Wednesday, August 15, 2012

An Agent's Inbox #12

Dear Agent:

Being a teenager is stressful enough when dealing with cute boys, messy lab accidents, and a girl ready to expose your darkest secret, but try having to save the world on the side.

Sixteen year old Momoko Yoshimi has spent most of her life training and protecting her small country, Thonic, from all kinds of fatal attacks. She’s fought everything from a pyromaniac Han Solo to mutated crabs. While Momo has done the impossible as her super powered alter ego Shadow Warrior, all she wants is a less complicated life where her only worry is next week’s Biology test or what the cute new Aussie boy, Liam, thinks of her. But when a mad scientist creates a biochemical robotic suit with enough power to shut down New York City he turns his glaring red eyes on Thonic.

With the robotic fiend HIM’s impending attack, Momo has to tighten her cape and hold on a bit longer to her double life. While preparing for what could be the fight of her life, her Hannah Montana act becomes more difficult when she discovers the hot new Aussie she’s been crushing on is the new hero Selkcunk. Momo learns there’s more to living a double life than she’d ever imagine, and more danger than she’d dare calculate when love is involved.

THE LIFE OF A TEENAGED HERO is an action packed YA Fiction novel about a young girl who has to make the decision of a life time, weighing in at 74K words.

Sincerely,
A.S.


THE LIFE OF A TEENAGED HERO

Yamoto High
Thursday, March 5th, 10:31 AM

It’s either the chalky smell that hangs around me or the tapping sounds the pencils make as they scratch out algebraic equations, but there’s something about math class I simply love.

Or maybe it’s the fact that I have the highest grade in this class. Or perhaps the fact that my two-year crush, Raimundo, sits two chairs over from me. It could also be that my best friend, Jessica, shares this class with me. Although I think it’s because th--

Bzzzzzt!

I jump and drop my pencil; it clanks against my desk loudly. Curling my nails into my palm, I bite my bottom lip and glance to my left, then my right. No one heard that right?

“Was that someone’s phone going off?” Mr. McBride asks, looking at us over his shoulder. I swallow. My fingernails continue to vibrate. I have to get out of here.

As Mr. McBride’s question is answered with silence, I glance over to Jessica. Her watery blue eyes are locked on the board, her nose crinkled slightly as she tries to understand how to use “u” to find “x”.

I cough, burning a hole through the side of her blonde curls with my eyes, praying that she’ll turn to see me. The magnetic strips inside my color-changing nail polish are shifting from pale pink to a darker, more vibrant pink.

No, no, no! Don’t get darker! I silently plead.

10 comments:

Delia said...

Ahhh! Superheroes! Saving the world from mad scientists? Yes, please. I love this.

The voice in the first page is fantastic. I love that her bat signal, as it were, is her nail polish. And who sits there reflecting on why they love math class so much? She does, and it's awesome.

I can't wait to see this between book covers.

So much good luck!

G.B. Skye said...

This is great. On your query: I thought the first paragraph was a little generic. It was when I hit your second paragraph that I was really drawn in, and after that I was like, MUST READ. The first para does work as a good intro to the 2nd one, though, so I've got mixed feelings on it. And I wasn't sure if HIM was an acronym, and if so what for.

These are tiny details though. Overall your query definitely sold me! You do such a terrific job of setting it up as a superhero story right away. I feel like I know the world even from this short blurb in the query. That's some great writing, there. Nice voice in the query, too. Good stuff!!!

Great opening page, too! I wish we had more than 250 words here so I could see where this was going next. This sounds like such a fun story. I would definitely keep on reading!

Jennifer Malone said...

I swear I'm not a Star Wars freak (though I did get to work the press junket and premiere when I worked for Fox!) but I think Hans has an S on the end (Hans Solo versus Han Solo).

I love so much about this. The first line is great (love when writers use different senses other than visual to set a scene!), the nail polish detail is awesome, the premise is really fun and her name is definitely catchy. Actually the only thing that tripped me up a little was the name of her small country because when I read Thonic something about it made me picture a futuristic country and then to hear NYC and Australia mentioned was jarring. I guess I'm just thinking of most superhero cities (though I know yours is a country) having some variation of a name meaning big city (Metropolis, etc.) This could just be something that would only bother me and no one else!! If I'm being honest, I'm not totally crazy about the title. It seems a little reminiscent of some recent(ish) books (says the girl who cribbed hers from a song title and a cheesy 80's movie and has no place to speak) but I also think it doesn't have as much energy and unique detail as both the query and first 250 show the story to have! Not a huge deal because agents and publishers change titles all the time after acquiring, but maybe something snappier would help it stand out in a submission inbox. Even changing Hero to Superhero would help it, for me! And maybe an adjective before "Life" (The Something Life of a Teenage Superhero)? I would definitely love to read more of this, though!!! Perhaps I'm a fangirl after all:)

Kristy Shen said...

I love your voice and concept!

I'm not sure math class is the best way to start a novel ( writing books say to start in the middle of some major action) but your writing is so good, I would definitely read on.

Well done,

Aimee L. Salter said...

I like this! It's different and your voice is clear in it. I'd have to read more to get a feel for whether it would hold my interest long term, but your premise definitely workds for me.

The only comment I have is... "Selkcunk"? When I think that word it sounds rude. When I said it out loud my husband jerked around and said "What did you say?!"

So... um... maybe consider changing a couple letters or something?

But that's a big nothing in the critique stakes. Well done!

Deserae McGlothen said...

Okay, I pretty love this. The query gives me a clear view of what Momo's up against and what's at stake and also hints at love? You know I'm sold.

Because I don't have much to say regarding the query, I'll briefly add that I really enjoyed the first 250. The onomatopoeia and "Spidey-sense" totally read classic superhero comic sprung to life. Not to mention I adore Momo as a character name (I may or may not have adopted a kitty named this very thing). Overall, I enjoyed this entry.

Fingers crossed, Author,
Deserae

Nazarea Andrews said...

I think your query is catchy, but some of the references (the pyro Han Solo, HIM) confuse me. I do like it though.

I also like the opening 250. She's very grounded...and then she's not. Nicely done! :)

Robin said...

The 1st paragraph of your query seems generic and the last clause doesn't seem to flow, but the rest of the query hooked me.

Fun 1st 250-I always liked math class myself, and her fingernail polish being her "call" is fun.

I would read more.

Good luck!

The Agent said...

To be honest, I found this query confusing--which is too bad, because I think there's a good story here! I like the concept of a teenage superhero.

I think the first paragraph of the query is unnecessary. It feels a little cliched, and doesn't tell me anything. I'd rather see that space used to tell me a little more about the world: is Thonic on Earth? Why does it get attacked so often? Why does Momo have to save it? What are her powers? Is her identity secret? I'm afraid all the references also were hard for me to parse: what, exactly, makes a pyromaniac Han-Solo-like? I want to know a little more about Momo, Thonic, and the types of attacks she fights off, before we get into the plot.

The first page has some good details, but again, I found the descriptions going by a little too fast--I had to read it twice to realize it was her fingernails vibrating, and I'm having trouble imagining that. In a story this complicated, it's fine to take longer getting to the action so the reader isn't confused.

Anonymous said...

What you have here seems great! I love how the story started and if this were a book, it would be something to pick up. The nail polish thing is so cool, I recently found some nail polish that changes colors in the sun and it reminds me of that. I wish you the best of luck with this story, it seems like a best seller.