Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Guess the Plot
1. In the sweltering heat of a New Orleans summer, SOMETHING is killing ladies of the evening as they strut their stuff in the French Quarter. Can ace reporter Blanche Dubious and her ex-lover, homicide detective Raoul Van Helsing, chase down this otherworldly serial killer before the hurricane hits? Also, zombie meerkats.
2. Dimelda Rothpeter is a witch tired of stumbling around in the dark. In a life threatening ritual, she enchants a forest herb with the ability to delay the onset of evening. When she hangs the nightbane in her window, she attracts the attention of the Lord of Darkness, who will stop at nothing to return the planet to its regular diurnal cycle.
3. Everyone told Leah that the first few weeks with the baby would be difficult, but nothing could have prepared her for the true terror that awaited her. A cooing, sweet-cheeked infant by day; a horrifying, screaming were-baby by night. She had fallen prey to the creature born every three hundred years on the full moon: the . . . NightBane!
4. Nero Nightbane has a secret, he's really the estranged daughter of Lucifer incarnated in the body of a defrocked priest and he's having more fun than any demon as he preaches his warped version of the gospels to the hoi polloi. Will the "send your nickels and dime" message gain him fame? Or will Defender of the Faith Benedict exorcise him back to hell?
5. Banishing night seemed like a good idea at the time to magician Carl Minos. What he didn't take into account was that vampires, although minorities, were real, and they took exception. Can Carl reverse the Nightbane's effects before the vampires' sunscreen wears off?
6. Rescued by an abolitionist, Kransa will stop at nothing to gain revenge against the slavers who've kept her people down for so long. She becomes . . . Nightbane! Scourge of oppressors everywhere! The slavers immediately respond with a wave of cruel repression and death.
Dear [Agent/Submissions Editor name here],
Slaves crave revenge. Kransa is no exception.
Even though Kransa wants to kill every Gold Dragonkin keeping her enslaved, she realizes it is even more important to free her black-scaled kin. Fighting to end the brutal oppression of her people, [People? With black scales? What are they, exactly?] Kransa is captured and sentenced to destruction by the hated dawn. [Not sure what that means. Will the dawn kill her? Is she a vampire lizard person?] As the suns golden rays lighten the sky, Kalthalak, an abolitionist, rescues her and teaches her how to kill those gold-scales. At least she'll get some revenge.
Yet a creature of darkness can never rest in a world of light. [Actually, vampires always rest when it's light.] Escaping from her gilded cage in a hail of gunfire, Kransa rejoins the struggle for freedom. [Why was she in a cage when she was rescued at the end of the previous paragraph? Who's shooting at her?] Cold-blooded murder follows Kransa in the name of emancipation. The slavers respond with a cruel wave of repression and death. Kransa doesnt care; revenge is more important.
With genocide on the horizon for both Golds and Blacks, Kransa needs to realize the greatest obstacle between her people and freedom is not the Golds machinations or the Blacks hate-filled past, but the fact that she and those around her have become the very things they despise.
At 108,000 words, Nightbane is a science fantasy thriller. I have previously published a short story, Dragons Breath in the summer 2006 issue of the E-zine Antithesis Common, which received an editors choice award.
Thank you for your consideration.
[Note: Nightbane is the persona Kransa adopts after she steps up her activities against the Golds.]
There are at least four missing apostrophes, six if Dragons Breath and editors choice take them.
Where are we and what are we? Are the golds dragons and the blacks vampires? Where does the "science" come in?
This needs a clear chronological organization. First Kransa is enslaved, then she's captured. That doesn't follow. Later she's rescued and then escapes. That also doesn't follow. There needs to be a logical transition from sentence to sentence.
If the slavers are still enslaving--and killing--I'm not sure why killing them in a struggle for freedom makes you as bad as they are. What's the better option? How would this have played out if Kransa weren't obsessed with revenge? Revenge may not be the best motive, but if no one with a more altruistic motive is doing anything . . .