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Author Topic: Dark Contemp. Fantasy: The Children Wrapped in Strings  (Read 1930 times)
MookyMcD
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« Reply #15 on: May 18, 2018, 12:21:25 AM »


Dear [Agent],

I have peered into your profile on Manuscript Wishlist and believe that THE CHILDREN WRAPPED IN STRINGS would fit perfectly on your list. I'm not sure how generic this is just for QT, but if you're going to do this as a MSWL query, you need to say "I saw you were looking for [insert genre and description they wished for here].

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time between sifting through garbage for her next meal and competing for grunt work to pay the bills,I really want to stop that sentence here and take the next two conjunctions (and and however) and wed them into a sentence without any conjunctions.  and things aren’t working out in her favor. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen by the king himself.

Meanwhile, No. I'm sure of that, and may or may not be right about the problem I think it indicates, but, seriously, if you take one piece of advice from me, lose that one word. a prisoner has fled from the Capital with the king’s secrets at hand, and odd abilities at his disposal. I think the solution here is to start by showing how the prisoner meets the characters we know. Between eating souls, and running from the king’s personal police force; You shouldn't have a comma after souls, which means you don't need a semicolon after force, it can (should) be a comma. hiding out in the slums is the offender’s best bet. Aside from the punctuation stuff, and still thinking this needs to be reordered to have this stuff earlier, I really like the way things are unfolding in this description. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention There are at least 98 ways to have that sound more exciting and in active voice that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the capital; I'd even argue about whether a comma belongs here, but a semicolon does not none are heard from again.

Believing the trio will become a threat to his throne, the king offers them a week to reach the capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding Slums. Is there a reason he's doing that instead of popping a cap? If there's a solid reason for him to do that, I'd certainly include it. Even if it's a James Bond, "I'm going to leave you unattended to the overly elaborate death I've planned for you" thing, I'd include it. Whatever the reason is, include it. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings; OMG just stop using semicolons. Think of them as a rare and beautiful thing. The need for them is uncommon. watching the half-breed prisoner, the rare demon and the first telekinetic human shake his city down.
 
Now that With the slum’s population is diminishing, You've got a genocide going on, which I love, but you're calling it a population diminishing, which isn't very grabby. I've got the same issues with this paragraph as MGM and Pineapple. That change will fix the easy part, but I wouldn't take it at face value. This is where you've got some real work to do the group takes up the king’s challenge and surge to the Capital. From wading through the sea of over-stuffed wealthy feeding off those from the slums, to I think this is could be one sentence with a lot of more powerful verbs. Taking up, surging, and wading aren't driving anything. They [strong verb] to the capital, [strong verb] through the sea. stopping the king from filling his fantasies of a “pure” world, the trio must cease the eradication of  mankind and sub-demons. You have enormous stakes here. They're clear, they relate to everything that came so far, and--no, but, this is definitely a but--you've got wholesale slaughter and genocide happening in passive voice, with the verb being "cease."

THE CHILDREN WRAPPED IN STRINGS is a 90,000-word dark contemporary fantasy crafted in a style like V.E Schwab’s Shades of Magic series. The novel is a standalone with series potential. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Warm Regards,
[Name Redacted]


ETA -- I've watched the way this query has improved based on feedback, and should add that you've done a phenomenal job on turning something like all of our first attempts into a viable query this well.
« Last Edit: May 18, 2018, 12:24:09 AM by MookyMcD » Logged

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Arte_Evans
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« Reply #16 on: May 18, 2018, 03:09:55 PM »

I want to thank  you for your suggestions, and I have been working on editing the query once more to fit the suggestions. At the moment, with the edits, it does seem a tad too long in places, so if you have any suggestions to shorten it a bit, then I'm all ears.



[*This paragraph is subject to change depending on the agent being queried.] I have peered into your profile on Manuscript Wishlist and believe that THE CHILDREN WRAPPED IN STRINGS would fit perfectly on your list.

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work and cursing the King for her dilemma. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen by the ruler himself.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and odd abilities at his disposal. With his best chance at freedom being hiding in the Slums, he survives by consuming souls and running from the King’s personal police. Crossing paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, he finds their abnormalities akin to his, and confides in them his knowledge. They now know that despite the hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital, none of them are heard from again.

Believing the trio will become a threat to his throng, the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. Enjoying the idea of a potential group crossing his gluttonous desires, the King lures them into several trials in which their limits are filled to the brim. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings, watching the half-breed prisoner, he are demon and the first telekinetic human struggle to the top.

With denizens of the slums being axed off, the trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealth driven with greed, freeing slum dwellers and challenging the King’s fantasies of a “pure” world; all to pull the plug on the eradication of mankind and sub-demons.

