Dear Query Shark,
5 things Angela James never thought she'd do:
Melt through the floor of the science room.
Break into a police officer's apartment.
Attack her brother's girlfriend.
Throw a birthday party for a supernatural creature.
Burn a house down.
Angela had a lot of plans for her eighth grade year that aren't panning out. But the one thing she really hadn't seen coming?
A blue, winged boy dropping from the sky to completely destroy her perfectly normal life.
Angela has become a carrier of magic – a gift that she's supposed to use to better the world – but unfortunately, this new power is as uncontrolled as her 13-year-old emotions. All it seems to be good for is manifesting in embarrassingly public ways. And she's not alone. Her classmate Zeke and his sister Izzy have also been given new abilities, and they see it as an opportunity to finally get a leg up on the kids that have long bullied them.
And what about the winged boy? The one who ruined everything? He's their only ally, an emissary sent to guide them and keep them alive as long as possible, but he's got emotional baggage, a nasty temper and secrets of his own.
The magic – and the secrets that go with it – throw Angela's whole life out of whack. She worries her parents, racks up detentions at school, breaks the law … and those are the easy parts. There are creatures in the dark hunting them, creatures that crave magic and will suck it from the children's bodies if given half a chance. They can look like anyone and can be so exquisitely beautiful that it's easy to forget you're in danger until you're dead.
Complete at approximately 90,000 words, Keeping Back the Dark is a young adult urban fantasy balancing danger and wit as it follow Angela's struggle for a normal life.
I majored in creative writing at Kansas State University, and I'm currently taking classes toward my secondary education degree. This is my first novel.
Thank you for your consideration.
well, heck yea I want to read that! Nice work!
Dear Query Shark,
The 5 weirdest things that Angela James has ever done:
1. Melted through the floor of the science room (uncomfortable, especially when you land in a mop closet.
2. Broken into someone's house (but if they're not really people, is it still a crime?)
3. Attacked my brother's girlfriend (she was asking for it)
you've switched from third POV to first POV (Angela James has ever done/my brother)
4. Thrown a birthday party for an Icarus (what do you get the guy who's lived for centuries?)
5. Unintentionally used magic (unfortunately now the story of my life)
Angela had a lot of ideas about what her eighth grade year would be like, and absolutely none of them are panning out. Moving hadn't been in her plan, and neither had dropping from "somewhat liked" to "nonexistent" on the social radar. But the one thing that really hadn't been on her agenda?
A blue, winged boy dropping from the sky to completely overthrow her perfectly normal life.
Now she has magic underneath her skin, threatening to burst out wildly with every swing of her 13-year-old emotions, and only the slightly odd Marr siblings understand because they're going through the same thing. And the winged boy? The one that ruined everything? He happens to be their sole ally – an emissary sent to guide them – but he's got emotional baggage, a nasty temper and secrets of his own.
I don't understand anything in that paragraph. And "Marr siblings" is just a little too close to Melissa Marr (Wicked Lovely); trust me that's the first person everyone thinks of with that name.
Angela finds herself saddled with a secret life that has her worrying her family, racking up detentions at school, and even breaking the law … and those are the easy parts. There are creatures in the dark hunting her and the Marrs – creatures that can look like anyone and who are so exquisitely beautiful that it's easy to forget you're in danger until they start killing you.
It would really help to be specific here. Why are they hunting her? Autograph seekers? Unpublished writers who heard she's an agent? Why?
Complete at approximately 90,000 words, Keeping Back the Dark is a fantasy fit into the real world, full of conflicts both supernatural and ordinary. This book — the first in a planned five-part series — blends danger, friendship, family and wit in a combination aimed at readers aged 10 and older.
Never ever ever mention you started writing at age seven. It screams amateur hour. It's one of the things that sets my teeth on edge cause it's like "I was born to be a writer." The only people born to their day jobs are royalty. Unless you are a princess, don't mention your childhood employment training in a query letter. One of the very best writers I know took up the craft cause she needed a job where she could sit down all day. It's what you're doing now (like jumping in the shark tank-for which I have great respect) that counts.
Thank you for your consideration,
The list is funny and charming. I was all set to love what I read, but the rest is a belly flop in the shark pool.
Start again. Be specific. Revise.