Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Guess the Plot
Blades of the Fallen
1. Tori Dean couldn't land a triple Salchow. She was ready to hang up her skates, until the mysterious old hag in the spangled costume gave her a set of gold-plated blades. Can Tori make it to the Olympics skating on Tonya's . . . Blades of the Fallen?
2. Competing with reality TV, on-demand movies, video games and more was putting Bob’s sport franchise out of business. Needing a new slant on an old sport, Bob is inspired to create Blades of the Fallen – combining the grace and beauty of ice skating with the action and blood of ultimate fighting.
3. Using his father's blade, Jak revenges himself on the man who killed his father. Now, aided by a talking dagger that wants only to be his friend, can he also find and kill the man who murdered his mother? It's a lot to ask of a ten-year old.
4. After the last mowing of summer, just as he is raking up the clippings, Harry's lawn takes its bloody revenge, and nothing in his corner of suburbia will ever be the same. Also, screaming hedges.
5. Collector David Dawkins has an unusual hobby: gathering the tools of deceased barbers. He covets a pristine set of 18th-century equipment once owned by Alexander Hamilton. What will he do to get . . . the Blades of the Fallen?
6. A trio of has-been prostitutes open a barbershop, hoping its clever name will draw customers. It does, but from an unexpected quarter: angst-ridden werewolves hoping a close shave will allow them to "pass." Also: bearded zombies.
I come to you seeking representation for my fantasy adventure novel, BLADES OF THE FALLEN: a tale of childhood, choices, and living for those you love.
Like many ten-year-olds, all Jak wants is to make his parents proud -- easier said than done when his father is a heartless, cynical thief and his mother is a bright-eyed priestess to a benevolent goddess. [Why is it difficult for a bright-eyed priestess to be proud of her son?] Even harder when, under completely separate circumstances, both of his parents are murdered. [Where was the goddess while her priestess was being murdered?]
In Jak's world, justice is more a means to control than a means to protect, so he takes matters into his own hands. [Not clear. Justice is a means to control the bad guys? Then why does Jak have to take things into his own hands? Shouldn't the justice authorities take control of the situation?] But when he assassinates the merchant lord responsible for his father's death, he sets in motion a series of events that will thrust him into the center of a hidden war that spans the continent. [It's not easy keeping a war hidden when it spans a continent. Unless you manage to disguise your armies as herds of wildebeest.] One empire wants to enslave him; another wants him dead. [A salesman kills a thief, and the thief's kid kills the salesman, and suddenly two empires go to war? Explain.]
To regain his freedom and survive, [To whom has he lost his freedom? Has he been captured?] Jak will have to escape a network of spies, a spell of enslavement, and the ghosts of his past (or, more accurately, the walking dead of his past.) [(Or, even more accurately, zombies.)] He has a short list of allies: a chipper tomb-robber with a fistful of secrets, a talking dagger who wants nothing more than a friend, [Does the dagger have a mouth, or do its words just emanate from it?]
[Jak: I need to kill that guy.
Dagger: Okay, plunge me into his eye. Then we'll play Truth or Dare again, okay? Please?]
and a goddess that has saved his life but refuses to tell him why. [Is this the same goddess?] If he's lucky, he might even bring his mother's murderer to justice, [Why doesn't the goddess bring his mother's murderer to justice? Someone kills her priestess, and she leaves it to a ten-year-old kid to get justice? Does this so-called goddess have any powers?] and keep a dangerous artifact out of the hands of those who seek power through death and deceit.
Considering his luck thus far, he can only hope that 'praying a lot' is an acceptable substitute. [For what?]
BLADES OF THE FALLEN is an epic, standalone tale and is complete at 209,500 words. [At 250 words per page, we're talking 838 pages. And that doesn't include the title page, copyright page, your 40-page index, etc. War and Peace is longer, but unless you write as well as Tolstoy, consider making this two or three books.] Its sequel, CURSE OF THE FALLEN, is already in the works. [No need to say "already" unless we know the date you finished the original, so that we can be shocked at how quickly you put the sequel in the works.] [Is the talking dagger in the sequel?] I have enclosed the first five pages of my book as an example of my writing, and a SASE if you wish to request a copy or partial copy of the manuscript. Thank you for your time and consideration, and I eagerly await your response.
[To Evil Editor: The title stems from two sources. He assassinates the merchant lord with his dead father's kukri, and the 'talking dagger' mentioned is believed to be cursed ever since the original owner used it to commit suicide.]
Usually a main character who's a kid suggests a book for kids. But not at this length. On the other hand, 800,000 words of a kid talking to a knife may not appeal to adults.
If Jak was captured, did his captors actually let him keep his dagger?
I see a spinoff series here, with the talking dagger as the main character. You could have Talking Dagger vs. Dracula, Talking Dagger Meets W.C. Fields, Talking Dagger and the Deathly Hallows.
So each book in the series is something of "the fallen"? Who are the fallen? Jak's parents? Surely there won't be two 800,000-word books inspired by the death of a heartless, cynical thief.
I feel that we're missing some crucial information. Why do empires go to war when Jak kills a cheese merchant? Why do both sides consider Jak a threat? Are there any good guys? What's the dangerous artifact, who wants it, and what happens if they get it? You've set this epic against the backdrop of war between empires, yet Jak's only goal seems to be to find his mother's murderer. Let us in on his quest to save the world.