Author Topic: Agent Responses  (Read 25571 times)

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #45 on: August 05, 2008, 04:11:34 PM »
thanks David I will get those fixed. Other than that what did you think of the site?
JH
« Last Edit: August 05, 2008, 04:44:41 PM by JHMull »

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #46 on: August 06, 2008, 09:00:14 PM »
With these things, I sometimes feel like Daniel entering the lion's den. with that said here is the next version of my query letter.
JH


[Letterhead]
Dear [Agent]:

Three days after his daughter was kidnapped, with his family in shambles,  the last thing Jack Lane, a retired CIA agent, needs to hear is the DEA is involved.  The sheriff tells him the DEA know who the kidnappers are and, worse, they arenít going to take any action.  Frustrated, he strikes out to locate his daughter, Samantha Lin. He uses his codes and password to access the DEA computers to locate his daughter, only to arrive hours after she is moved to the Caribbean.

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Simlar of Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.


Offline Xerika

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #47 on: August 06, 2008, 10:26:14 PM »
JH, if I was a an agent I thiink I'd be impressed with the opening line being about you being in the CIA rather than putting it in halfway through.

Other than that, I'll make no comment until Mr Wolfe comes along to work his magic.

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Wolfe

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #48 on: August 06, 2008, 11:54:44 PM »
Three days after his daughter (Repetition #1 - his daughter) was kidnapped (passive), with his family in shambles (telling)(double space error) the last thing (use a specific word here instead of 'thing') Jack Lane, a retired CIA agent (telling), needs to hear is the DEA (Use #1 [DEA] - I'd still use the full name and not an abbreviation) is involved (passive)(Not crazy about this hook either) The sheriff tells him the DEA (Use #2 [DEA] - repetition) know(s) who the kidnappers are (wordy - consider kidnappers' identity) and, worse, (wordy and telling) they arenít going (hidden passive and gerund phrase) to take any (hedging) action.  Frustrated (telling), he strikes out (strange verb choice with preposition) to locate his daughter (Repetition #1 with 'locate his daughter' phrase) (Repetition with 'his daughter' #2), Samantha Lin. He uses his codes and password to access the DEA (Use #3 [DEA] - repetition) computers to locate (vogue word - consider find) his daughter (telling phrase and trite) (Repetition #2 with 'locate his daughter' phrase) (Repetition #3 with his daughter), only (wordy and not needed adverb) to arrive hours after she is moved (passive) to the Caribbean.  (This ending leaves no intrigue or need to read more)

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  (excellent) I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency. (good)  Simlar (Similar) of (to) Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. (excellent)

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  (good) Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles. (good)

Thank you for your time. (good)


Unfortunately, the plot paragraph is another no-starter.  This time, for some reason, you repeat multiple phrases.  Avoid repetition unless you want a specific effect.  I'm not seeing the effect here, so I'm guessing it a rough draft fumble.

Don't give up.

Wolfe
« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 09:13:03 AM by Wolfe »

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #49 on: August 07, 2008, 02:17:09 PM »
When, not if, I finally finish this damn query letter, I am going to write the best damn book on query letters that has ever been written.
JH

[Letterhead]

Dear [Agent]:

Jack Lane expected that his days as a field agent were over when he retired from the CIA.  When his daughter, Samantha Lin, is snatched from her bicycle, he turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt to rescue his daughter.

TAKEN is an 83,000 word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia.

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.


Wolfe

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #50 on: August 07, 2008, 04:44:29 PM »
Jack Lane expected that his days as (potential wordy phrase) a(n) field (wordy) agent were over when (double passive phrase) he retired from the CIA.  When his daughter, Samantha Lin, is snatched (passive) from her bicycle, he turns to his government for help. (This sentence is your strongest hook so far)  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation. (Solid sentence with a slamming conflict - well done!) Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt to (double 'to' prepositionary phrase repetition) rescue his daughter. (interesting - now this sounds like a dramatic read)

TAKEN is an 83,000(dash here)word thriller.  (excellent) I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  (excellent) Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. (outstanding)

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers. (good)  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles. (excellent)

Thank you for your time. (good)

I really like how this develops.  It will now draw some agent interest.  But to get a landslide, tighten up those remaining items.

Well done.

