Monday, 14 May 2012

Cold Fusion 2000

I realise that I haven't mentioned my current writing project on this blog. Part of the problem is that I have a folder containing about 100 ideas for blog posts, and most of them are about writing and publishing in general, rather than my own work. However, I don't want people thinking that I'm not writing and editing so I'll use the space today to talk about my current novel.

Recently I recommended the Query Shark for advice on creating a query letter to tempt an agent. The query letter can often be edited into blurb for the back of a book, since the aims are the same: to entice someone to read the work. Below is my first attempt at creating this kind of blurb for my new novel. It needs some work, but as a starter it catches the essence of the thing. Maybe I'll submit it to the Shark at some point and see if it bites.

Alex Kavanagh’s life has ground to a halt. He hates his job as a teacher, he still lives at home, he can’t get on with his sister, his articles keep getting rejected by magazines, he has no friends, his girlfriend just dumped him, and even the local teenagers pick on him at the bus stop. He can’t understand why his life is like this, since he knows he’s an incredibly interesting person - after all, his grand passion is quantum physics.

Maybe it’s because, like the physicists seeking cold fusion, Alex also wants something he can’t have: the past.

Or can he?

He runs into an ex, Lucy Spiers, from back when life was good. A spark seems to be re-ignited. Unfortunately for Alex, things are never that simple, and there are a few obstacles in the way. Firstly, Lucy had dumped him for his best friend, and as a result he’d dropped out of his PhD and ended up in this life he didn’t want. Secondly, the girl he thinks is his ex is really her twin sister, Jane, impersonating Lucy in a misguided act of kindness that becomes harder and harder to get out of. As if that wasn’t enough, Jane has an even bigger secret. The result is that she only has 72 hours to make amends for Lucy’s actions, without hurting Alex’s feelings further.

If this tightrope can be walked then maybe there’s a chance of a new life for Alex, a life that was under his nose all along. And if it goes wrong, then no-one will be happy.

Cold Fusion 2000 is a literary novel about moving on, set in the year 2000 when optimism for the future ran high. It’s definitely not a shampoo.


Neil said...

I'm no Query Shark, or writer, but I struggled with the fourth paragraph - too convoluted for me.

Also, 'like the physicists seeking cold fusion', felt a bit cumbersome.

Karl Drinkwater said...

Thanks Neil, I'll be revisiting it eventually, and expect it can be improved a lot, and probably shortened! Jane's role is complex and it is tricky to summarise without giving even more away but I will re-write the blurb when the novel gets further along.