Friday, May 17, 2013

Forging Fridays - We're Getting Close


Today is our seventeenth Forging Fridays Query! Wow...sixteen, this year is flying by. Yay! We love volunteers! As stated before, I won't be revealing the identities of the volunteers for Forging Fridays unless otherwise requested. If you feel like unmasking yourselves in the comments, be my guest. But, I won't mention anyone by name.


Here is our next volunteer! *applause* *cheers* *confetti*

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Dear [Agent Name]:

PERMAFROST is a 75,000 word young adult fantasy. [Add in personalization to the agent.]
In the frozen tundra, Light and Dark each claim six months of every year and survival depends on the good graces of the twin goddesses.  Intriguing opening, but it isn't clear enough. Are the goddesses actually personified Light and Dark? Are there twin goddesses that give their grace to survival, but they're separate from these Light and Dark entities? Or is the 'goddesses' reference just some kind of metaphor for the light and dark?

Sixteen-year-old Aurora, a shaman-in-training with an eccentric passion for art, wants nothing more than to be useful to her village like her father, the head shaman.  Her last trial before completing her studies is to enter the malevolent Spirit Realm and greet the goddess of Dark at the annual coming-of-Dark celebration.  Any offense to the heartless goddess would cause six months of freezing and starvation. Great! This paragraph does a great job of telling us what she wants, what she has to do and what's at stake.

Aurora’s spirit guide should be waiting for her in the Spirit Realm, but when she arrives she is alone and unprotected; her great-grandmother’s spirit has gone missing.  Her disappearance could not have been voluntary as she is tied to Aurora, obligated to protect and guide her.  She’s been taken. 
Without her, Aurora cannot traverse the Spirit Realm or greet the goddess.  Many will perish due to Aurora’s failure How and why? This isn't clear.  Perhaps more frightening is her spirit guide’s disappearance. Not even her father can fathom what it may mean for the Spirit Realm or for theirs. This paragraph introduces a lot of information. I'd probably focus more on the central problem of the book. Is it that her great-grandmother's spirit is missing? Or is it about greeting the goddess. I see that they're tied together,but simplifying this is probably a good idea.

She is determined to rectify her offense, what offense? will there be no light because she didn't greet her? Or is there no light only if she offends Dark (as you mentioned). This should be clearer. find her great-grandmother’s spirit, and save them all.  Without a way to safely enter the Spirit Realm, Aurora leaves her beloved village with I'd rephrase this. The first couple of times I read it, it sounded like she was leaving the village in the trainees' care. Maybe just put in "and leads" right here  two fellow trainees on a suicide mission to cross the tundra.  They must find the only place where the spiritual and physical overlap – the feared frozen tomb of the goddess.

PERMAFROST will appeal to fans of fantasies based on cultures other than medieval Britain, such as Leigh Bardugo’s SHADOW AND BONE.  I am a member of SCBWI and an editorial intern for REDACTED.

Thank you for your time and consideration.  I look forward to hearing from you.

Strong finish. This is extremely well done. Just a bit of polish in a couple of places and you've got a great query here. Best of luck to you!


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Okay, that's it for today and this query. Thank you so much for volunteering, oh mystery writer! :) I really hope this helped you. It takes guts to send in a query, to me or an agent. Go you! You have awesome guts! :)

So, what do you guys think? Agree or disagree with my assessments? Discuss! May we all be tougher and stronger thanks to our days in the fire.

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