Update on attempting to get published

So I wrote a book called Gaia’s Dream, and it’s about an alternate world where retail space is won through corporate-sponsored gladiatorial combat. If a company’s team wins in the arena, they earn the right to lease retail space from the Rulers of the Sphere. The size of the retail spaces vary, and the wealthier corporations only go for the bigger spots, which are of course more expensive. But that’s only a small part of the story.

It gets really interesting when one of the main characters…I guess he’s a main character, named Gat Jones, starts killing people with shadows.

Have you ever read Philip K. Dick’s VALIS? Or the Nag Hammadi Codexes? Or any of Plato’s work? If so, you’re probably familiar with the idea of dual worlds. There is a perfect form for everything. You look around and see triangles. From whence do the triangles come? They come from the realm of forms, the perfect realm (I know I’m simplifying it, and I also make up my own words for stuff), where there exists the perfect triangle.

These ideas are reflected in ancient cultures across the world. For example, Norse mythology speaks of different levels of reality. We live in the middle world, and there are four above and four below. Even within these nine levels, there are different layers (think about dreams, and where your mind goes when they happen; or thought itself). In the bible, there are eleven different layers of heaven. And nine gates to hell.

Back to the dual ideology, there is the perfect realm, from whence all things come, and the imperfect realm, where all things exist. There is Light and there is Chaos. To tie this into the ideas of the Norse, there is only one layer of reality in Light, because that is the perfect realm, but there are many levels of reality in Chaos, where we humans, and all creatures and forms of matter, make our home.

The shadows that Gat creates in Gaia’s Dream are a reflection of the different layers of reality. Friendship City, where the story takes place, has drifted to become a shadow of itself. It is not fulfilling its true purpose. The shadows that Gat uses are the lost souls of those who might have had a life and had a purpose, if only the denizens of Friendship City had taken their true course, or line of destiny, or fate. And that is what motivates Gat. He wants to destroy the city, because he believes that it is too late to save it or change it.

Mary Gold, the gladiator who must stop him, does not really know what motivates her. She wants to stop Gat, but she doesn’t know why. It is as though she exists in a different layer of reality than anyone else, and therefore has no frame of reference from which to judge her own frame of mind. She looks around and sees fools, and knows that she is not a fool, but this knowledge does not come from the reality that she exists in.

So that’s a little about the book I wrote.

Query Letters are fucking hard

It’s true! Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

The book is easy to write, compared to the query letter. My book is solid, but I have no idea how to get someone else interested in reading it in under a page, without giving away too much. My wife says I should think about what I like about the book, and try to get that across.

So what do I like about it?

I like that I wrote it. I like the strong female lead (so few of those). I like the fact that the antagonist uses interdimensional aliens to consume souls. Maybe I should make that more clear, eh? Instead of saying he uses shadows, I’ll say cool thinks like “interdimensional.”

Or I can just repeat the same word over and over:

Raccoon raccoon raccoon raccoon.

Then the agents I send it to will just say, “Wow, this guy is so crazy, I just have to read his stuff!”

I guess it doesn’t work like that…

Back into the minefields!

Don’t worry. It’s okay. Really.

1st Draft GAIA’S DREAM query letter (book was originally titled Corporate Holdings)

Here it is! Please let me know what you think. Any critiques/suggestions are welcome!

________________________________________________________________________________

Dear Agent,

Hundreds of thousands of years from now, most of Earth is a wasteland. Its last beacon of civilization is Friendship City: a place where the rich rule from the highest levels of the super-structures, and where the poor struggle for survival in the basements. Society there has been stable for centuries, but one man is out to destroy it.

My science fiction novel, GAIA’S DREAM, is complete at 90,000 words, and tells the tale of Mary Gold. She is a veteran in the arena, where corporations hire gladiators to compete for the right to lease retail spaces from the Rulers of the Sphere. She is also the object of unrequited love from a loser fan of hers who makes a hobby out of stalking her. When the military hires her to hunt down the most dangerous person in Friendship City, the last thing she expects is that the suspect is Gat Jones, her stalker.

The military aren’t the only ones after Mary Gold. Colt Wild, the leader of the rebel group Gaia’s Dream, approaches her with a different offer: deceive the military and provide him with whatever information she gleans from them. Mary must decide where her loyalty stands. She knows the Rulers are unjust in their treatment of their subjects, and that the rebels, despite their violent methods, want a better life for those who live in the basements. Will she stand with Friendship City, Gaia’s Dream, or on her own two feet?

The ensuing adventure takes Mary and her squad of gladiators outside Friendship City, where few have ventured before and still fewer have survived. Slave traders, genetically manipulated bandits, and the wilderness of untouched nature take their turns in obstructing the team from completing their mission. The biggest challenge of all comes when they learn that Gat Jones uses shadows as a weapon, and erases his victims from existence itself.