Thursday, April 30, 2009
Guess the Plot
1. Teenager Brenda Nockworth discovers a pair of shades on a shelf in the bus station bathroom and puts them on to complete her swank rebel look. She soon realizes they reveal the unseen -- dozens of ghosts and ghouls among the weary travelers.
2. Mariana's family are fortune-tellers by trade, but all she sees in the crystal ball are visions of disaster... And the latest one is about her own future! Also, a talking fruitbat.
3. John knew he shouldn't have bought those cursed sunglasses; now he can't get them off, and he has to fight off a zombie invasion while wearing shades that practically blind him. Good thing his geeky best friend Alvin is around to tell him what's going on... if only Alvin can stop being distracted by the hot zombie leader.
4. Tina has been cast in a new TV show about London vampires. Funny thing is, the male lead never comes out of his trailer unless he's on set. Tina's sure he's a real vampire. Can she confront him without getting bitten?
5. When Jasmine has a psychic vision of her rival Marissa dying at the hands of a serial killer, she's tempted to say nothing, but eventually she tells hunky police detective Eric. Now Jasmine's having visions that indicate she should have kept her mouth shut. Has she become the killer's next target?
6. When Ned founded the Dark Visions sunglasses company he didn't expect it to become popular with the dead-doesn't-mean-gone crowd, but if they're not after his blood, he's not going to complain about the extra publicity. Then he finds out what his sunglasses enable the living-impaired to see...
Jasmine Winters is psychic. She knows it is not normal to be psychic, but Jasmine likes to pretend she is normal. So, she does life’s normal things: [We're plodding along here like a tortoise. That story where the tortoise beats the hare? Fiction.] enjoying her friends, like Mark; hating her enemies, [How many enemies does she have?] like Mark’s wife Marissa; and ignoring the visions as best she can. She also tries to do the right thing, though she doesn’t always succeed. [Vague.]
When Jasmine's psychic vision shows Marissa murdered by a headline-making serial killer, she wants to ignore the vision and be done with Marissa once and for all. [Nice. What, exactly, did Marissa do to deserve this?] But Jasmine’s conscience won’t let her, and she warns her nemesis. [When my enemy who wouldn't mind seeing me dead tells me she had a vision in which I was murdered, my first thought is that she's planning to kill me. And I'd better kill her first.] [The first two paragraphs can be condensed to: Jasmine Winters tries to be normal--enjoying her friends, hating her enemies, hiding her psychic abilities--but when she "sees" her nemesis Marissa murdered by a serial killer, her conscience won't let her keep quiet.]
With that done, Jasmine is ready to move on. But, in Dark Visions, my 97,000-word thriller, moving on isn’t so easy.
Mark urges Jasmine to discuss her vision with police investigating the serial murders. [Because he knows the cops are always eager to have input from psychics.] Unable to refuse Mark’s request and trying to do the right thing, Jasmine reluctantly meets with handsome police Det. Eric Mathers. While Jasmine likes the close proximity to Det. Mathers, she’s not enamored of her new visions of the serial killer. [Don't be coy. What does she see in her new visions?]
Things get complicated when Jasmine’s involvement in the case makes the news, putting her on the serial killer’s radar. For a psychic who saw [could see] her own future, this might be alright, but Jasmine isn’t that kind of psychic. [She's more like Kreskin. She can tell you what number you're thinking of, assuming she planted you in the audience and told you what number to think of.]
Not liking the idea of a serial killer lurking in the one future she is blind to, Jasmine dedicates herself to helping Det. Mathers find the killer.
[Jasmine: Detective, I've decided to dedicate myself to helping you find the serial killer.
Mathers: Great. For starters, there's someone I need you to interview. He lives in the Australian Outback.]
As Jasmine and Det. Mathers get closer, new, disturbing visions emerge, but not of the serial killer, of Det. Mathers [dressed in a leather thong and holding a whip].
As Jasmine’s visions of Det. Mathers and serial killer increase, she realizes the killer may be closer than she thought. Jasmine must put the pieces together and find the killer, before the killer finds her. [Everything in this paragraph was already implied.]
Dark Visions is my first novel. By training, I am a journalist and have worked as a night general assignment reporter for The Kansas City Star, where I covered crime and spot news. After leaving the newspaper, I worked mainly in trade media, editing several publications, including Campus Crime.
I’d love to send you the complete Dark Visions manuscript. Thank you for your consideration.
Whether Mark's the serial killer or a love interest or neither, he isn't doing anything important in the query.
As Jasmine tries to live like a normal person and ignore her visions, I assume it's not known to Mark and Marissa and the cops that Jasmine's visions always come to pass (if they do). So why would anyone believe her?
Which is more likely when a serial killer learns that the police are using the services of a psychic to track him down?
1. He immediately makes plans to kill the psychic.
2. He celebrates the obvious fact that the police don't have a clue to his identity by going on a new killing spree.