***INPUT REQUESTED*** Hard At Work On Something New

***INPUT REQUESTED*** Hard At Work On Something New

Good afternoon to all my friends! I haven’t posted much in the past few weeks, because I’ve been hard at work on something exciting!

This is a long shot, I’ll grant that. But I’m working on a submission to a contest to CO-WRITE A BOOK WITH JAMES PATTERSON! How amazing is that? As I said, it’s a long shot. And, since it has to be something within his standard mystery/thriller genre, I had to come up with yet another story idea, but I’m very excited about my new idea, which I’ll outline below.

I am DYING for your feedback on this, so even if you would normally just skim through my post and think to yourself, “That’s nice. She’s writing something,” please, please, please leave me a tiny little comment with your thoughts – if you love it, if you hate it, or if you just think that it’s not for you. Or you can leave me a nice, long comment. I’m not picky.

The contest requires the submission of three parts:

1) A one-page summary of the book idea (300 word maximum).

2) A five-page sample chapter from the proposed book (2,000 word maximum).

3) A two-sentence summary of the book hook (100 word maximum)

So here goes – I am still working through the story concept, and have not started on the sample chapter yet, but I have the two-sentence summary, and a rough synopsis:


She married him because she wanted to spend her life with her soulmate. He married her to destroy her.

BOOK SUMMARY (This is only the first half, because the second half contains spoilers for the rest of the book, and I don’t want to give too much away outside of the contest):

Charlie is a happily married woman who comes home to find her house sold, her possessions gone, her accounts emptied, and her family missing. She must expose years of shocking deceit and betrayal to rescue her children before her husband Jason kills them.

She delves into her husband’s hidden childhood and discovers that his father is serving a life sentence for murder – and her testimony as a child imprisoned him. When she visits Jason’s father in prison, he gives her a packet of letters from his son, detailing two decades of vengeful stalking and sabotage, including ruining her relationships and engineering her parents’ deaths.

So what do you think? Does it sound like a contender? Do the hook and the summary make you want to read more? Does it sound like something that might come from James Patterson?

About the Author

Crystal Jag administrator

Crystal lives in Florida with her husband, children, a dog, a cat, and two fish. She spends her days writing and wrangling kids, with a bit of laundry and housework thrown in to prevent aforementioned husband, kids, dog, cat, and fish from being buried naked in a landfill.

8 Comments so far

BettePosted on9:13 pm - Mar 8, 2016

definitely interesting! I like how the husband has been planning this since his father was locked up – pretty darn creative.

MikePosted on9:22 am - Mar 9, 2016

Well, you got me hooked. Can’t wait to read it! Sounds like one of the types of books I read.

DavePosted on9:38 am - Mar 9, 2016

It could be a contender. Not sure about the threat of killing the kids, unless they are her kids, and not his kids. I would think that if they were his kids as well, the most ultimate revenge is not to kill them, but for her to know that they are alive and well, but she will never see them again.

The second part is very interesting. I love the angle about the testimony. I also like the bombshell that he engineered the death of the parents. That is one nugget I would save for the readers…I think that would be a very powerful and shocking moment in the book.

    Crystal JagPosted on10:16 am - Mar 9, 2016

    Hi, Dave! Thank you for taking the time to read and give feedback – I appreciate that! And I agree, a person would have to be insane to hurt their own kids, though watching too much Investigation Discovery has me convinced that there’s too much insanity out there! There is a twist to the threat of his killing the kids, so that the threat is more believable. 🙂 But I think the comment raises the question: would you still be interested in reading more of the story, or would the idea of the threat of a father killing his own kids for revenge put you off the story because it’s too unbelievable?

    On the death of the parents: I don’t want to reveal too much, but I do want to really grab interest in the horror of someone that hated you so much that he would go to any length to destroy you – including the idea that he would dedicate his life to doing so, and kill the people you love. The trick to that is to flesh out the antagonist in a way that makes that level of hate believable. There are bigger bombshells in the story, so I wasn’t worried about dropping that one up front, but you’ve got me thinking about taking it out.

davePosted on10:35 am - Mar 9, 2016

Honestly, I don’t think revenge would motivate a father to kill his own kids. If he has some sort of psychological disorder, you could sell it but you might have to invest time to support that angle.

    Crystal JagPosted on2:37 pm - Mar 9, 2016

    Well, the news is unfortunately full of stories of people killing their own children for a lot less; off the top of my head, I recall that one man threw his four year old daughter off a cliff because he hated her mother and didn’t want to pay child support, and then there’s Casey Anthony. It wasn’t proven, but was widely believed given her actions, that she killed her daughter for being a hindrance to her social life. There’s an ugly, deranged, and narcissistic underbelly of humanity that I’m tapping into for the story. That said, not everything is as it seems on the surface. 😉 I did remove the reference to killing the kids, replacing it with “saving her family” in my post with the updated version . Let me know if you think it reads better, and thanks again!

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