THE CHILDREN WRAPPED IN STRINGS is a 90,000-word dark contemporary fantasy crafted in a style like V.E Schwab’s Shades of Magic series. The novel is a standalone with series potential. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Warm Regards,
[Name Redacted]

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Pineapplejuice
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« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2018, 01:50:42 AM »



Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work and cursing the King for her dilemma ( what dillemma? A dilemma is a choice, but she doesn't appear to have one ) I think first para worked better before even though I like 'cursing the King' the sentence feels a bit long and crammed ). However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen by the ruler himself. ( And Ruthie is one of them? You don't specif so para feels unfinished )

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and odd abilities at his disposal. ( Need to explain odd abilities here ( immediately following sentence, to explain ) , same problem as earlier drafts ) With his best chance at freedom being hiding in the Slums, he survives by consuming souls and running from the King’s personal police. Crossing paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, he finds their abnormalities akin to his ( this is only interesting/important if you explain how, but there's no room to explain it I imagine ), and confides in them his knowledge. They now know that 'that'/'about how' despite the hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital, none of them are heard from again.

Believing the trio will become a threat to his throne, ( why is a prisoner and a grunt worker and her demon friend a threat? Unless you say why I don't believe it ) the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. Enjoying the idea of a potential group crossing his gluttonous desires ( what? No idea what you're saying lol ), the King lures them into several trials in which their limits are filled to the brim. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings, ( The king continues to pull the strings from the shadows' reads better. Breaking sentences with comma's unecessarily are like speed bumps )  watching the half-breed prisoner, he are demon and the first telekinetic human struggle to the top.

With denizens of the slums being axed off ( Axed? You mean disappearing? ) , the trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians ( sea of wealth makes me picture a monsoon of dollar bills )  driven with greed, freeing slum dwellers and challenging the King’s fantasies of a “pure” world; all to pull the plug on the eradication of mankind and sub-demons.

REWRITE EXAMPLE: With examples of specifics needed or  rewording in purple

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen by the ruler himself to ________. And Ruthie is one of them.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. His best chance at freedom is hiding in the Slums, and he is barely surviving while on the run from the King’s personal police. When Soloman crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, he informs them that despite the hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital, none of them are heard from again.

Believing the newly formed trio will become a threat to his throne, due to their dynamic combination of special abilities the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. ( Need to explain how this is logical. You just said the trio are a threat and then the King offers them this task but I'm not sure if it's a job and he is pretending to be nice, and they won that competition mentioned in earlier drafts, or what's going on. I think you need to make Kings' reasoning clear, even if Trio don't know it. I don't know why the king cares about them so he isn't a realistic antagonist here )


The King lures them into several trials under a pretense of winning a competition in which they are stretched to their limits. The king pulls the strings from the shadows', watching the half-breed prisoner, the demon and the first human telepath struggle to meet his impossible demands.

 The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians who they need to attack because---------? ) They free slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world; The King wants to eradicate all humans and sub-demons, but as the trio draws closer it's clear he's underestimated the gifted slum dweller and her courageous sidekicks.






« Last Edit: May 19, 2018, 02:08:04 AM by Pineapplejuice » Logged
Arte_Evans
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« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2018, 09:24:47 PM »

@pineapple,

I want to thank you for suggestions, they've really been helpful, and have helped me think about how I wanted the query to sound. With what you suggested and the comments of what you wanted to see, I blended a recent version of the query with your suggestions; added with a few extra things here and there. (I hope that's alright)

***
Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen by the king himself to lead struggle-free lives. And Ruthie is one of them.


A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the capital none are heard from again.


Believing the newly formed trio will become a threat to his throne, appearing unmatched with their unique abilities, the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.


The King lures them into several trials, under the guise of success in defeating the King, in which they are stretched to their limits. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings, watching the half-breed prisoner, a rare demon and the first human telepath struggle to the meet his impossible demands.


The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world. The King wants to eradicate all humans and sub-demons, but as the trio draws closer, it’s clear he’s underestimated the gifted slum dweller and her courageous sidekicks.

