Which novel should I work on?

I have two novels that are mostly complete, but I can only focus on one for the purposes of querying literary agents. Which one do you think I should focus on first?



Washing off the Glue
Washing off the Glue is a modern coming-of-age story of art, madness, loss, and love.

Marie’s father left a note: Don’t go looking for me—-you’ll ruin the surprise. And Marie, still in her first year of high school, doesn’t blame him for leaving: Her mother—-with her hoarding and depression and gloom—-is insufferable. Marie longs to reconnect with her happy-go-lucky dad and spends the next ten years of her life looking for him.

But from Boston to San Francisco, from Internet searches to private investigators, to visits with far-flung relatives, the search gets her into trouble. First, there’s the problem of debt: Marie runs up massive credit card bills, believing that, if only she had enough money, she could reunite her family. Second, she’s dealing with constantly feeling euphoric one moment and suicidal the next.

As her artistic career blossoms and the trail to her father finally shows promise, Marie’s psychological challenges intensify. But when she finally finds her father—in a surprising state that could foreshadow her own future—-Marie faces the most challenging question of all: Now that she’s found him, does she actually want him in her life?

The Trick
The Trick is an upmarket vampire story of time, hunger, family, and love, told alternately from the male and female protagonist’s point of view.

Vincent, a faithful Catholic, is two hundred seventy-one years old, survives on the blood of living creatures, and can perform an amazing trick: he can reverse time–for fifteen minutes, anyway. Vincent is in a long, long quest for love and family, but each time he is foiled, until he meets Helen. He’s absolutely smitten; Helen is the woman he’s been looking for. There’s just one problem: she is aging and Vincent is not. Vincent refuses to turn her-—immortality comes with pain, and there’s her soul to consider.

As he remembers his past loves-—the revivalist Christian, the flapper, the ’70s boyfriend, and others-—Vincent realizes his love for Helen surpasses them all. In the end, it seems like compromise might win the day. Together they form a family and can reverse time farther than they ever imagined, but this time there’s a new problem: Helen is not the same person she was before, and this is not the life she wants for her human daughter. Can their love survive the merciless march of time?

The first two paragraphs

I will be sharing snippets from my novel Washing off the Glue in the hopes of getting some constructive feedback.

The first two paragraphs:

Marie came to Burning Man to let go of a memory.

Ten long years of searching for Dad, and she had nothing to show for it. What if he’s sick? What if he’s dead? She had no way of knowing. That’s the part that killed her. Rachel, her best friend and roommate, was probably right: She should give up the search and start living in the present.

I am told “absent or missing fathers” are a cliche in novels, but I’d like to think I have a novel (so to speak) approach. It’s not about the father; it’s about the main character, Marie, who embarks on an obsessive search for him, and encounters all sorts of problems of her own.

What do you think?

Critical