Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Face-Lift 981

Guess the Plot


1. Two dogs attempt to speak in English, but their vocabulary is so small . . . hilarity ensues.

2. Convicted of treason in the Andromeda galaxy, Lachette is given the ultimate sentence: banishment to Earth! Her response upon learning this: "NOOOOOooooooooo!"

3. Look, let's just cut to the chase and say that this is my answer to your query.

4. An author attempts reverse psychology to sell a novel about the childhood of an evil genius as an autobiography. It's a meta thing.

5. Whether it followed your sales pitch, marriage proposal or drunken pick-up line, if anyone's ever asked you, "What part of 'no' don't you understand?" then this is the book for you. Over 300 pages of clear explanations and real-life examples, plus chapters on etymology, pronunciation and spelling. Soon you'll be able to say, "Baby, I'm an expert."

6. A complete guide to successful parenting, from toddler to teen.

Original Version

Dear Evil Editor,

When Lachette, one of a species of humanoid aliens composed entirely of fire called Fianites, [And you thought you were burned out?] [Is it the fire that's called Fianites?] is banished from her home planet in the Andromeda Galaxy [If she was on her home planet, why is she referred to as an alien?] for high treason, she is sent to Earth. Her crime: revealing the planet's most highly guarded secrets to the enemy in the midst of war. [In the midst of war, a space ship would have better uses than transporting a criminal to another galaxy.] [I've never thought of planets as having highly guarded secrets, though admittedly, our scientists are always trying to figure out what causes the strange noises coming from Uranus. What are Earth's most highly guarded secrets, and from whom are we guarding them?] [Apparently we haven't even been able to keep the fact that Earth is the perfect place to send your worst criminals secret from planets in the Andromeda galaxy.] After befriending a few humans--two girls named Rex and Kaz, [Would a human name a girl Rex?] and two boys named Justin and Andre--she dodges the United States Armed Forces as she keeps in contact with her best friend and princess of the planet of Fianate, Zatini. [Wouldn't Zatini die of old age in the time it takes Lachette's message to get to Fianate?] [Also, isn't Zatini a pasta?] All together, they gather evidence, examine it, and send it back to the Elder Council of Fianate to prove Lachette's innocence [There's evidence of Lachette's innocence on Earth?] and uncover the one who framed her, all this within a deadline. [Twenty-seven light years.] [Yes, I'm aware light years are a measure of distance, not time, but would you have thought it was as funny if I'd said Twenty-seven exaseconds?] [(One exasecond = 32 billion years.)] She has one month to leave American territory or the President will give clearance to hunt her down and capture her as United States property. [Why has she been dodging the US military if they haven't yet been given clearance to capture her?] [Also, the US is already crawling with millions of illegal aliens. We hardly ever manage to capture any.]

No is the completed second book in the unfinished Uncertainties Series at 52,016 words. [There's nothing Uncertain about No. Change the title to Maybe, Maybe Not.]

Thank you for your time.


I wasn't sure if this was a real novel until I realized that "RexKazJustinAndreLachette" could be anagrammed to form "EE in drunk sex tryst in Uzbekistan."


Anonymous said...

It's clear that you've got a plot, always good, but what happens is so vaguely described and generic to the genre, I find myself focused on the only specifics: your seemingly random assortment of character names.

AlaskaRavenclaw said...

So this is set in a Fianite universe, eh?

Lose that penultimate graf. Oh do you need to lose that penultimate graf.

No is the completed second book in the unfinished Uncertainties Series at 52,016 words.

Or else change it to "NO is complete at 52,000 words." It's true that's a little on the short side for anything but middle grades, but those extra 16 words aren't going to help much.

And you probably don't want to start out by making the agent wonder why you're querying the second novel of a series.

Misty Nelson said...

I agree that the query is vague and also wonder why you're querying the second book in a series? Was the first book published? If so you need to mention it and, if not, you need to start querying that book. If the books are standalone (meaning the connection is they happen in the same universe but with different characters)then you should make this the first book and query it as such.

Other than that it does sound pretty generic. I'm not saying it IS generic, just that the query is so vague that it doesn't tell me what makes it unique in the SciFi Universe. It's a good start though and sounds really interesting! :)

none said...

Sometimes I think the minions are better at writing Guess the Plots than at writing queries. Some great ones here.

If this query successfully represents the novel, then the novel has problems (aside from being a bit short). Wouldn't a being composed entirely of fire destroy everything it came into contact with? What sustains the fire--fires need fuel. Presumably Lachette doesn't arrive here in fire form, or she wouldn't have any friends, merely carbon copies of them.

Hah. No, seriously, a being entirely composed of fire? What does it think with?

batgirl said...

Yeah, I'm still trying to visualise a humanoid made of fire. If you're made of fire, why would you have a fixed form at all, let alone a humanoid one?
Sure, the Human Torch looked human, but that's because he had that solid form, just sometimes it was on fire. I think.

If I were made of fire, I'd rather have an avian (avianoid?) form.