Wednesday, September 02, 2009


I promise, I won't RUNAWAY with this post. Sorry, I'm a chronic pun teller. Is that what they're called? Anyways, that's the title to the third chapter of the novel Proxy Wars: Dramatis Personae.

Recently, I've revamped my query letter. The summary portion of the novel is pasted below. Again, tell me what you think of it, bring your honest criticism, don't be afraid to be harsh. I really do appreciate it. What I'm looking for are answers to two simple questions: A) Does it get you interested? B) Do you want to read more? Thank you for spending a part of your day to consider this.

The novel centers on Amar, immortal mentor to the Magna Beasts - monarchs of the alien Mags. Opposed to them are the Howlas who are led by their counterparts to the Magna Beasts, the Howlamegas. The long running holy war between the two species arrives on Earth in 2015.  More than a thousand years later in 3096 the last Magna Beast has arisen on the island country of Atlantis. Dramatis Personae focuses on Amar's attempts to train the young Briok Cwartel. As he grapples with his new pupil's adolescence, Amar also searches desperately for a way to end the war, and thereby his troubled life as well.

Meanwhile, Howlian mafias have risen to prominence within the country's power structure. At the apex of their power, the largest boss Howard Crim betrays his protege Tory Cross. Enraged, the young Tory wages war against both Atlantis and his former mentor using the recently invented laser gun. His blind bid for power threatens not only to rip apart his soul, but everything Amar has worked for.

There you go. I worked damn hard to distill the story within those two paragraphs. Honestly, every book I've read about queries has said to distill the story even further. But I've read several query letters that got agents not only interested in the product, but also ended up starting authors on their careers. They've all had longer summaries than my two short paragraphs. So, hopefully this is good enough for them. Anyways, it's late, and I've got to wake up before sunrise because I'm a food vampire now. Ramadan does that to you. Until next time then.


  1. Reza! So I read the summary and the excerpt and I'm confused (as usual...i can never wrap my head around any concept). This actually reminds of when I read the 7th Harry potter book for the first time - i didn't get it (I KNOW IM MESSED UP). Anyway, basic question: how many books are there? And is the excerpt from last week part of the book that you wrote the summary for? In any case, I loved the excerpt, it definitely captured my interest, although I'm in a violent mood (i blame finals) and craving a bloodbath. Will that happen? I like this buildup of good and evil and I'm hoping there is some violent war at the end. But then again, you wrote I'm sure some crazy shit happens. Honestly, I want to get to know these characters more. I want to get attached to them and watch them go through hell. If I feel for these characters, then I think thats the ultimate display of how awesome the story and your writing is (I don't know if that made sense). So please post more!

  2. Lol, thanks for replying though Hannah! I'm not sure how many books there are. I'm just focused on this one book right now, Dramatis Personae. It's the first in a possible series of course. I'm just not sure how many books that series entails. And yes, the excerpt from last week is a part of the book that I wrote a summary about this week. I'm only going to be posting about Dramatis Personae for the foreseeable future.

    And yes, there is some bloodshed, but no wars in this book. I know, I'm sorry. But like the second paragraph states, there are mafias involved so you'll get to see loads of violence, just not on the Lord of the Rings scale. Yet. Who knows?

    I hear you about the characters. Maybe next week I'll post something either about them or featuring them. Thanks for your feedback! I really do appreciate it.

  3. In one way I'm interested, in another I'm not. I think the problem might be that you're so foreign word heavy in your first four sentences or so... In another note, I had no idea that this 'Amar' guy was your main character of this novel until this post. I assumed it was Briok because of how you spoke of him and etc. Oh, and your second sentence is a fragment, or at the least sounds weird.

    Like the last query letter, there's just something 'clunky' about this one, something too formal and at the same time a little scatterbrained. In fact, the part that I become interested at is when you say "Dramatis Personae [...]" because that's where your discussion of the plot starts, which is what is engaging to me. I think maybe you could work in the facts of the story more fluidly from that point on? Just something to think about. I don't know how to explain it, but the latter part of the query letter also uses utilizes better word choice. An example of this incorporation might be, "Dramatis Personae focuses on Amar, a mentor to the young Briok Cwartel, who the Magna Beast or the monarch of the alien species Mags." or something. I'm a little tired so perhaps my example isn't on the mark...

    And I don't think there's anything WRONG with a long query letter. I think that people tell young authors that because we have a tendency of rambling about our stories, and since agents/publishers are busy they give us a limit because they want us to stand a chance and not lose their interest because we send them a three page query letter. :)