[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 483: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
[phpBB Debug] PHP Warning: in file [ROOT]/includes/bbcode.php on line 112: preg_replace(): The /e modifier is no longer supported, use preg_replace_callback instead
Query letters : Conversation question • Writing Forum | WritersDigest.com

Query letters

Every month in Writer's Digest's InkWell section, we pose a question related to the writing life. Tell us your thoughts.
kbreezee
Private E-1
 
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2011 11:34 am

Query letters

Postby kbreezee » Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:56 pm

okay so for my new years resolution i want to get my book published or at least start sending out Query letters to agents. I found a great site explaining the format of the letter, but I was just wondering do I want to tell the whole plot of the store and give away the ending of it as well?
Here is the site I found-
http://www.agentquery.com/writer_hq.aspx

User avatar
mammamaia
Vice Commander in Chief
 
Posts: 7151
Joined: Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:39 pm

Re: Query letters

Postby mammamaia » Fri Jan 06, 2012 10:08 am

as an editor, i'm on the side of including the ending, since i don't want to be teased and i'd need to know how it turns out in order to tell if it's anything i'd want to bother with... and don't like being forced to request the ms to be able to do so... i suspect most agents would feel the same, as their time is precious and the sooner they can decide whether it's worth considering or not, the better...

i know others will say not to, but i consider that to be amateurish teasing and, as an editor or agent, wouldn't expect professionals to descend to that level...
ALL 6 e-book collections of my work are FREE...email me with "want free books" in subject line and include a message.

FREE writing help/mentoring: http://www.saysmom.com

"You must BE the change you wish to see in the world." Gandhi

User avatar
allz28
Captain
 
Posts: 1433
Joined: Mon Jul 19, 2010 3:34 am
Location: Little Rock, AR

Re: Query letters

Postby allz28 » Fri Jan 06, 2012 10:19 am

It can go either way.

The important thing is that you clearly convey what your story is about and do so in a way that will make an agent want to look at the manuscript. Sometimes that means including the ending, sometimes not.
Last edited by allz28 on Fri Jan 06, 2012 3:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
wdarcy
Major
 
Posts: 1703
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2008 4:13 pm

Re: Query letters

Postby wdarcy » Fri Jan 06, 2012 11:06 am

My understanding is that although a synopsis must tell the ending, a query letter should not, any more than the blurb on the jacket of a novel should.

--Warren
"Wagner's 'Das Rheingold'" (Oxford 1993). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 1995.

"Elements of Sonata Theory" co-authored with James Hepokoski(Oxford 2006). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 2008.

User avatar
updog
General of the Army
 
Posts: 6002
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2010 7:18 pm
Location: La La Land

Re: Query letters

Postby updog » Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:01 pm

That's my understanding too, Warren -- just a blurb. Who is the protagonist. What does he want, and why can't he have it. That's a query.
"Is it weird in here, or is it just me?" ~ Steven Wright



User avatar
wdarcy
Major
 
Posts: 1703
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2008 4:13 pm

Re: Query letters

Postby wdarcy » Fri Jan 06, 2012 1:14 pm

"Wagner's 'Das Rheingold'" (Oxford 1993). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 1995.

"Elements of Sonata Theory" co-authored with James Hepokoski(Oxford 2006). Winner of the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award, 2008.

User avatar
Elliots
Private E-1
 
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2012 11:54 am

Re: Query letters

Postby Elliots » Sat Jan 07, 2012 8:07 pm

I thought the purpose of the query letter is to generate interest in your novel. As Nathan Bransford describes it: "A query letter is part business letter, part creative writing exercise, part introduction ... In essence: it is a letter describing your project." Once the interest is there, more information will be requested, such as the synopsis which has the ending as well as all the other plot spoilers. But the query letter is not a synopsis; it's more like the book jacket blurb to generate interest.

TerryRodgers
Site Admin
 
Posts: 2973
Joined: Fri Dec 19, 2008 3:50 am

Re: Query letters

Postby TerryRodgers » Fri Jan 13, 2012 10:45 am

I agree with Warren.

The query is the book blurb and should be written as such. No book blurb reveals the ending. A synopsis tells the whole story in an abbreviated format (3 - 5 pages). Some agents will ask for the synopsis in the query letter and some will ask for it if they want to see the manuscript. If they don't ask for it, then just the query of say 100 to 200 words. Then add your introduction, genre, word count and writing experience around the query.

James A. Ritchie
Lieutenant General
 
Posts: 4257
Joined: Sat Jul 23, 2011 11:31 am

Re: Query letters

Postby James A. Ritchie » Fri Jan 13, 2012 11:36 am

The main thing a query letter should do is show an agent or editor how write you can write, and how exciting the story is. There's nothing wrong with giving away the ending in a query letter, there simply isn't enough room to do it right.

Too many query letters tell the agent or agent this or that, rather than showing them. If you write a boring letter that tells, an agent or editor has no reason to think your novel will be any more exciting than the letter.


Return to Conversation question

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests