Dear Very Busy Literary Agent or Harried Publisher Trying to Stay Alive:
One Short Paragraph
We are seeking representation for a character-driven work of fiction. "Random Scratch" is a story that with humor and insight lays bare the folly of the modern American church's adept use of marketing and its alliance with conservative politics.
A nameless handyman appears in a Midwestern town with no apparent aim other than to help out where he sees need, but to Dan Jackson, the wildly popular, Tweeting pastor of a successful megachurch, the handyman's presence is anything but welcome as he quietly befriends both Jackson's wife Valerie and the church's second-in-command—the formidable former Marine, Clark Sweet.
Behind the scenes at one of America's most prominent and media-savvy megachurches, Oak Canyon, Clark Sweet, a no-nonsense former career officer who left the Corps against his will, runs the church's operations with extreme efficiency for his boss, the handsome self-help author, speaker and rising superstar Dan Jackson, who always knows the right thing to say, if rarely the right thing to do. This character deficiency has long been overlooked by Jackson's dutiful wife, Valerie, who despite the social demands placed on her as the "First Lady" of Oak Canyon, is making her own money flipping houses as she raises their two sons. Janice Greene is Jackson's administrative assistant, and her devotion to what she believes is her mission leads her into temptation with Jackson even as the pastor is preparing a series of sermons on how married couples can enhance their sex lives. Janice's husband Jeremy has never been a fan of Jackson's, but having long ago abandoned any hope that his bible college education would lead him to change the world, he has settled into a life of cynical resignation regarding his faith, his marriage and his role as the producer of Oak Canyon's elaborate Sunday services. When a newcomer to town, a stranger living in an Airstream at the local campground, begins to make himself available to Sweet and Valerie, a quiet coup is underway and the demons that haunt Jackson's church are brought to the surface, beginning with the murder/suicide of a pastor at the weekly staff meeting by her naked and disturbed husband. But the church’s slide has only started, an empire falling, culminating in a very public humiliation of Jackson at the hands of Jeremy, Sweet and Jay, the young, widowed caretaker of the campground.
When you’re the biggest and the boldest, the loudest and the proudest, people want to take you down.
The church as a business, a military operation, a fortress under siege, but where redemption can come in unlikely forms.
A picture of America. An American parallel.
A Matter of Opinion
Sardonic, satirical, downright funny at times, and at turns deeply moving, Random Scratch is Guzzetta's first novel.
Author David Guzzetta is a writer, columnist, humorist and blogger who spent a few years inside the Midwest's evangelical scene.
Thank you for your time and consideration. "Random Scratch" has a total word count of 92,497.
The book is available to read online in its entirety after initial discussions have determined it might be a good fit.