1. Athenian94

    Athenian94 New Member

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    Query Letter Query critique, Fantasy 95k words

    Discussion in 'Query & Cover Letter Critique' started by Athenian94, May 18, 2021.

    Any feedback is appreciated!

    Every High King selects Keepers to protect him… however this King chose ones that secretly want him dead.

    No soul wants to kill the new High King more than young Dagny Silversight, the lost exiled princess of the former King. Dagny— armed with a grudge, dark powers, and the knowledge and uncanny abilities of Moratheen’s most mysterious and all-seeing cult — wants revenge for her slain family. She is going to help the Keepers to do just that.

    Once a timid child, Dagny finds herself leading the three bickering Keepers: a doctor from a colonized race who wants justice for her people, a veteran knight seeking to end a witch’s curse, and an immortal pirate who wants…. well, the King’s supply of wine. One problem: they believe only one can get what they want.

    After a comedy of errors where the Keepers thwart each other’s assassination attempts, the fearful King goes into hiding. Now their biggest enemy is each other. The three plunge every province into civil war in a race to find the King. Now their only hope in finding him rests in the hands of Dagny and her dark affiliations. So she fights to mend her newfound family so they can do what normal family’s do and commit regicide.

    The four motley heroes stumble over one another to end the King’s reign, life, and belief that all heroes are good.
     
    GrittyWriter likes this.
  2. Mckk

    Mckk Member Supporter Contributor

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    Love the Jack Sparrow vibe from the immortal pirate. While it sounds funny and intriguing, I think you lost the plot a little. Your first paragraph starts out rather dark with the mention of exile, dark powers and some mystery cult - and it ends with a comedy of errors. The tone's not consistent. The goal starts off as murder the king and by the end we find the goal is to mend Dagny's "newfound family", yet in what way they've become her family is unclear.

    You want to establish the character's "lie", her story goal, and ultimately, the truth that she needs - and illustrate in what way the plot helps her realise the truth. If you can establish these things, the stake will show itself. Right now, there's no stake.
     
  3. Bruce Johnson

    Bruce Johnson Senior Member

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    Is Dagny one of four Keepers?
     
  4. Idiosyncratic

    Idiosyncratic Member

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    Currently Reading::
    Six of Crows
    You definitely have an interesting set-up here, with a king surrounded by people who definitely want to kill him. However, what's the tone for this piece supposed to be? The king's absolutely laughable incompetence when choosing advisors and the fact that they apparently keep foiling each other's plots is prime comedy material and indeed comes off as pretty ridiculous in a non-comedy setting. However, other chunks of the query seem to take themselves pretty seriously, such as the second paragraph. I'd recommend trying to keep a consistent tone throughout, particularly at the beginning.

    The other main issue is that you're covering so much ground that you're forced to jump around and it becomes hard to follow and connect the pieces. They're starting a civil war now what? Why? How? Since when are they family? How did they go from a race to find the king to working together? One easy solution would be to just cover the beginning of the book, and flesh the beginning out with more specifics. Our protagonist wants to kill the king, and weasels her way into being one of his protectors. It turns out all of his other protectors want to kill him also, but they keep foiling each other's plots. Maybe go as far as the king goes into hiding and now they're in a race to track him down because each wants to kill him first. The civil war is probably too far.
     

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