Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Query Event

Have you finished your manuscript?  Are you ready to start submitting to agents or editors? Have you written your query letter? Whether you have a final draft or are just thinking about your query, you should check out

Write On Con is hosting three Query Events featuring three different literary agents during the month of April. The first event took place earlier this month. The second event is taking place today. But don’t worry if your query isn’t polish perfect yet. Read through the posts linked below, work on your query, and then participate in the last query event scheduled for April 25th. This event is not a query critique, it is an event for those who are ready to submit. This is an opportunity to get your query in front of editors right away without sitting in the slush pile for months on end.

Don’t be troubled if you struggle with query letters. The skills required to write a query are vastly different than the skills we use to write a novel. In fact we use opposite sides of the brain to perform both of these skills.

Take a little while to read through the posts I’ve included here and you’ll tighten up that query in no time.

Instead of focusing on what can go wrong in a query, the Kill Zone spotlights what you should do in your query. They break the query down into three basic paragraphs discussing what goes into each, in order to be the most effective.

Author Jodi Meadow shares her passion for the query letter with Write On Con. Even though the query is short it is vital to presenting the best introduction to your manuscript. With that in mind, making a good first impression with an agent or editor is your goal. Jodi discusses ways to highlight your strengths and avoid exposing any weaknesses in your writing.

In an article titled, “What Your Query Says About Your Book” author Janice Hardy discusses what a query can reveal about an author and a manuscript, including a weak plot, lack of voice, and editing issues. Learn if you are making these mistakes and how to fix them.

A group of authors and editors at The Blood-Red Pencil aren’t discussing  queries per se on their blog, but they do share what irritates editors the most, starting with obvious mistakes and working through to the infamous “show don’t tell.” These tips, incorporated into a query will positively strengthen your writing and is worth reading.

If you aren’t ready to submit your query but do want to work on it there are sites willing to help you perfect what you’ve got. The Query Shark is one such site, but there are dozens of others. Remember to be patient with your query and give it the time it deserves.


Marquita Hockaday said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Marquita Hockaday said...

Sorry about deleting the first comment...I had some mis-spellings :( Anyway, I participated in the first Write on Con Query Critique event and it was very helpful. That is pretty exciting that the last one gives an opportunity for editors to look at our queries. I'm not ready for that, yet but it seems like it would be a neat experience. Great post!

Pam Harris said...

Thanks for sharing! Holly and myself are also participating in a Query Blogfest--so that writers can give each other feedback. You can go to for the deets. :)

emy shin said...

Thank you so much for all these links, Michelle! Writing queries is really difficult -- and it's great to get directions and advice, especially from industry professionals.

Hannah said...

Very helpful links, thanks Michelle!