Query Critique 30

Dear Ms. Nelson,
A VOICE AMONG THE THORNS is a 71,000 word contemporary YA novel.
Seventeen-year-old Jersey Alexa (Jax) Mason is allergic to drama. But that’s what she gets when her boyfriend dumps her on a crowded dance floor. I sort of think these two sentences could should be combined into one compound sentence, but that might just be personal preference. She would have preferred a text message. Amanda Rosenbaum’s reappearance and rumors of her time in the “looney bin” help take Jax’s mind off the break-up thing. This seems a little abrupt, since we’ve been given no clue to who Amanda is before now. I know it’s explained in the next paragraph, but the transition here could be a little smoother. Maybe say something like “Luckily, local runaway Amanda Rosenbaum’s reappearance…” The luckily connects it to the drama mentioned before a little more smoothly and the local runaway would explain briefly who she is.
Amanda ran away when she was seventeen and Jax was four. Thirteen years later, Amanda returns to their sleepy town of Rudds Mill to live with her mother. Jax escapes to Amanda’s moss-covered patio when things get tense at home. She’s drawn to the fragile, unstable Amanda despite the fact that they spar over everything. Amanda has one foot in this world; the rest of her lives in a dark place inside her mind. But she’s aware of things that Jax has never considered. Important things about hope and life. And she knows all about the secrets Jax hides. How can someone so lost in her own world see inside of Jax’s?
Ethan, the new guy in town, starts hanging out on Amanda’s patio too. Chemistry sparks between him and Jax, but Amanda cryptically predicts they’re not meant to be. They try to blow her off. Amanda’s crazy after all. And she can’t always be right. As summer marches towards autumn, Amanda slips deeper inside herself, battling her mysterious past. Jax and Ethan need to save her before she disappears altogether. This is good. It establishes the stakes. The wording seems a little abrupt maybe? Maybe just a little transition word in the last sentence, or something.
I’m aware that authors need to promote and market themselves. In addition to writing a blog and maintaining a Facebook author page and Twitter account, I’ve hosted A Voice Among the Thorns Gab Sessions for teen girls at a local coffee shop to get their perspective for the novel. I successfully raised $5000 through crowd-funding on Indiegogo in order to attend a writers’ conference in New York. This campaign also introduced many people to my work.
I strive to improve my writing by attending conferences and workshops, and taking college level courses in creative writing. I enjoy facilitating the Lake St. Clair Writer’s Group of Metro Detroit and am a member of SCBWI. My husband and five children keep me sane amid the insanity of writing. I’d maybe find a way to trim down the bio part while still keeping critical information. It’s sort of a small thing, but two paragraphs of bio is pretty long, even though it has relevant writing credentials.
Thank you for your time and consideration.

Warmest Regards,

Every Rose


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