Dear Miss Snark:
Below are the first 715 words of my novel FAINTING IN COILS, the misadventures of a naive Southern girl who graduates from a provincial art school in 1979 and moves to New York in hopes of taking the art world by storm.
A thousand thanks from your most humble & obed't servant,
is there a plot?
a word count?
a category other than novel?
FAINTING IN COILS [OK to post this title]
For the third time, Becky anxiously rearranged the crackers and cheese on the round china platter her mother had brought from home. She wanted everything to be just right for her senior show, the final requirement for a BFA at Carolina College. She had scoured all of sleepy little Tarville the day before, searching for Stoned Wheat Thins, a wedge of Brie and a half-dozen bottles of Folonari Soave. Becky wasn’t so sure that she actually liked the Brie--it had a pungent, not altogether pleasant tang that reminded her vaguely of something; she couldn’t quite think of what. But she had to have the Brie and Wheat Thins because they were served at all the gallery openings in SoHo. She knew, because she and the nine other senior painting students had spent the past spring break there, camping out on the floor of the cavernous loft that Eldon Kingsley, Carolina’s most--in fact, only--famous alumnus, magnanimously made available every year for a hefty fee.
Becky wasn’t sure that she cared for the taste of the Soave either, but then she’d been off wine ever since an unfortunate episode a couple of years before, in which she’d downed an entire bottle of Lake Country Red and awakened with her first hangover and a strange guy, and then had to spend the day hammering copper to finish a jewelry project. (She’d been put off making jewelry ever since then, too.) But the Soave was also served at all the SoHo galleries, so Becky knew it must be good, and carefully poured it into the rows of stemmed plastic glasses she’d lined up next to the platter on her mother’s shaky old card table.
She took another look around the walls at the end of the floodlit gallery where she’d hung and obsessively rearranged her twenty best paintings over the last week. Even though she had stared at each piece for countless hours, Becky still got a frisson of surprise and pleasure when she looked at her assembled work. It was good, even if at her final critique her faculty advisor had noted a few too many allusions to DeKooning in the splashy brushwork--though DeKooning never painted such earthy, sensuous figures.
“At least my paintings aren’t fake Diebenkorns like that jerk Kingsley’s,” she muttered fiercely to herself, recalling how their host had shepherded her group to his show at the Frank Fennell Gallery on Madison Avenue, where his pastel-streaked canvasses sold for $20,000 and up to Texans with more money than taste. Then she sniggered, recalling how a puffy middle-aged Fennell salesman had rapturously declared, “It would be great to have a couch and a fireplace here, to really set off the paintings.” Kingsley had made some noncommittal sound and stalked away, leaving Becky and her best friend Liz bursting in their efforts to keep their faces straight.
“What are you laughin’ about?” Liz appeared at Becky’s side and gave her an affectionate nudge. Before Becky could reply, Liz spotted the platter. “Ooh!” she squealed. “I just love Brie!” She flipped aside her long honey-colored hair and popped one of the cheese-topped crackers into her mouth. (Becky worried that the Brie was getting too runny under the hot gallery lights.) “Mmm,” Liz moaned throatily and smacked her lips. “Tastes like cum, don’t you think? And don’t tell me you don’t know what I’m talking about because I know you do.” She washed it down with a gurgle of wine.
“Well, um, now that you mention it, there is a certain similarity,” Becky admitted, noting rather glumly to herself that it had been a long time since she’d been qualified to make the comparison. The past year, while very productive artistically, had been a total dud for romance--or even just plain old sex, which, if a suitable partner had presented himself, she would have settled for now and then. She must have looked a bit forlorn, because Liz patted her arm and crooned, “Don’t you worry, honey, when you get to New York City you’ll have all the cum you want.” “Gee, thanks, Liz, you sure know how to cheer a girl up,” Becky replied with a grimace. She glanced at her watch. “Hey, it’s a minute to three. The doors are about to open.”
and she steps to the mound, spits on the ball, winds up...and winds up...and winds up.
You're spending a lot of time telling us she isn't a virgin, doesn't know much about cheese and is fresh off the (not dairy) farm.
Can we get a fast ball, spit ball, or knuckleball over the plate in the first 250 words please??
Since we don't have a clue about plot from the (abbreviated I'm sure) query letter, I'd pass.