Monday, April 20, 2015

Q is for Query

Aside from all of this editing, the other thing I need to do is rewrite and edit my query letter. Since my goal for finishing the edit is to submit to agents, the query is of great importance and makes for a good Q topic. Check out the other words used for Q blog here.


The query letter is an important one as it's one of the factors that will make an agent/editor consider reading your chapter/novel. It has some basic elements and examples are easy to find online.

Some of the elements are pretty simple. Novel title, genre and word count should be something you already know (or have a vague idea of at least since they don't need to know the draft is exactly 87,565 words). Genre can be tricky at times but you do the best you can. I have this part down though I'm not 100 percent on the exact location as I've seen it in a couple of places in queries that worked.

Personalizing the letter with a sentence or two that shows you've done your research and why you've chosen to send to that person in particular is also helpful but can be tricky at times. Sometimes we are sending because they represent the genre but beyond that, it's a slight shot in the dark. Do try and do some research even though many are aware how some send out to many in hopes of finding one that requests a full or partial.
The hard part, for many are the bigger paragraphs of the letter. That is the part about the story (the most important part some might say) and the may be small bio. My bio is tiny because I have no publications at this time and in some cases the bio won't even be on the query. That makes the toughest part the one or two short paragraphs that in an attention getting, voice showing way, describes the entire novel. No pressure or anything, right? ;-)

I have a rough draft of a query but still working on the voice aspect and wording things the right way to convey the YA novel. Hopefully I can get it in the next couple of drafts.

Some links on query letters:

Have you written a query? How many drafts did it take you?


Donna Davis said...

Great post. Wishing you all the best!