Tagline Tuesday

[Hands on Keyboard: February 26]

I’m hard at work training for my next Kung Fu sash level. It will be green and pretty and symbolize so much awesome. It’s physically demanding and because this particular test requires sparring, emotionally and mentally draining as well. I feel like I’m fighting to keep all of my parts together and not shatter into a billion pieces.

Add to that my blocks and problems with Chrysalis. I love writing so much, even when I’m working of things that have very little to do with my professional goals, but the tagline and subsequent query haunt me like a specter from Ghost Hunt. Before I put the Tagline workshop up on Saturday, I’d made very valiant attempts to tag Chrysalis.

Every time I ran into proverbial walls. I listed those four things over and over. I couldn’t figure out a pithy way to explain the plot. Raquel wanted to grow up. Raquel wanted friends. Raquel wanted freedom. Raquel wanted so many things. She had to overcome falling off a cliff. She had to overcome a cave in. She had to overcome PTSD. She had to overcome so many things.

Or Everyone Dies.

At least I had two of the four. Raquel and Death.

Then I put up the workshop and changed the two variables. Raquel wants revenge and the boys are in the way. She wants to kill Brandon’s father but Devlin is the one really deserving of revenge. After some editing and parring down, I’ve gone from:

Raquel just stole a Severance, the only weapon capable of destroying the monster responsible for the massacre of her people, so of course she’s hiding out in high school waiting for the opportune moment for her revenge. As she discovers the truth of her past, she realizes that once more she’s put everyone she loves in danger of dying.

To:

Raquel has every intention of using her stolen weapon to take revenge on the man responsible for the massacre of her people even though her path puts everyone she loves at risk of death.

It’s not perfect and still very unwieldy and doesn’t mention the boys but the complicated details can be put in the query. This week I’m drafting using Elana Johnson’s worksheets and my notes from LTUE. It wasn’t until yesterday that I realized there really is nothing stopping me from submission and agent games at the end of March.

And that feels good.


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