Thursday, December 23, 2010

Query 48: Redux

Double-Faced

Sixteen-year-old Mala's biggest problem is her new school and its queen bees, a group of mean girls out to get her. When she meets Aiyana, a Native American environmentalist, Mala's focus shifts. Impressed by the elderly woman's selfless love for her forests, Mala befriends her. Aiyana's fight to shut down the powerful Calvert Mining Company - the town's biggest employer – for its lack of safeguards, has made her an outcast in the town. For everyone there, including Mala's mom, their boss is pretty much God Himself.

Then Aiyana tells Mala of a new mining technique Mr. Calvert wants implemented, something which could totally ruin the already fragile ecosystem. A day later Aiyana's body is found in the mines, next to a stack of explosives. According to the police, she died while attempting to blow up the mine. Mala suspects Aiyana had been set up by Mr. Calvert and his best buddy, the police chief.

In the meantime Mr. Calvert's dating her mom, and he's given her mom the job of getting the new mining technique up and running. Desperate to convince her mom of Mr. Calvert's guilt, but unable to find the proof she needs, she accepts an offer of help from Brad, a junior at her school. His motives are suspect, since he's also Mr. Calvert's daughter's boyfriend. But to get justice for Aiyana and save her mother, she's willing to take all the help she can get to face the double-faced devil himself.

My YA novel, Double-faced, is complete at 54,000 words.

Comments

I think this query has come a long way. This version is clear and logical as to the progression of the story. Now it's just a matter of cleaning up the grammar, linking the thoughts just a bit better, and nailing the voice.

My Revision

Up to now, 16-year-old Mala's biggest problem has been the queen bees at her new school, a group of mean girls out to make her life miserable. When she meets Aiyana, a Native American environmentalist, Mala's focus does a fast one-eighty. Impressed by the elderly woman's selfless love for her forests, Mala befriends her, knowing she's bound to wind up on the receiving end, too. That's because Aiyana's fight to shut down the town's biggest employer -- the powerful Calvert Mining Company -- for its lack of safeguards has made her an outcast. Everyone in town, including Mala's mom, thinks their boss is pretty much God Himself.

Aiyana tells Mala about a new mining technique Mr. Calvert wants implemented, something that could totally ruin the already fragile ecosystem. When Aiyana's body turns up soon after in one of the shafts next to a stack of explosives, the police claim she died attempting to blow up the mine. Mala knows better and suspects her friend was set up by Mr. Calvert and his best buddy, the police chief.

That's a real problem because Mr. Calvert has not only started dating her mom, he's put her mom in charge of getting the new mining technique up and running. Desperate to find the proof she needs to convince her mom of Mr. Calvert's guilt, Mala accepts an offer of help from Brad, a junior at her school. Seeing how Brad's dating Mr. Calvert's daughter -- the top Queen Bee herself -- his motives are kind of suspect. But to get justice for Aiyana and save her mom, Mala's willing to take all the help she can get to face the double-faced devil himself.

My YA novel, DOUBLE-FACED, is complete at 54,000 words.

3 comments:

fairyhedgehog said...

This is looking good, and I like the changes Phoenix has made to make it flow more easily. I think you especially need the "up to now" at the beginning.

Good luck with submitting!

Wilkins MacQueen said...

The mean bees are mentioned in the opening sentence and they aren't mentioned again making me wonder why they are taking up space in the opening sentence

Without them in the opening there's no need for M and us to shift focus in the query

I suggest a rethink: Aiyana would befriend Mala wouldn't she? Wise woman/teenager with problems at her new school?

Aiyana may not care about being outcast at her age

The opening para runs off the road a bit for me

I'd change selfless love befriends too archaic imho

and add environmental to safeguards

I dig the plot and think para 2 and 3 work better than para 1

Tighten and squeeze it down harder

I'm sure God's daughter is head bee but your connection is muddy

suja said...

Thanks for the comments. Thanks, Phoenix, for taking the time and for your revision. I'm going to work on it.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.