[tweetmeme source=”breeogden” only_single=false]Recently, I’ve had requests to give examples of BAD query letters. But you’ll forgive me if I just don’t feel comfortable critiquing some poor unsuspecting writer’s query and posting it live. (Maybe someday) However, Martin Literary Management (mainly Sharlene because nonfiction lends itself to WAY crazier queries) will soon be featuring a “Crazy Query” section (anonymous, of course) on our site, so keep checking back for that. Other’s missteps are your golden ticket.
In the meantime, you can read the Writer’s Digest article that Sharlene wrote featuring crazy queries (posted below), or you can buy her book, co-authored by Anthony Flacco, entitled Publish Your Nonfiction Book, which tells you exactly what to do and what not to do in a query letter.
But as for me, I can tell you I don’t appreciate being called “sir” or just plain “literary agent.” Another mistake often made in queries I receive is that the description of the manuscript is far too vague. Agents don’t have the extra time to write you and ask you to tell them more about your book because you only gave them a few sentences and then asked “Are you interested?”
This, however, is no invitation to write out every detail of your manuscript. It is definitely a fine line which means you should revise and revise your query letter like you do your manuscript. In your query letter, you’ll want to get down to brass tacks and give the crucial elements of the book but also leave a little intrigue.
Anyway, enough of me…check out this article by Sharlene. It’s awesome.
Remember, I’m always available to answer questions. Click on the book widget in the top right hand corner–>