More Query Letter Advice

This is not my problem with the query letter, but Scott Eagan from Greyhaus Literary Agency has some good advice about query letters.  His blog post “Query Writing Troubles?  It Might Be The Story, NOT The Query” deals with the problem I’m sure every writer has had.  The query would be fine if the novel wasn’t a writing disaster.  (The blog post can be found here http://scotteagan.blogspot.com/2011/02/query-writing-troubles-it-might-be.html.)

After reading that post Wednesday I thought long and hard about my novel that needs a query letter.

Are my characters someone I’d want to know more about?  Yep!  I must admit I would love to know more about my characters.  The characters intrigue me beyond belief.

Do they have problems?  I’d say that has been covered.  Poor Alexandria has her share of problems.  She’s a foster child.  She thinks she has been forced to undercover with the ATF due to a corrupt agent.  Alexandria finds herself loving her “family” again.  Yet, there is that little corrupt agent who is manipulating Alexandria issue.  Oh, and the whole question about white supremacy that Alexandria must answer for herself.  And she’s sixteen going on thirty.  And that’s just book one in the series.

Do I think my story is unique?  Well, if I didn’t I wouldn’t try to get the thing published.  I’m not sure how you hope to get published without a unique idea.

Do I think there is a “high concept?”  I think I answered this yesterday.  Nope, it’s not a high concept novel.  Just a nice little family saga.

Have I had books where I went “Okay, that sucks and will never see the light of day?”  Show me a writer who has never written a bad book and I’ll introduce you to a liar.  Every writer has at least one dud that they swear they will fix one day.  I have a few of those lovely duds sitting on a hard drive or in journals waiting for me.  I promise myself I will redeem myself by fixing the

I answered all the stories about my novel right.  At least, I think I am answering truthfully that the novels have something to share with the world.  So, no problem with the manuscript.

Then why do I have such an issue with my query letter?!  Oh, yeah, that whole “elevator pitch” “250 words or less” “Don’t forget to get me hooked on the novel before you go!”  “Tell me about yourself and your book in those 250 words.”  That’s why!

 

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5 thoughts on “More Query Letter Advice

  1. Good pointers, Amanda, and thanks for sharing Scott’s post. There’s so much to learn in the world of writing. I certainly need answer some of these questions closely. Every writer, including myself, thanks we have the next best book EVER. It’s painful to think that’s not the case, but hopefull we can correct ourselves before we get too deep into our plot.

    Here’s lmy post on this topic!

    • Oh, I’ve gotten all the way to the end of a book (actually one in this series) before I realized that I really had no plot and nothing that moved the plot of the series along. Always a fun day! It wasn’t savable. Good news is it is so many books down the road I am not writing a query letter for the bad book. As much trouble as I have with the query letter on a book I think others will read, I’d hate to write one for a bad book.

      BTW, I loved the post you wrote today! Everyone reading the comments, please go read a post by an actual published author.

  2. I’m back! As scary of a thought as that is. I’m the bearing of good news. “Good news,” you say. Yep, true true. Today, my good friend, I am passing to you the ‘Life is Good’ blog award. Click over to my blog to claim it!

    PS: Thanks for the sweet comment about me. You’re too kind.

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