Query Letter

Dear Jodi Reamer,

 

As you are the agent for Stephenie Meyer (Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, Breaking Dawn), I was hoping you'd represent my novel Goat-Sucker Meridian, a coming-of-age story about a star-crossed teenage chupacabra. The protagonist, Ralph, is an outcast in his tribe because he has no desire to be a "goat sucker"—which, if you're unfamiliar with these legendary creatures, is what a chupacabra by definition is generally doomed to be.

 

But Ralph is a vegetarian—a field trip to a chicken-processing plant at the age of 9 was the signal cause—and he believes his tribe should abandon their skulking ways and start to engage with contemporary society—a position that puts him at odds with his family and community, who cling to their proud traditions and distrust Ralph and his inexplicable interest in two-leggers (i.e., human beings). His father, Emmett, holds the 24-hour record for unassisted goat kills (72), and organizes bimonthly father-son hunting trips for the all the male tribe members; yet his son is more comfortable with the more traditional female responsibilities, e.g., gathering nuts and pasteurizing goat milk.

 

Goat-Sucker Meridian takes place in the hill country of western Texas, where the recent boom in golf courses, casinos and retirement communities has brought two-leggers into close proximity with Ralph and his goat-bloodthirsty kind, who have long believed themselves to be the last herd of chupacabras operating in the United States.  

 

But are they? And if they are, then who's sharing the obscure secret of the only way to kill chupacabras and strewing Sonic hot dogs in their territory? (They cannot digest Sonic hot dogs, but of course they can't stop eating them, either.) Who—or what—is helping the humans who seek to push the animals off their ancestral hunting grounds?

 

Because of his vegetarianism, which is now verging on Vegan, many chupabcaras suspect Ralph is the traitor. To prove them wrong, and to assure a future for his clan in west Texas, he must discover the real culprits—who may or may not be "goat suckers" themselves.

 

Jodi (your name would be Maxilla in the chupacabra language), the vampire craze has run its course, and the void will have to be filled by the next wave of fantastical creatures. Enter the goat-suckers of legend and lore, whose desire for goat blood is rivaled only by their desire to make little baby chupacabras. In short, we got a whole lot of blood and sex in west Texas. Knowwhatimsaying?

 

To give you a sense of my writing style, I've attached the first book in the 15-part Goat-Sucker Meridian series. Its title is Goat Tell It on the Mountain. Thank you for your time and consideration,

 

John Wayne L'Amour

 

Bio: John Wayne L'Amour is a goatherd and the self-published author of How to Self-Publish. His letters to the editor have appeared in numerous container-design publications.

 

Cameron Martin is a Page 2 columnist with ESPN.com. His book reviews and essays have appeared in the New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, Barnes & Noble Review, and numerous Hearst and Tribune publications.

July 23: Jessica Mitford died on this day in 1996.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

advertisement
Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).

Watching Them Be

What makes a film actor into a larger-than-life movie star? James Harvey's passionate, freewheeling essays explain why there are some faces (from Greta Garbo's to Samuel L. Jackson's) from which we cannot look away.

Landline

What if you called up the spouse on the verge of leaving you -- and instead found yourself magically talking to his younger self, the one you first fell for?  Rainbow Rowell, author of the YA smash Eleanor & Park, delivers a sly, enchanting take on 21st-century love.