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Pineapplejuice
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« Reply #19 on: May 19, 2018, 10:53:58 PM »

@pineapple,

I want to thank you for suggestions, they've really been helpful, and have helped me think about how I wanted the query to sound. With what you suggested and the comments of what you wanted to see, I blended a recent version of the query with your suggestions; added with a few extra things here and there. (I hope that's alright)

No problem. I wasn't sure of some things so the purple writing in last edit of your query were just suggestions based on guesses. Like with Ruthie being one of the chosen in first para, i wasn't sure if that was the case? Like, I wasn't sure if the throng of slum dwellers applying to go to the Capital for a better life, was what Ruthie was doing when the king offers the trio the task of helping him find out why the people go missing etc. Could you explain it here just in post, for me? I guess I must have been right, or you wouldn't have put it here. But it's still feels confused in my mind and having you explain it just, in talking, not in query , might help.
I'll delete my own wording of 'she struggles to survive' now as it was only to replace 'dilemma' but I think sentence might read ok ending on 'cursing the king' as it creates a strong image for me; Ruthie sifting through rubbish,  and swearing under her breath lol.

When I change to '300 lucky slumdwellers' I don't know how many are allowed to go but it's just an example of another specific that would give the reader confidence about their understanding the image in their mind etc.


***
Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the King offers 300 lucky slumdwellers the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, people rush for the chance to be chosen to lead a life of privilege by the king himself to lead struggle-free lives. And Ruthie is one of them.


A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo ( on their journey to the capital? If Ruthie was chosen, is she headed there now? It's unclear ) , the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the capital none are heard from again.


Believing the newly formed trio will become a threat to his throne, appearing unmatched with due to ( The King chose Ruthie but didn't know she'd team up? What is about the three that makes them a threat? What do they do to make him pay attention? I mean they have powers but I'm assuming most of the population does at this point, in this world ) their unique abilities, the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.( What I'm wondering is, why the King is putting them through all this, why doesn't he just kill them? Is there something about them using their powers on their journey that makes it more valuable to him to keep them alive temporarily? Can you just tell me in a note? )


The King lures them into several trials, under the guise of success in defeating the King, ( it sounds here like the King is giving them the chance to defeat him - I"m sure that's not right. What is the reward the King is offering them, or has he threatened them by giving them only a week to 'help'. )
  in which they are stretched to their limits. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings, watching the half-breed prisoner, a rare demon and the first human telepath struggle to the meet his impossible demands.


The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world. The King wants to eradicate all humans and sub-demons, but as the trio draws closer, it’s clear he’s underestimated the gifted slum dweller and her courageous sidekicks.


I think it needs a stronger ending, more dramatic with stakes but I can't think of anything and wordcount already at limit 



« Last Edit: May 20, 2018, 10:18:14 AM by Pineapplejuice » Logged
mgmystery
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« Reply #20 on: May 21, 2018, 07:47:52 AM »

Wow, I like the changes in this version and am really beginning to understand the plot now  Smiley However, I wonder if you're giving away too much for the purpose of the query.

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among thepeople who rush for the chance to be chosen by the king himself to lead struggle-free lives. And Ruthie is one of them.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand, and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the capital none are heard from again. (Maybe a short sentence here about their decision to challenge the king.)

Believing the newly formed trio will become a threat to his throne, appearing unmatched with their unique abilities, the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.

The King lures them into several trials, under the guise of success in defeating the King, in which they are stretched to their limits. From the shadows, the king continues to pull the strings, watching the half-breed prisoner, a rare demon and the first human telepath struggle to the meet his impossible demands. I think you could skip this whole section since you've told the king's intentions above.)

The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world. The King wants to eradicate all humans and sub-demons, but as the trio draws closer, it’s clear he’s underestimated the gifted slum dweller and her courageous sidekicks. (With this ending, I'm afraid the reader is satisfied that the group will likely succeed and has no reason to continue reading. Is there a point where they realize they've been set up to fail and have a choice whether to continue fighting? This would be your real stakes where the reader has the feeling they might fail.

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« Reply #21 on: May 22, 2018, 09:59:37 AM »

@pineapple,

On the King's main motivation, I've been thinking of his main motivation being greed, the need to be above all else and preserving his power.
I based the main idea on the game Little Nightmares, and the manga/anime Tokyo Ghoul, so his beliefs come from concepts based on those inspirations.

I adjusted a few things and altered the ending, (and I only now remembered that I'll have to write a synopsis at some point in the future).

Let me know what you think.
***

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among the people who rush for the chance to be chosen by the King himself to lead struggle-free lives.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital none are heard from again. Not wanting to be lumped in with the rest, the three join forces to defy the King’s will.

Believing the newly form trio will become a threat to his throne, appearing unmatched with their abilities, the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and force them to join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.

The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They fight to free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world. With the need to free the humans and lesser demons, and a future at risk of being cut short, it’s a battle for survival with The Children Wrapped in Strings.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 10:06:31 AM by Arte_Evans » Logged
Pineapplejuice
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« Reply #22 on: May 22, 2018, 11:02:37 AM »

@pineapple,

On the King's main motivation, I've been thinking of his main motivation being greed, the need to be above all else and preserving his power.

