Deidre Knight at The Knight Agency offers sage advice:
“If you’re serious about your career, be focused and become educated. Read, read, read, and read some more in the genre you write in. Become aware of current industry industry standards for query submission. Our agency receives 300 submissions a week. In order to stand out, your query letter must be beyond reproach. When we ask for sample pages—they need to be A+ shape. If you’ve done your homework, you will be successful.”
A seasoned veteran of the literary agent biz, Deidre advises writers to always "be true to yourself. No one has your unique voice. If you try to bend and shape your point of view into something that’s on trend—the story will come across as lacking sincerity and heart. Any seasoned literary agent spot you coming a mile away."
She’s interested and will look at query letters in the following genre: romance, nonfiction, literary fiction, young adult, and middle grade with debut or established authors.
For information on how to submit, CLICK HERE.
Many writers make this fatal, but common, mistake when they craft query letters. Instead of telling their stories, they tell about their stories. This condemns their query submissions to delete-ville.
Yikes. Nobody wants that!
The query has one purpose. To tell your story and prove you're the real deal: a writer with storytelling skills and a marketable manuscript. This is why it’s vital to write your query using the same tone and style as you’ve written your story.
TELLING THE STORY: Little Red Riding Hood skips down the forest path, lugging a ginormous picnic basket. She whistles a happy tune, eager to trade hugs and butterfly kisses with granny as they nosh on broccoli pizza and brownies.
This tells the story of Little Red Riding Hood and includes descriptive verbs like skip, lugging, whistle, eager, trade, and nosh.
TELLING ABOUT THE STORY: My story is about a little girl traversing a forest path, (unaccompanied by a responsible adult), who delivers lunch to her grandmother.
This tells “about” the story of Little Red Riding Hood, but reveals nothing about her emotions, her mission, or her lunch menu.
Which version is more inviting and presents the potential of an inviting read? Which will motivate the agent to continue reading? Did you chose the second one? Really? C’mon now! Study the difference.
Time-challenged agents will not spend a nano-second trying to figure out if you’re a writer of promise when you submit a query that tells about your story. Your query will fly off to delete-ville!
Need some query assistance? CLICK HERE for books and tutorials at MolliMart.
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