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Shadow_Ferret
08-28-2006, 04:26 PM
OK. I think I'm at the point where I want to start at least researching, and starting a rough draft, for my query letter for my novel.

Are there any decent websites or books out there that can teach me how to write a query letter? I've never written one before (short stories don't require them so much) and haven't the foggiest idea of what it's supposed to contain or do.

If there's hundreds of threads on this already, sorry, just point me to those threads and I'll be on my way. (For instance, I'm sure the Uncle Jim thread has something, but what page?)

Thanks.

Perks
08-28-2006, 04:35 PM
Hey you. I know you'll disagree, so let's just get that out of the way right now.

But I do have some experience with this. If you research queries on the web, you are going to get so much contradictory information, it'll make your head explode. There is a good series of threads about this on the FAQ board (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=30725).

The hardest part is getting a short (I mean really short - like a few sentences short) synopsis of your plot that feels complete and builds curiosity at the same time. At first, I'd focus on that. The rest is just a business letter - very easy. And, of course, each agent or editor has their own requirements for what they want in a query.

Go ahead - let me have it. I know you don't believe me.

Thomma Lyn
08-28-2006, 04:48 PM
Here's a thread on the AW Share Your Work Forum:

Query Letter Resources (http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=21248)

Lots of great info here. You'll be asked for a password to the Share Your Work forum when you click on the link: it's vista.

ChaosTitan
08-28-2006, 07:21 PM
It also wouldn't hurt to read a handful of the query letters others have posted for critique. See what others have done, and how they've done it better after a little spit and polish.

MidnightMuse
08-28-2006, 07:57 PM
And after you get it figured out, you can teach me :D

Maryn
08-29-2006, 02:24 AM
I haven't written a query letter in a couple of eons, but I've helped critique a few here--and boy, the regulars there are terrific! Cobble something together, then post it, and they'll help you find every flaw and shore up every weakness. They're even perfectly willing to go over your query multiple times as you rewrite it.

Maryn, who was most impressed

Kristen King
08-29-2006, 03:18 AM
Lisa Collier Cool's How to Write Irresistible Query Letters (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1582971552/002-7790023-8794444?v=glance&n=283155) is great, and if you send a blank message to queries@renegadewriter.com, you'll get an auto-responder from Linda Formichelli and Diana Burrell with a dozen successful query letters as examples.

Kristen

Soccer Mom
08-29-2006, 07:21 AM
And for when you feel like you're going crazy, try your hand at the Bad Query Thread

http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=38545

:D

Thomma Lyn
08-29-2006, 04:30 PM
I haven't written a query letter in a couple of eons, but I've helped critique a few here--and boy, the regulars there are terrific! Cobble something together, then post it, and they'll help you find every flaw and shore up every weakness. They're even perfectly willing to go over your query multiple times as you rewrite it.

Maryn, who was most impressed

Definitely! I had my query letter and synopsis critiqued, and the folks here are marvelous - helpful, honest, encouraging. I highly recommend doing that - your query will be better for it.

Shadow_Ferret
08-29-2006, 04:45 PM
Hey you. I know you'll disagree, so let's just get that out of the way right now.

I disagree that we're going to disagree. :tongue

I'd never disagree with someone who has more knowledge on a subject than I do.

Thanks for the help guys. Lots of excellent advice here. I'll have to check out the share your work section more closely.

Maryn
08-29-2006, 05:10 PM
I disagree about Lisa Collier Cool's book--great for what it is, perhaps, but it's not about fiction and isn't particularly helpful if it's a fiction query you're struggling with.

Maryn, who's lost track of who writes what