Yeah, I can do that. Her comments are in blue.
Hello Ms. Reid,
Jonathan Clarke has everything a seventeen-year-old boy could wantâ€”except for a beating heart.This is a great first sentence.
His normally dull existence is turned upside down when he meets Annie, a wizard who has the power to transform him back into a human, something he desperately wants.This isn't as good, but we get the idea of what's going on. Consider putting the subject at the start of the sentence: When Jared meets Annie, his normally dull existence is turned upside down. Annie has the power to turn him back into a human, something Jared desperately wants.
When a dormant evil surfaces, threatening the magic that sustains Jon's immortal life, it tips the balance, prohibiting the magical transformation. Annie meets another wizard, Jared, who steals her attention, but the three of them must learn to work together to balance the forces between good and evil. If they don't, Jon's biggest problem may not be losing the girl, but losing his entire existence."Dormant evil"? That's a cliche. You're also burying an important person-Jared. We don't find out he's really important until the next paragraph, but if he's the co-narrator, he should be the topic sentence. Consider: Jared steals Annie's attention but all three of them must learn to work together to overcome (what you're going to call something other than dormant evil)
I'd also like to see something other than "steals Annie's attention" too. I'm not exactly sure what that means.
Co-narrated by Jon and Jared, SHADOWS is a young adult novel complete at 95,000 words. Filled with romance, magic, and mystery, be prepared to think of ghosts in a completely new way.I'm extremely extremely wary of two points of view in novels. I am wary because it's so hard to do really well. It can be done of course (my client Bill Cameron carries it off masterfully in lost dog---but Bill was smart and didn't tell me that in his query letter!)
The sentence "be prepared to think of ghosts in a completely new way" is great..but nothing in your query up till now has mentioned ghosts or what "new way" they are.
If you would like to consider SHADOWS, I'd be happy to forward the manuscript to you at your request.
Thank you,Don't forget your contact info!
Dear Ms. Reid,
Jonathan Clarke has everything a seventeen-year-old boy could wantâ€”except for a beating heart."Has everything a boy could want" and "endured" seem to describe two different states of being. One more sentence about why he wants to be human instead of a ghost will help here.
Jon has endured ninety years on Earth as a ghost, performing secret missions, advancing his magical skills, and staying close to the human side of things. When he meets Annie and discovers
she can touch him, his
dull existence is turned upside down. Annie has the power to turn him (you've used turned twice in two sentences, and for different meanings-that would be something I'd change)
back into a human, something Jon desperately wants.
transformation is put on hold
a centuries-old rebellion escalates and Jon's ghostly powers are needed to stop it.
As h H
e's recruited by both sides;
Annie wavers in her decision to help him, and his closest friends may be his biggest enemies. If Jon can't find a way to overcome the dissenters, he may never become human, because he won't exist at all.
Be prepared to think of ghosts in a completely new way in SHADOWS, a young adult urban fantasy novel, complete at 95,000 words.
If you would like to consider SHADOWS, I'd be happy to forward the manuscript to you
at your request.
Thank you,MUCH better! Another polish or two, just the kind of thing you'd do after you let it sit a week and go back to it with a fresh eye, and you've got a good letter. Good job!
Posted by Janet Reid at 5:34 PM
Labels: great revision example
There you go. You can rip me apart too, if you want.