Monday, October 11, 2010
Guess the Plot
In Love and Law
1. Written in the style of a Regency romance, an in-depth exploration of the consequences of twenty-first century information technology on intellectual property law as it specifically pertains to the Regency romance genre.
2. It's a case not even John Grisham wants to solve. Who murdered the in-laws?
3. How will straight-laced lawyer Jimmy Halpern manage the brothel his grandmother just bequeathed him--when he can't even seduce the new judge?
4. Allison puts off a social life to become a major player at a big law firm. Then she goes looking for love. But after falling for Brian she discovers that he's a judge! Should she dump him on the grounds that she can't try cases in front of a guy she's romantically involved with, or should she quit the law and try med school?
5. Ginevra has never met her sister's fiance, David--until the wedding. Ginevra is maid of honor. During the ceremony her eyes meet his, and when he says "I do" she feels he is speaking to her. Before David and his new wife leave for the honeymoon, can Ginevra make him see that he was meant to be with his . . . In Love In-Law?
6. Erica hires a divorce attorney who turns out to be the wife of her husband's divorce attorney. Not only that, she falls in love with her husband's divorce attorney, and her husband falls in love with her divorce attorney. It's kind of like they're all trapped in a Shakespearean comedy.
Dear Evil Editor,
Allison Knowles has dedicated the last five years of her life to establishing her career as a litigator for a large Indianapolis law firm, sacrificing her social life in the process. Now that Allison has reached her dream career, she’s ready to shift her focus to finding love. She quickly meets Brian, her ideal man, and soon believes she has everything she’s ever wanted, until she discovers Brian is a federal magistrate judge. [She discovers it? Surely his occupation came up no later than their first date, so did he lie?] Allison knows the rules—attorneys can’t try cases before judges they’re dating, but is true love worth jeopardizing her career? [I assume one normally hires an attorney before knowing which judge will be presiding, so it would have to be the judge's responsibility to recuse himself if his lover's case were assigned to him.
Judge: Sir, I'm afraid you'll have to hire a different attorney.
Judge: Because I'm sleeping with that one.
Accused: Hey, why do you think I hired her?]
When Allison learns there are other secrets in Brian’s life too, [He's also a professional expert witness and was once convicted of jury tampering.] her decision is easily made, and she breaks up with him. [I don't think you need to learn other secrets once you discover your man lied about his occupation.] Convincing herself she’s moved on, Allison begins dating Patrick. He’s tall, dark, and handsome, not to mention eager to marry Allison. Best of all, Allison can date Patrick without sacrificing her career. [Not necessarily. What if Patrick is accused of murder and Allison acts as his attorney and the case is tried in front of Brian, who is still resentful because Allison dumped him?] [I highly recommend changing your book so that this actually happens.] Everything is perfect, except that Allison can’t stop thinking about Brian. [That's like saying this chocolate cake is perfect, except that they forgot the sugar and the chocolate.] And when Brian reappears in Allison’s life [as the judge in Patrick's murder trial], she quickly finds herself weaving a tangled web of lies and questioning the same ethics code she pledged to uphold. As Allison forges ahead, searching for a way to have it all—to keep the job she loves and a man she needs, moral lines blur and Allison begins to wonder if something so wrong can ever be right. Allison must decide what truly matters most to her in life, and her ultimate choice surprises even herself.
In Love and Law is a 98,000-word novel about love, life and working with the law.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
You need to make it clear why dating a judge is "something so wrong." I don't see one Indianapolis attorney crossing paths with one federal judge so often that her firm would replace her if she were dating him. And I don't see that it's an ethical issue as long as she and the judge aren't on the same case.
The guy's gonna have to tell Allison he's a judge at some point, and she's not gonna be happy with him when he does, so the only point in waiting is that he wants to get her in the sack before she calls it off. So why does she want anything to do with the guy? And what makes her think she isn't just his fling of the month?
Wait, did Patrick tell her he was a federal magistrate judge and she found out he was a busboy?
We don't need Patrick. Just say she's moving on, dating other men, when suddenly Brian shows up at her door, selling magazine subscriptions. Or whatever brings them back together. What is this tangled web of lies and the ethics quandary? That seems to be a crucial plot point.
If this is a romance and Allison ends up with Brian, you need to make him sound more sympathetic. As it stands, we aren't rooting for that to happen.
If you have any experience with the law, you might add a line or two to that effect.