Yes It's sounds like greed. Perhaps I asked the wrong question regarding motivation. What I really meant was, is the King in the book, when asking them to do the task for him to find out about missing people, is that a kindly put request the three pretend to be happy to oblige? Or Does he tell them upfront he'll kill them if they don't do it. That question has not been answered and the query won't feel sensible without knowing it.


***

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among the people who rush for the chance to be chosen by the King himself to lead struggle-free lives.

Well First para, I personally love as it's a great set up. Any words to cut /further edits etc ( in my opinion ) just comes down to practicality and taste but I think it's good.   Smiley

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo as they journey to the Capitol the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital none are heard from again. Not wanting to be lumped in with the rest, the three join forces to defy the King’s will.

The only thing missing in Paragraph Two, for me, is stating exactly that Ruthie is on her journey. As it's nice to be able to place the characters and always when I read this para I feel like I'm waiting for you to tell me they are headed to the capital together, because not actually saying it makes the following paragraph abrupt. I love, love, love the point the paragraph makes about the people disappearing. Every time I read it I enjoy it lol  clap


Believing  The newly formed trio are become a threat to the  Kings throne, appearing unmatched with their because of their united abilities have the capacity to undermine the elitist structure of civilization he's worked his life to create. Due to their inside knowledge ( thanks to ex-prisoner knowing all the Kings secrets   the King offers them a week to reach the Capital and find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and force them to join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.

I deleted 'appearing unmatched in their abilities' because it's not explained why their powers matter to the King here, or why these threes powers are a threat.



 

The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They fight to free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned because the King has fantasies of a “pure” world. With the need to free the humans and lesser demons, and a future at risk of being cut short, it’s a battle for survival with The Children Wrapped in Strings.

REWRITE EXAMPLE: This below is an example of details I expect to hear, to be replaced with accurate ones


The newly formed trio are a threat to the Kings throne because their united abilities have the capacity to undermine the elitist structure of civilization he's worked his life to create. And with their inside knowledge, thanks to the escaped ex-prisoner, it means they have nothing to lose by fighting to dethrone him, and all the motivation.

 So the King requests a favor; Find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums on their way to the Capitol. Only this is just a ruse designed to delay them while he comes up with a way to sap them of their powers when they arrive. As the tasks get more difficult, the King is pulling the strings,  and the closer they get, the more they realize they have been his puppets all along.










« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 12:14:13 PM by Pineapplejuice » Logged
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« Reply #23 on: May 22, 2018, 11:58:47 AM »

Yes, he really just wants to do away with them, and tells them upfront that he'll do so if they fail.

I'm adjusting the query at the moment to add that part in.

Thanks for the help~
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« Reply #24 on: May 22, 2018, 12:27:26 PM »

Ahhh ok.
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« Reply #25 on: May 23, 2018, 01:22:00 PM »

I think I got it, but I can't be too sure. If not perfect, I think it's really close.

***

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among the people who rush for the chance to be chosen by the King himself to lead struggle-free lives.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital none are heard from again. Not wanting to be lumped in with the rest, the three join forces and make haste to the Capital.

The King fears the newly formed trio because their united abilities have the capacity to undermine the very structure of the civilization he’s worked his life to create. And with their knowledge of his secrets, thanks to the escaped ex-prisoner, means they have nothing to lose by fighting to dethrone him, and all the motivation.

The King asks them to do a task on their journey. If they can find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums, they’ll live a life of exceptional privilege even among the privileged, but if not, they'll die among the other slum dwellers. Only this is just a ruse designed to delay them while he comes up with a plan of attack. As the tasks get more difficult, the King plans to sap these brave souls of their abilities and form them to join the mass of slum dwellers in potential doom.

The trio fight their way to the Capital, taking on a sea of wealthy civilians, tasked with slowing them down. They fight to free the slum dwellers, who have been imprisoned due to the King's fantasies of a “pure” world.
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« Reply #26 on: May 23, 2018, 01:56:59 PM »

I think it would make a stronger query if you stop after the king makes his offer. That way you leave when the trio is at the crossroads to seemingly save themselves or do the right thing.
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« Reply #27 on: May 24, 2018, 02:34:54 AM »

I think I got it, but I can't be too sure. If not perfect, I think it's really close.I
I think it's really close too. If nothing else those two para's will get people interested I think. Smiley
***
 3rd and 4th paragraphs. I have switched them around as it sounds more chronological and faster to not have the explanation of King's motivations inbetween the Trio setting off for the Capitol and getting the task.

