Guess the Plot
1. Scarlet Rivers investigates an alleged haunting in which the stones of Bloodstone Creek run red with blood—but only during the Blood Moon.
2. A'Brn'Y and the rest of her Clan live under the waterfall of Bloodstone Creek, where they act as liaisons for the numerous teenagers whose coming-of-age is marked by discovery of their Faery heritage.
3. Bloodstone Creek was the brainchild of George Rusnak. George is dead now, but his daughter Lillian works at the haunted Halloween attraction. This is the story of Bloodstone Creek’s cast and staff during its first season. Boo!
4. For years the people of Bloodstone Creek, Montana, have assumed that bachelor ranchers Jeremy and Franklin were gay. Only Lakota Billy knows the truth: They're not gay, they're really aliens. But will anyone believe a 10-year-old autistic boy?
5. What happens after all the humans leave Earth? The pigs lord it over the less intelligent species. Then Paula Prickles leads the porcupines of Bloodstone Creek in rebellion. Their allies are the bobcats, the owls and the skunks; their enemies are the pigs, the snakes and the lizards.
6. Whoever said you can’t get blood from a stone was a fool. Ever since Josiah turned up that rock while plowing the back forty and threw it in the creek, the water’s been running red. The cows won’t drink it and the milk supply’s running short. If Meg has to summon the witch to get this fixed, she knows that this time it’s gonna cost more than her first-born child.
Dear Evil Editor,
Opening for its first October in a secluded creekside warehouse, Bloodstone Creek, a Halloween attraction with its own haunted past, [If it has its own past, how is it opening for its first October? Was it somewhere else in previous years?] draws from the surrounding towns eager crowds of victims and monsters alike. Everyone craves a taste of blood-racing, finger-knotting, plexiglass-smacking mortal terror—or else like Lillian Rusnak, a mostly average high school junior with a theatrical flair, they just love to terrify.
But Lilly believes that no other volunteer lurker within the Creek's walls is so drawn to lurk there as she is, and that no one carries the legacy she does. [For she is, in actuality, Lilith, mother of all vampires.]
Because among all the joke epitaphs etched in the foam grave markers by the entrance is a real one for Lilly's father, who named Bloodstone Creek and wrote its back story. *George Rusnak*, the marker reads, *The Mind Behind the Madness*, and the date of his death three years ago.
And while Lilly's not the only girl at the Creek ready to eat the stage blood off the face of Blake Carver, whose crazed green eyed-glare [eyed-glare?] and rasping voice sends [send] patrons running from whatever room he's working, she doubts even his frustrated ex-girlfriend has a connection to him quite as strong as her own. [No other volunteer is so drawn to lurk there as she is, no one carries the legacy she does, no one is as connected to Blake Carver as she is . . . These aren't things people aspire to. Teens want to be known as the one with the coolest car and clothes, not the one who is most drawn to lurk at a Halloween attraction.]
Because Lilly's the one who first met Blake back when he was a loud, sad, drunk kid stumbling through the parking lot of a third-rate "Spookyhouse" in another state. That happened late in the long cross-country road trip Lilly once took with her parents. That was the trip she missed half of seventh grade for. The trip her father enthusiastically planned and called their Haunt Tour, while her mother tried to quietly swallow her objections. [If mom didn't want to go on the Haunt Tour, and it meant Lilly missing half of 7th grade, why didn't dad go alone?] The trip that finally finished a little more than three years ago…
In 60,000 words and three alternating timelines, Lilly Rusnak narrates the story of her family during the last few years of her father’s life, the story of Bloodstone Creek’s cast and staff during its first season, and the story of herself and Blake during their final encounter with one another. [That's all pretty vague. Is there a story?] Part drama, part romance, and part dark backstage comedy, [It's not coming across as dramatic or comedic, and a romance would end with Lilly and Blake together, not having had a final encounter three years ago. It's not horror or mystery?] *Bloodstone Creek* is a literary Young Adult novel about the desire to create imaginary ghosts, so that we can bear to live among the real ones. [Is "literary" a word you want to use when trying to attract YA readers?]
My short story “Redacted” has appeared in Redacted Press’s *Redacted Anthology,* published in Recent Date.
Thank you for your consideration.
Is there a plot thread that holds everything together? For instance, did dad die under suspicious circumstances, and his killer is still at Bloodstone Creek? Is the haunted attraction really haunted? What do you mean by Lilly and Blake's "final encounter"?
This query is mostly back story and the setting. I'm reminded of The Night Circus, which is mostly about the circus and its cast and staff, but your haunted warehouse is going to have to be spectacular if it's the main character. If Lillian is the main character, what is her goal? Who or what is keeping her from achieving it? What is she planning to do about it? What happens in your book? You want teenagers to read this, so focus on the good stuff. Sex, violence, ghosts. Don't tell us it's a story about X. Tell us the story. In ten sentences.
You can condense this whole thing into one sentence: Ever since Lilly Rusnak's father died three years ago at Bloodstone Creek, the Halloween attraction he created, Lilly has been (choose one) [quietly looking for clues to what killed him/ keeping his legacy alive by recruiting her friends to work there/ turning tricks in the "Zombie Bride's Bedroom."] That leaves plenty of room to provide specific details about what happens.