Jaime Questell (jaimequestell on QT) has signed with agent Patricia Nelson of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, LLC.
As for inspiration, I had a song I couldn't get out of my head, and it inspired the short story that became the first chapter. My critique group liked the short story so much, they urged me to continue writing, so I made it my project for NaNoWriMo 2012.
Dear Ms. Nelson
I am writing to seek representation for my novel BY A CHARM AND A CURSE. Complete at 65,000 words, it's a standalone Young Adult Contemporary Fantasy told from two points of view.
A walking, talking bundle of low self-esteem, seventeen-year-old Emma is seduced by the boy in a carnival fortune-telling booth, and kisses him. But with the kiss comes a curse, and immediately Emma’s skin petrifies until all she can feel is a brutal cold. Trapped within the confines of the carnival and taken away from her family and friends, she learns that the only way she can free herself is by passing on the curse to another rube.
Thanks to the charm protecting LeGrand’s Carnival Fantastic, apprentice carpenter Alan is preternaturally lucky. Ever since he and his mom joined the carnival, he has never experienced any hardship, much less heartbreak. When the new girl shows up, he desperately wants to help her, but doing so means putting himself at risk of being the next recipient of the curse.
Alan and Emma are convinced they’ve found a solution – Emma won’t just pass on the curse, she and Alan will break it. They search for any information about the origins of the curse but the charm begins to weaken as a result, endangering everyone who calls LeGrand’s home, and they must decide if the cost of their own happiness is worth the destruction of the carnival.