards a crystal that was created by the god Hroth'Bil eons ago. Now the crystal's evil power is seeping upward and the planet's inhabitants turn to Princess Aleiainala for salvation. But can Aleiainala trust the ruggedly handsome rebel leader?
6. Addison Velrune's homework is eaten by a dog, Zack Martinez's detective agency is taken over by a canine unit, and a high-pitched signal from outer space turns all Jack Russell terriers on the planet from pets to predators. All will be resolved in Book 9.
Dear Evil Editor,
The Darkness Rising is my first novel of a planned trilogy, finished at 58,000 words after several large cuts and revisions. [I appreciate that you've saved me the trouble of making the large cuts and revisions, but that's not what I'd call a selling point. Plus, how do I know you didn't cut the scene with the wolfman and the naked coed?] A twisted plot littered with betrayal and deception along with a heartwarming tale of romance makes this science fiction novel stand out from the rest. [I hope you mean your book has plot twists rather than a twisted plot, as the latter doesn't sound all that flattering. Also, the word "littered" doesn't belong in your description. It makes me think "cluttered" or "soiled." I can't recall seeing the term "littered with" followed by anything except "corpses." Maybe "sprinkled," "infused," "peppered"?] [Better yet, dump the betrayal and deception, which set this apart from very few science fiction novels, and just mention the heartwarming romance.]
Mark and his brother John are exterminators of Sector 7, a government organization that eliminates dangerous indigenous organisms on a distant inhabited planet, Salvadon. [If exterminators from another planet arrived on Earth to eliminate dangerous indigenous organisms, guess what organisms would be the first to go.] During a mission, [I wonder if the Orkin guys refer to their visits as "missions"?]
they uncover a parasite, capable of transforming infected into creatures with intelligence beyond human ability or outright killing them in minutes. An ancient race known as the Ometrons developed the parasite to eradicate most of their nemeses and creators, the Arcadians, [Wouldn't it have eradicated only half of their nemeses, while littering the other half with the super-intelligence needed to destroy the Ometrons?] turning it against humans as both races fought in an eternal war over the fate of humanity. ["Eternal" is a big word for a war.] [Are the humans involved in this war? Because when there's a war, I've noticed it's hard to keep humans from joining in.] [By the way, which race wants humans to be eradicated, just so I'll know for whom to root?]
Humanity has no idea about the great war, [We're too busy with our own mediocre wars.] and Mark pays little heed to the seemingly feeble parasite [They uncover a parasite that can kill within minutes, and label it "feeble"? Obviously it didn't infuse them with super intelligence.] as he confronts something his years of training by his widowed father never prepared him for: love. Mark was not looking for love when he met Karen on a mission, but an immediate spark entwines them together. ["Entwines" makes me think they're all tangled up. Besides, sparks don't entwine. A spark could kindle a burning passion. Or a ball of love twine could have them ready to tie the knot.] Mark has no idea that she is an agent of Black Nova, the most notorious spy agency in the galaxy. [Who's in charge of ranking the notoriety of the galaxy's spy agencies? Also, is being notorious a good thing when you're spies? I would think you'd strive to be inconspicuous.] [You didn't see Napoleon Solo and James Bond getting into bar fights over whether UNCLE or MI6 was more notorious.] Her superiors reassigned her to use her position to steal classified government information, but she finds herself in love with Mark and doesn’t know what to do. [What's the conflict? Does Mark the exterminator have classified government information? Whose government are we talking about?]
Karen discovers she’s pregnant with Mark’s child after a mission puts him in the hospital, [He forgot the first rule of exterminators: Make sure you aim the can of Raid away from your face.] and she promises herself to quit the agency to raise her family. [If a couple is going to try to get by on one salary, who should quit, the one working for the galaxy's top spy agency or the one working for Terminix?] The ghosts of Karen’s past life come back to haunt her as she survives an assassination attempt, and the three flee to a safehouse. [The three, meaning Mark, Karen and their baby? Or Mark, Karen and John? John has such a small role, I recommend exterminating him from the query.] Mark unearths Karen’s true identity after a comrade was set-up, transferring Karen to her true enemies under orders of a covert defector in Sector 7. [You've lost me. Which probably means you've lost everyone.] Mark learns of technological information Karen stole from the Sector 7, information that the people who kidnapped her [She was kidnapped? Is that what you meant by she was transferred to her true enemies?] would do anything to extract. The parasite is on the verges [verge] of expanding to an epidemic as the government prepares to do whatever necessary to contain it; Mark vows to find her [, transfer her true enemies to the hereafter,] and send her to another planet before the parasite consumes Salvadon.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
The parasite won't consume Salvadon. After a while a lot of Salvadonians will have become super-intelligent and will figure out a way to eliminate it.
The plot description is too long. It's also confusing. Focus on the romance:
When Mark is sent to Salvadon to exterminate some pests, he falls in love with Karen, who just happens to be a superspy with a price on her head. Seems the Ometrons want her dead for siding with the Arcadians in the war to decide whether humanity should be wiped out by parasites or bombs.
When pregnant Karen is kidnapped, it's up to Mark, armed only with a garden fogger, an insect sprayer, and a bug zapper, to take down the Ometron Empire and rescue his true love.
Now add no more than five sentences explaining the plan and what goes wrong.