Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Face-Lift 1390

Guess the Plot

A Pawn of Sedition

1. Armenian chess master, Ivana Sedition, reveals the secret to her five year run of spectacular wins: the pawns were dictating play to her all along. 

2. Fifteen year old Casey Robbins is sick of being used in his parents' endless war with each other. So tonight he's got Mom's sewing scissors, and when Dad goes to sleep on the couch, Casey's going to end this mess once and for all.

3. Kidnapped by terrorists, Mea must follow their rules to survive. Or she could risk her life trying to stop their plan to kill millions of people. Millions of people who, let's face it, are going to die eventually anyway.

4. Hearse was accepted as Pawn for the Sedition Order, but he has higher aspirations, namely Knighthood. However, to become a Knight, he must make his way across the land, avoiding the Obedience Cult who will stop at nothing to capture him.

5. Queen Mirahda has been trapped in her loveless marriage to King Roneda for thirty long years. Her last hope for revenge against her cruel husband is her 16 year old son, Guthry. Armed with Guthry, her son-in-law Prince Tephy and loyal wizard Demitus, she's ready to launch her play to remove the King. Unfortunately, Guthry is autistic and only interested in wagons and numbers. Can her coup succeed?

6. After being kidnapped by aliens, Lyle creates an Anarchist's Cookbook for his fellow slaves in an attempt to sow enough internal dissension that he can make a break for freedom. Unfortunately, he succeeds too well, becoming the galaxy's go-to agitator, and the only thing stopping a militarized hegemony from conquering Earth.

Original Version

Dear Evil Editor,

Eighteen-year-old Mea Gwen knows that to prosper in a society consumed by money, power, and lies, one has to understand the basic tenets of 22nd century America:

People in poverty didn’t work hard enough.

Races can’t get along, so don’t even try.

Facts don’t matter; truth is subjective. [Wait, those are the basic tenets of 21st-century America.]

Luckily Mea has all the tools to thrive — fame, wealth, and her family’s multi-billion dollar tech company. Too bad she couldn’t care less. Wary of the dark world of business, Mea would rather join the first Intergalactic Pioneer Program and spend her days discovering new planets.

But before she can experience life among the stars, a terrorist group calling themselves the Reformers bombs mega bank, United Finances. Their first attack kills hundreds, but it’s only the beginning. Claiming [Vowing] to bring back economic justice, [I'd go with "establish." You can't bring back something that never existed.] the Reformers begin kidnapping the richest of the rich, striking fear through [into?] every designer-wearing floosy [plutocrat? capitalist?] in the country. When the group finds its way [Reformers find their way] to Mea and her company, her trip to through space becomes a distant dream.

Now stuck in the Reformers’ murderous scheme, Mea finds herself twisted [entwined? caught?] in a political conspiracy that threatens the lives of millions. Either she follows their rules to survive, or she risks her life stopping a plan that could break an already divided country. [If Mea is one of their kidnap victims, I don't see that she's also involved in their conspiracy. What do they want her to do?]

A PAWN OF SEDITION, is a 90,000-word Young Adult science fiction novel that delves into the issue of social and political division. The story unfolds using a mix of hacked documents and standard narrative.

Thank you for your consideration,


It seems more likely that the Reformers would throw all the billionaires into prison than involve them in their conspiracy and trust them to follow their rules.

I want to hear more about how the lives of millions are threatened by the Reformers. It sounds like their goals go well beyond economic justice, so maybe you can let us in on what Mea learns about their true agenda.

The only hint that this is science fiction is that Mea hopes to go into space and look for new planets. It might as well be set in 2018 and she wants to be an astronaut. Can you work something into the query about the science or how the 22nd century is different from the 21st?

You're spending the entire plot summary setting up Mea's situation. We want to know what she plans to do, what goes wrong, what her plan b is. If you condense your first six paragraphs into something like this:

Eighteen-year-old Mea Gwen has all the tools to thrive in a 22nd-century society consumed by money, power, and lies, but Mea would rather ditch her family’s multi-billion dollar tech company, join the first Intragalactic Pioneer Program, and spend her days discovering new planets. Unfortunately, before she can experience life among the stars, she's kidnapped by the Reformers, a terrorist group who've vowed to establish economic justice throughout the country (world?).

... you'll have plenty of room to tell us what happens after she's kidnapped.

Note that I changed "Intergalactic" (between galaxies) to "Intragalactic" (within our galaxy). Inter seems a bit optimistic for the 22nd century. We haven't even explored Uranus yet.


Unknown said...

The very first thing I thought of was, "Patty Hearst".

One of the harsh realities of the people who want to 'overthrow the establishment' is that they usually just want to take over for themselves. Does Mea figure this out for herself? Maybe that would be an interesting reality check for her.

Dottie D said...

OMG that guess the plot #2 was fabulous! Love it! Someone please write that story.