Michelle Hauck and Amy Trueblood are hosting a Critique Workshop/Blog Hop for anyone who wishes to join. More details can be found at their blogs linked above. The Sun Vs. Snow comes from a agent contest they finished a few days ago. All you gotta do is post your query or 35 word pitch and your first 250 words on your blog and then link it over at either of their blogs. Then, you critique the five above and the five below you.
This is my query and first 250 for my upper middle-grade fantasy novel, Wonderland. It is complete now and out with my critique partners. After I get their notes back, I intend to revise like a madwomen, so I can hopefully start querying this sometime in late March/early April. Queries are one of my weakest points, so please be honest and politely tear it to shreds. 🙂
Eleven-year-old Quilla creates worlds by wishing on dandelions.
It’s been six months since Quilla’s big sister, Amy, was murdered in Wonderland, the first world Quilla created. Six months since Quilla was chased out of Wonderland by her sister’s murderer and boyfriend and promised a quick death if she returned. Overwhelmed with grief, Quilla focuses on trying to get through sixth grade unnoticed as the only deaf and biracial student in her school.
She should’ve known it would all go wrong.
Aaron, who has only ever lived in Wonderland, is now in her Pre-Algebra class with a message she can’t dare to believe: Amy’s alive. Quilla can’t pretend her worlds no longer exist. She must return to Wonderland, but Wonderland is nothing like she remembers.
Wonderland is dying, and not only is Amy alive, but she’s queen, ruling alongside her murderer. Convincing her princess obsessed sister to abandon a kingdom and return home to attend eighth grade? Not likely. Working with Amy and the boy Quilla thought murdered her to save Wonderland? Laughable. If she doesn’t, Wonderland and all the people in it will cease to exist in three days. And being responsible for the death of hundreds of people really isn’t on Quilla’s to-do list.
But saving Wonderland and Amy may require a sacrifice Quilla isn’t ready to make.
WONDERLAND is a middle grade novel complete at 53,00 words. It is a standalone novel though there is room to expand the universe. It may appeal to fans of Catherynne M. Valente, Anne Ursu, and Brandon Mull. This is my debut novel. I have a Bachelor’s in English from East Tennessee State University and work part-time as a bookseller and a Youth Services Library Assistant. Thank you for your time and consideration.
First 250 Words:
The first time I wished on a dandelion, I created a world.
I was five and three-quarters.
The world, Wonderland, is six years old now, and I wish I could say it was thriving. I wish I could blow on another dandelion and bring happiness to the people.
But my powers don’t work that way. I can create worlds, but those who live there are not under my control.
I am not a queen, a ruler, or even a citizen of the worlds I create. I am a powerless watcher.
But everything’s changing. My worlds are melting together. The seams are thinner.
One of my made up friends is in my world now—the real world I share with every other human on Earth.
He is in my sixth grade Pre-Algebra class.
I didn’t invite him, and no one is supposed to be able leave their world. I am the only one allowed to come and go.
But he is here.
My first day of middle school and my best friend since I was five and three-quarters is staring at me from across the room. His eyes are so green they hurt, skin lighter than my own dark brown, but not pale enough for him to be white. His eyes are wide, black lashes long. His pale lips are full, his teeth white and uneven. His nose is slightly crooked, his chin pointy, hair platinum blonde, almost white.
Most startlingly of all is the scar that runs from behind his left ear and down his jawline.