Oh, my goodness! I was so excited when I read today that I was chosen as the First prize winner on Heather Webb's latest Query Corral Blog Hop! I'm not sure if it was for Most Improved or Best of Show. But I am amazed, because there were some really great writers out there who had great queries.
I am grateful for the advice and feedback from everyone the past week. It has helped tremendously. I have yet ANOTHER version of my query that I will post.
For all you non-writers, this may seems redundant. But believe me, from what I understand, a few phrases can win over an agent or send your query straight to the shredder. So revise, revise, revise is the advice from all the experienced folk out there. I actually am using this to send for an "Agent's Wishlist" contest I entered through Kat Bauer's 'Crits for Water' campaign. If anybody sees any problems, please let me know. I'm planning on sending it out July 3rd afternoon.
I am so pleased to have the opportunity, through Crits for Water, to share THE CHESTNUT MAID, a YA adventure/romance. It is complete at 100,000 words with two alternating points-of-view set in the late medieval period. It is comparable to “Scarlet” by A.C. Gaughen. It is a stand-alone novel with series potential. This manuscript was requested after a pitch session with a representative from Chronicle Books at the SCBWI-Arkansas conference.
Anna-Maria de Savonie’s first romance ended badly with drugged wine, daggers and quite a bit of blood. Unsavory rumors still swirl about, and there hasn’t been a nuptial nibble in nearly two years. Anna is grateful, but with her seventeenth birthday come and gone, her father isn’t. He offers her up as the matrimonial prize, in a grand jousting tournament. Not wanting to shame her family with more scandal, Anna plays the demure princesa, but is determined to find one decent fellow among the strutting suitors, who might offer her more than four strong castle walls.
Cornelius didn’t give a tinker’s patch for the crown of Verdebois, but after a series of suspicious deaths in his family, it’s his. Now, which task will prove more difficult, keeping the throne (and his life) or wooing a bride? He bungles the wooing bit, and Anna-Maria rejects him forthwith. Seething, he gallops homeward, only to be ambushed by brigands. Cornelius crawls back to the Savonie castle, beaten, beggared and in disguise. With the suitors gone, he discovers the princesa to be tender and tenacious.
Letters soon arrive from the new regent of Verdebois announcing Cornelius’ death and demanding recompense – a crippling amount of gold, or the marriage of Anna to a cruel Verdeboyne noble. Cornelius, disguised as a down-on-his-luck fiddler, impulsively offers to hide her amongst the minstrel-folk if she marries him instead. His deception may ensure her safety and enable him to search for the villain who’s stealing his throne, but heaven help him if Anna ever learns the truth. She’ll finish the job the brigands started.
I received a degree in Fine Arts from BYU-Idaho, which helps in the medieval world-building of the novel. I am a member of SCBWI, MyWANA creative network, and participated in F2K writing workshops through Writing Village University.
Thank you for your time and consideration."
Again, thanks so much to all the helpful writers and bloggers out there who helped me find the weak points. I appreciate your time and energy invested in my work.