Wolfe
« Last Edit: August 07, 2008, 04:47:44 PM by Wolfe »

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #51 on: August 07, 2008, 07:07:39 PM »
Be still my heart!
 Thanks Wolfe, I will work on it and repost tomorrow.
JH  ;D

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #52 on: August 07, 2008, 09:22:35 PM »
Okay so I am like most writers I can not let go until I have done it on paper or if you are younger alot younger on your screen.
JH

[Letterhead]
Dear [Agent]:

Retired from the CIA, Jack Lane expected his days as an agent were over.  When his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt the rescue of his daughter.

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. 

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.

Wolfe

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #53 on: August 08, 2008, 06:19:26 AM »
Retired from the CIA (this change makes the forwarding phrase wordy), Jack Lane expected his days as an agent (wordy - consider expected his agent days ended or retired) were over (passive).  When his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  (outstanding - I consider this a better hook) Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt the rescue of his daughter (wordy - consider his daughter's rescue).

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller. (excellent) I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  (excellent) Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia.  (outstanding - I really love the specifics here)

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  (good) Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles. (excellent)

Thank you for your time. (good)

I believe you have all the elements, but you should rearrange the plot paragraph sentences into a different sequence.  With minor changes, each sentence will connect into a great query.

Wolfe

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #54 on: August 08, 2008, 03:07:24 PM »

That voice you hear is my grandfather saying stay with it until you get it right. Therefore here it is again.
JH



[Letterhead]
Dear [Agent]:

Jack Lane expected his agent days ended once he retired from the CIA.  When his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt his daughterís rescue.

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. 

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.

 

Wolfe

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #55 on: August 08, 2008, 03:31:39 PM »
Jack Lane expected his agent days ended once he retired from the CIA.  (Good setup) When his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he turns to his government for help. (Interesting, but can you combine the first two sentences?  Separate they don't flow together like a good passage should) The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  (Love this) Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to attempt his daughterís rescue. (This is good, but it needs a stronger ending punch.  Can you make it stronger?)

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  (excellent) I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  (excellent) Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia.  (outstanding)

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers. (good)  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles. (excellent)

Thank you for your time. (good)

Notice how I'm finished critiquing the spelling, grammar, and punctuation?  You have that spot-on now.  All that remains is style.

You're almost done.  ;)

Wolfe

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #56 on: August 08, 2008, 03:41:29 PM »
Wolfe,
 like my granddaddy said 'stay with it until you get it right.' You would laugh if I told you how many times I painted a outbuilding once.
JH ::)

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #57 on: August 08, 2008, 05:16:45 PM »
One more time.
JH

[Letterhead]
Dear [Agent]:

Jack Lane expected his agent days ended once he retired from the CIA and when his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  Lane uses his mercenary training and agency contacts to mount an assault on the island where his daughter is held.

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. 

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.


Wolfe

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #58 on: August 08, 2008, 07:57:38 PM »
Jack Lane expected his agent days ended once he (wordy pronoun) retired from the CIA (comma) and (consider - however) when his daughter, Samantha Lin, disappears, he (consider - returns) turns to his government for help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  (this sentence is a keeper) Lane uses (weak verb choice) his mercenary training and agency contacts to mount an assault on the island (mount an assault on the island sounds way over-the-top) where his daughter is held (passive voice)(You need to connect the second-to-last and the last sentence better.  The last sentence lacks connection and also lacks that special something I want to see with a query resolution)

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  (excellent) I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  (excellent) Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. (outstanding) 

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  (good) Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles. (excellent)

Thank you for your time. (good)

I want to see more synergy between and linking the sentences.  Can you make them connect better?

Wolfe

Offline Swampfox one

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Re: Agent Responses
« Reply #59 on: August 08, 2008, 09:30:22 PM »
Once more before four fingers of Jack and the ball game.
JH ;D

[Letterhead]
Dear [Agent]:

Jack Lane thought his agent days ended once he retired from the CIA, however when his daughteróSamantha Linódisappears, he expects his governmentís help.  The Drug Enforcement Administration knows the kidnappers, but will not jeopardize their investigation.  Outside the system, Lane turns to his mercenary training and agency contacts to launch a rescue attempt.

TAKEN is an 83,000-word thriller.  I wrote TAKEN based on my experiences in the Central Intelligence Agency.  Similar to Nelson Demilleís Spencerville, it takes place over a two-week period in July 2007 on St. Simons Island, Georgia. 

I am a member of the Georgia Association of Writers.  Stocks and Commodities published my nonfiction articles.

Thank you for your time.