Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Get Yer Queries Ready!

I've posted about queries before but, let's face it, I'm no expert. Let's look at the stats:

Books written: 1
Books ready for querying: .8
Query Drafts so far: 8
Queries sent to agents: 0
Successful queries: 0

See? I've read some stuff, but I really don't have the experience to back up my ramblings.

Which is why I'm joining Deanna Barnhart's Gearin' Up To Get An Agent Blogfest. It's lasting the whole month of July, with a different exercise each week to make sure I'm ready to send the query out. Since I REALLY want to be querying by the end of July (we'll see how fast this next edit goes), this is perfect timing for me.

Even more perfect? Elana Johnson's Authors' Advisory call is coming up this Thursday!! [Go to the Author's Advisory site Thursday at 8:45 EDT (or now) for complete call-in details.] Many of you sent in your queries, those queries have been forwarded to Elana, and she's going to break them down for us while talking about how to write a query that will make the agents drool! Since we didn't get the maximum number of queries, I submitted mine, too, and I'm excited to watch Elana tear it apart!

It's gonna be great! Make sure you call in! Come 15 minutes early to ask Elana all about her debut novel, POSSESSION.


  1. Querying is frustrating and scary. Good luck. Can you explain a little more about what and where Elana is doing her thing. I was a bit confessed. Thanks.

  2. I meant confused. I'm a bit tired this morning:)

  3. Oh, fine! I've been watching that but since I've been in the editing throes to get ready to submit my whole ms on July 1st, I didn't want to commit. But I'm taking off a couple of weeks in July just so I can read (I'm going through withdrawal), and my to read stack keeps getting taller. This might be just what I need because I SERIOUSLY suck at even writing a pitch much less a query. *sigh*

    LOVE the note. It made me lol.

  4. Angie--welcome to my blog! I added a clarification above (in red).

    And thanks--I can use luck. We all can.

    Donna--what?! You laughed at my perfect query letter? I'm gonna get so many agents with that bad boy. Then we'll see who's laughing.

  5. Robin, I think you nailed the query! Future Stephenie Meyer is right:)

  6. Deana--oh, well, I guess I don't need the help after all! :D Hahahahahahaha!

  7. I love the handwritten query. A few droplets of blood might make it even better!

  8. Jenny--oh! Good idea. So then the agent will really know I've bled for my work! You're a genius!!

  9. Queries are so daunting! I found in college, it was easier to write an 8-page paper than a 2-page paper. We get so paralyzed by fear and obsessed with reading endless articles about queries, that we never actually write the darn thing. At some point, we just have to say the heck with it, write the query, send it out, and hope for the best.

  10. Queries can be so hard and scary in the beginning. Always a good idea to get them evaluated by a keen eye so when you send them off they're "drool-worthy" as you said. LOL.

    Good luck, girl! Oh, and BTW, loved the mock-up query up there. HA!

  11. Phil--I heard that an author once put at the bottom of an email "sorry so long--I didn't have time to make it shorter." :)

    Oh, and with queries, it's best to write them, finish editing your book, rewrite the query a few times, THEN send it out. :)

    Anita--alpha/beta/omega readers are just as important for queries as they are for your book! :)

  12. Hi! :) I signed up for the blogfest as well, even though I still need to finish my MS...but you know what they say, "Practice makes Perfect." Lol! Definitely wanting to check out Elena's Query Massacre, I mean, Critique. ;)
    I really don't think you need help with writing queries though, the one you posted looks perfect to me!

  13. Amanda--LOL! We totally need to call it that. Elana's Query Massacre. Lovely ring to it.

    You're right about my query, though. It IS perfect. Maternal endorsement, ring of desperation, back-handed insult, guarantee of unguaranteeable wealth, and pointed capitalization on the unrepeatable success of others. What's not to love? :D

  14. Hi,
    I'm doing Deanna's blogfest too. Just saying hi to peopel at the moemnt. Hi! Now following you.

    Moody Writing

  15. Welcome, Mooderino! We're gonna have a fun July, yes? :)

  16. Thanks for this call it is going to be fun and I'm looking forward to the great information.

  17. Robin, I'm afraid your query isn't quite as full of awesome as you think. You've written it on boring white paper. To really catch an agent's eye you should write this query on neon pink paper. Also, you could go heavier on the exclamation points!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    -- david j.

  18. Josh--Wasn't the call cool? Elana knows so much about querying. I'm so glad we got a chance to interview her before she forgot it all! :)

    David--OH NO!!!!!! I forgot the pink paper! Now my query will be lost in a sea of white paper, unread, forgotten, and bland. *sobs*

  19. What a great idea! I am just at the very beginning of starting to think about query letters. I need to start researching! Thanks for sharing and good luck with the blogfest. I will be lurking. :)

    Oh, and spray a little perfume on the paper. That'll draw them in. ;)

  20. I am about .2 ahead of you. I have queried and I hate it in every way.

  21. V--we really need to be a bit masochistic to hit send on a query letter, huh? To query is to ask for rejection. EVERYONE gets rejected. NO ONE likes it. Yet we keep on doing it....