............
I've been thinking since early on, not much else is needed after the second paragraph, because it's intriguing. But I didn't say this because I wanted to know what else there was to worth with to finish off with. I've cut words in 3rd paragraph and joined it up with 4th. It's just a suggestion of how you might make the end paragraph punchier, as it kind of peters out, even though it tells the story well. I think it gives away too much as it is. If you can combine the two last paragraphs of above somehow it might maintain the mystery of the first two paragraphs.



Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among the people who rush for the chance to be chosen by the King himself to lead struggle-free lives.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital none are heard from again.

The three join forces and make haste to the Capital but the King asks them to do a task on their journey. If they can find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums, they’ll live a life of exceptional privilege even among the privileged. Only this is just a ruse designed to delay them. As the tasks get more difficult, the King is pulling the strings behind the scenes, knowing with their knowledge of his secrets, thanks to the escaped ex-prisoner, they have nothing to lose by fighting to dethrone him, and all the motivation. With their combined powers the trio has the capacity to undermine his goal of a 'pure world', free of slumdwellers. But the King knows if they are too distracted trying to stay alive, the have no chance to realize how powerful they really are.

THE CHILDREN WRAPPED IN STRINGS etc.

( I think my new combined paragraph might be a bit too long or still give away too much, but I think it's in the ballpark of what you should say. Though I am probably too familiar with the story at this point to know ) . If you can think of a cooler way to say it, that's good. I think the last sentence should ideally be punchy, or mysterious or somehow exciting but I don't know what to suggest.

I really love the 'sea of civilians tasked with slowing them down' sentence but saying one things lead to another thing and it sort of makes it feel like we have told too much. Love the wording though.





« Last Edit: May 24, 2018, 03:10:28 AM by Pineapplejuice » Logged
Arte_Evans
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« Reply #28 on: May 25, 2018, 09:51:52 AM »

@mgmystery, your suggestion to cut out the last two paragraphs, I think would work really well, and I think @pineapple's recent edit has done both that added more without adding too much for the overall story.

I highlighted a sentence, in red, I would think gives off a bit too much, but overall, everything else works.

***

Living as a human in a demon-human community in the Western Slums, Ruthie Souma divides her time sifting through garbage for her next meal, competing for grunt work to pay the bills, and cursing the King for her struggle to survive. However, when the chance to join the Capital’s high society comes to the Slums, Ruthie is among the people who rush for the chance to be chosen by the King himself to lead struggle-free lives.

A prisoner, Solomon Evans, has fled from the Capital with the King’s secrets at hand and the odd ability to consume souls at his disposal. When the prisoner crosses paths with Ruthie and her friend Umo, the prisoner brings to their attention that despite hundreds of Slum citizens entering the Capital none are heard from again.

The three join forces and make haste to the Capital, but the King asks them to do a task on their journey. If they can find out what happened to the humans and lesser demons from the surrounding slums, they’ll live a life of exceptional privilege even among the privileged. Only this is just a ruse designed to delay them. As the tasks get more difficult, the King is pulling the strings behind the scenes, knowing with their knowledge of his secrets, thanks to the ex-prisoner, they have nothing to lose by fighting to dethrone him, and all the motivation. With their combined powers, the trio has the capacity to undermine his goal of a ‘pure world’, free of slum dwellers. But the King knows if they are too distracted trying to stay alive, they have no chance to realize how powerful they really are.
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Pineapplejuice
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« Reply #29 on: May 25, 2018, 01:41:45 PM »

I think you're right about the highlighted sentence. I ummed and ahhed over that bit when drafting that example, so I'm glad it stuck out. Also works better now as POV feels like about the characters, then ends off on the King. I think it's good to end off on the King as one of your earlier drafts did, as it just gave a sense of foreboding .

Well, I personally like that query. I am a bit biased as my hands have been all over it haha. Even if you create more queries, or experiment with this one,  it's good to have one draft that is intriguing, makes sense, reads well and is well rounded, which is what you have. I'm excited for you Smiley

There's only one thing I"d change , and this is being fussy. But you essentially say 'struggle' twice in first paragraph with 'struggle free' at the end, so I'd consider changing one or the other or cutting one off etc as it stands out and it's not good to use the same descriptor. Also something else other's might pick up on is why doesn't the King just kill them earlier. If that's still a problem you can always add to last paragraph, that he wants to sap them of their powers himself,  or people might wonder why he just doesn't send some thugs to chops their heads off on their journey. But I don't know with my unfresh eyes, if this is a problem with this query
« Last Edit: May 25, 2018, 02:40:23 PM by Pineapplejuice » Logged
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