Query Letters 101

Recently, I wrote my query letter for Rise of the Phoenix. I had reduced the story into four full sentences. I was so proud of myself! I really thought it was the best query letter I’d ever written.

WRONG.

I sent it out for critique. Drab. Boring. Doesn’t tell what the book is about. Those were the comments.

It was a good reality check for me and knocked me off that pedestal. Cuz, you know, I was thinking I was so bad-ass with my query. So I read it again, along with the comments.

And I thought… CRAP. They’re right.

I posted a message on one of the loops I’m on about query letters and where I could get some pointers – like a book or something. A few folks were kind enough to email me and offer up some help. One of the ladies sent me some really good information on query letters. She even gave me a really cool opening line (thank you, Edie!).

I got to thinking about it and it was like the light bulb went on. Well – OF COURSE – it’s like writing a blurb for one of the ebooks! That’s how I approached it in the rewrite. And then it was so much easier. And it popped and was snappy and matched the voice of the book. It’s much better now. I’m very happy with it.

Man ordered a book for me on query letters, though, from Writer’s Digest. Can’t hurt to read it. Ultimately I think the best thing you can do for your query letters is let other writers read it. Especially other writers who have been there, done that, got the jacket. Maybe this letter will get some bites. Here’s hoping!

But first… so much to do! Last night was soccer practice so I took my book with me and read until it was too dark to read. Then we hit Sonic on the way home (that really ruined my Lean Cuisine and salad I had for lunch but oh well. At least I didn’t have to cook), did homework, did bath, and got him in bed.

I write a blog post for Sole Struck Fashions due on Monday. And then I got down to busy on the edits for Take Me I’m Yours. By that time, exhaustion had set it but I soldiered on. I finished off the second round and fired them off.

I did finish six of my contest entries. Four of them wouldn’t open so I have to wait for the coordinator to get them to me again. I plan to knock those out super fast, too. I keep chanting in my head that I will never over-extend myself again. (Uh huh…we’ll see how that goes…)

Thank goodness it’s Friday. I have no idea what the weekend is going to bring, other than a soccer game.

Happy weekend!

By Michelle

I wish you all could be inside my head. The conversation is sparkling.