Queries and Synopses and Proposals

Developing the Hook in a Query Letter

Sometimes you only have seconds for your query to catch interest, and a great opening line can do that. We, as authors, try so hard to summarize our entire book, instead of just picking out the one or two elements that make our book unique, that I think we get lost...

The Art of the Query, Humor Style

But something felt off in those early letters. I realized that rather than showing an agent my sense of humor, I was standing there saying the equivalent of “I’m funny.” That’s not funny. My solution? Approach my query letter as a piece of creative writing itself, one that reflected my style while still...

Using Conferences to Your Querying Advantage

Conferences can be great places to learn, but let’s face it, when you’re unagented and have a completed manuscript, your main agenda may not be the workshops. I’ve attended several conferences, both as a pre-published writer and a published one. The truth is, my main goal has remained the same: Networking....

Agent Bob Silverstein On: Query Letter Tips

First, let me tell you about query letters that immediately turn me off: 1. When they are typed on an old typewriter or, worse, handwritten and often illegible. The look of a query letter is important in making a good first impression. Use a computer! Bob's guest column is an...

Agent Dan Lazar On: Query Dos and Don’ts

1. Be specific, but don’t vomit information. Saying “my novel is about a mom going through some life challenges” is vague, and remember: Vague = boring. However, be careful not to stuff your letter with so many details of your plot that it’s confusing to decipher what’s going on. Reading your...

The 5 Stages of Querying

#1) Conceit – This is the beginning of the query experience in which you are convinced that any agent would be a fool to turn you down. You know deep in your heart this is the most fantastic book ever written and every agent who reads your query will request a...

I am Critiquing Queries and Pitches!

If you dread writing a query letter or composing a pitch for your book, perhaps all you need is a little feedback and instruction. That’s why I’m running a webinar called “Novel Queries & Pitches: Critique Series.” Here’s the deal: The key to catching an agent’s eye is a compelling query...

How to Target Your Submissions to Agents

So you feel it in your bones that there’s a perfect individual out there ready to fall all over the slush pile to publish your manuscript. Maybe you’re scouring the planet for an agent to stand behind you when the winds of rejection threaten to blow the knuckle hairs off your...

5 Query Letter Tips

It’s been a while since I addressed simple query writing tips, so here are a few of my pointers on writing good queries. 1. Give us something with voice. Agent Dan Lazar once said it like this. “Instead of saying ‘Jane Smith is tall, blonde, pretty and lives in New York,’...

Footnotes: 8 Articles on Query Letter Writing

Footnotes is a recurring series on the GLA blog where I pick a subject and provide several interesting articles on said topic. You’ve revised your manuscript to the point where you can’t stand to look at it anymore and now you are ready to tackle the dreaded query letter. Today I’m...

The Holidays: To Query or Not to Query?

There’s an interesting little article over at Writer Unboxed discussing whether or not you should query agents during the holidays.  Some different agents, including Nathan Bransford, Jennie Dunham, and Janet Reid, weigh in on the subject. A good read as the holidays approach! Happy Holidays, Everyone! You might also like:No Related Posts