Query Always in Process
I am more than half way through the manic Catch-22 and will report back next blog post. This post will be focused more on the writing, rather than reading aspect of my life. More importantly it is focused on the ever dreaded, ever looming query letter.
For those who do not know, a query letter is a letter sent to a literary agent or publishing house in hopes that they will represent you and your novel. Easy right? Not so much! This letter needs to represent you, your book, and grab the attention of the reader so they want to request your entire manuscript, but it all needs to be done in one page. This means you have to take your 67,000-word, 200-page novel and condense it down to a few paragraphs and hope you entice your prospect enough that they are intrigued and want to read more. Getting a little more daunting, right?
I have never been good at talking about or promoting myself; which as an actress and writer is probably not a good thing. I think that is why the thought of a query letter produces the sweats and heart palpitations. I finished the “final” edits on my book (edits are never really finished) sometime in 2013 and it took me until 2014 to force myself to sit down and write a query. Then without much editing or rewriting, I started to send it out to literary agents, I think I just wanted it to be out of my hands. I will tell you now this is not a great idea. I sent my letter to about 15 agents and heard a “No” from probably two of them and nothing from the rest. Hearing a “No” is better than hearing nothing at all because you know your letter is at least being read and not sitting in a slush pile somewhere being ignored or deleted. I knew I had to do some research and write a whole new letter.
The heart palpitations and procrastination set in once again and I actually did not force myself to write a new letter until just recently in 2015. I wrote and rewrote, sent it out to other people to read to get feedback and think I finally have a pretty nice letter (it is attached below for all to read). I am doing extensive research into literary agents and their current authors to try and find an agency that would be a perfect fit for my book and me, rather than just querying every agency I find. I have received a few “no’s” already but know that is going to happen and will keep trying because someone somewhere will love my novel as much as I do.
All of that being said; if anyone knows of or personally knows a literary agent, word of mouth is always the best way to get things done!
Until the next one…