Author Topic: Forged in Prophecy - Adult SF  (Read 2781 times)

Offline blumorph

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Forged in Prophecy - Adult SF
« on: December 02, 2018, 09:39:59 PM »
I am looking for a critique partner/partners. I am new to the industry and am willing to trade. So I am up front, my inexperience might not provide the best feedback. I am hoping that someone out there who has some experience with writing is open to giving me a hand.

I have gotten ZERO feedback from the queries I have sent out. My responses have been dead air or form letters. I have no idea if my book is total crap or the people I have queried are truly too busy to look at my work. One person stated that all of their rejections are because the writer wasn't mature enough or dedicated to their craft. I can't speak to my maturity as a writer. I can tell you I have been writing stories since I was 10 and that I am very dedicated to growing and improving my writing. I have dozens of stories in my head and partially on paper that I can't get anyone to give me solid feedback on.

Here is the query I have been sending out to give you an idea of what the book is about:

Adam and a diner full of strangers are unexpectedly transported eight hundred years into Earth’s future. Soon the time travelers discover three tribes of humans, the Zealots, the Rationalists and the dwellers in a lost city. All three tribes live in massive domes that are as cold and bleak as their world outside. The tribes believe that Adam’s arrival is prophesied, only the city dwellers believe this is a positive event. The rest want Adam, and his companions destroyed, so that their leaders can maintain their brutal rule and cling to power.

As Adam reluctantly begins to fulfill the prophecy, he is betrayed by someone close to him. The betrayal leads to an angry Horde of Rationalists and Zealots attacking the lost city. Adam must battle his own insecurities while he races against time to make the people in the lost city safe from the onslaught of the Horde.

As he works to fulfill the prophecy and repel the Horde, Adam fails to see hidden forces at work--A conspiracy to separate Adam from those he loves while also putting him on a dark path that will lead to the destruction of the Earth and the entire human race.

This is how I recently described my book on Twitter (from the point of view of my protagonist):

I can’t believe how shy I used to be. I told myself I needed an adventure. True, I was thinking maybe a plane trip, not traveling 800 years into the future.  It was the confidence boost that I needed though. Now I am ready to change the world and maybe get the girl.

Hopefully someone out there can give me a hand.

Offline KissofTreachery

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Re: Forged in Prophecy - Adult SF
« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2019, 01:33:44 PM »
If you are still looking for a critique partner, I would be open to trading. I don't have any insider industry knowledge, perse, but I do have an MFA in Journalism and experience as a writing tutor. I have written an 88,000-word literary thriller and would appreciate another set of eyes on it before I dive into the query trenches (again).

I can tell you that from your query that while you do a good job at describing the three tribes, agents may have a hard time connecting to your main character. Who is Adam before he is transported to the future? What are his thoughts/feelings about being transported into the future and being exposed to these tribes? What is his dynamic like with the other strangers in the diner? Why is he reluctant to fulfill this prophecy? You mention that he is betrayed by someone close to him and the betrayal "leads to an angry Horde of Rationalists and Zealots attacking the lost city", but as a reader, we don't understand the weight of this betrayal and how it specifically impacts Adam. What are Adam's insecurities? What is driving him to save the people in the lost city? Who is the antagonist Adam is fighting against?

These are easy, quick fixes. Like: All Adam wanted was an adventure, maybe (whatever vacation/trip he had in mind) to ease the boredom of his life as a (say what Adam does/who he is). But when lunch at his usual diner unexpectantly transports him eight hundred years into the future, Adam is sent on an adventure that (tease what is at stake. His life, the life of others, the world?)

Here is the working query for my 88,000-word literary thriller POETS AND CRIMINALS.

Osprey charges eight thousand dollars to kill someone. For five thousand from his new client, Deacon, he’ll break into a congressman’s home in Washington, D.C. and steal a 300-year-old book. But when a skinny brunette sticks a gun to his chin during his getaway and pinches the rare book, Osprey learns that Deacon is the most horrific type of criminal.
The skinny brunette, Vi, cannot forget her tragic past. Or forgive it. Her only family member, an older brother who’s a computer hacker, discovered Osprey’s new client is a sex trafficker that Vi had escaped from ten years ago. Vi still has post-traumatic stress flashbacks, but the now twenty-two-year-old English major copes with her panic attacks by imagining Shakespearean revenge being inflicted on Deacon. And especially his boss, Ubel.

Convinced that living out her revenge fantasy will give her closure, Vi sweet-talks Osprey into swapping the book for Deacon’s whereabouts. That’s surprisingly easy, but Osprey’s compassion and kindheartedness surprise her even more. Vi, nonetheless, is determined to get by with mediocre marksmanship and inspiration from the revenge literature she studies. She ditches Osprey and hunts down Deacon, but questions if she can live with herself after exacting vengeance. While her depression deepens, Ubel kidnaps her brother to get Vi back under his thumb. Vi hopes to rescue her brother. She hopes to kiss and make up with Osprey. But first, she must fight Ubel for her life, her mental health, and a non-tragic end to her revenge.

If you are interested in swapping stories, feel free to message me. We can work out timelines and exactly what kind of critique you are after.