Saturday, January 2, 2010

#139

Book title: Force of Nature
Query word count: 2,059
Book word count: 111,866 (fiction, young adult, complete)
(name redacted)
(address redacted)
(city, state zip redacted)
(phone number redacted)
(email redacted)


Hello Janet/Query Shark:

If this reaches your eyes, thank you. I’ve appreciated all the comments I’ve read about the work you’ve posted thus far. You offer an amazing service to new writers – even if you never review their creations.

I’d like to publish my novel, and have enclosed a synopsis and a query here for your review. Your comments would be greatly appreciated for the re-write process.

Thank you for your time and consideration.




Synopsis, written by one of the characters:
(redacted)

Query (earlier in the book):
(pages redacted)

(End of query)

I’d be thrilled if you would read more of the book.


I'm not sure whether to laugh or cry here.

This isn't a query. This isn't close to a query.
Look at it.
It's a list of information about the book, including godhelpus the word count for the query. That's so far beyond useless information I just want to smack you with all previous 138 entries to the Query Shark and shriek, "DID YOU SEE THAT IN ANY OF THESE" particularly in the ones I said were good? No, no you didn't.

So, let's start out the new year with a refresher.

1. Don't put your contact information at the top of an electronic query. Put it at the bottom, under your name. If you're including pages in the real query to real agents, put your contact info below your name and BEFORE the pages.

2. A query is not a synopsis.

3. A query is not pages from the book.

Start over. Read the archives to see what works and what doesn't.

11 comments:

Josin L. McQuein said...

A 2,000 word query? :-O That's a whole chapter.

I think I'd like to try and train my characters to write the synopsis for me - I hate that part.

Brittany said...

Is it just my opinion that 111,000 words is a little long for young adult fiction?

JS said...

Is it just my opinion that 111,000 words is a little long for young adult fiction?

No, you're right.

But 2,000 words is almost ten times too long for a query, so they did better with the novel's word count.

Southern Writer said...

If this reaches your eyes, thank you. I’ve appreciated all the comments I’ve read about the work you’ve posted thus far.

I liked this part.

rachelcapps said...

Disappointing.

Don't give up in frustration QS, there are those of us who do try and learn from the previous 138 entries.

Basil Zyllion said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Basil Zyllion said...

I feel your pain QS. I had to delete the last entry for fear of hurting this poor writer's feelings.

Blee Bonn said...

I just want to encourage you to retry. Don't give up! There is a lot of great info on this site.

You are braver than me. I'm not sure I could submit to the query shark, even though part of me wants to. :)

Regroup, find a critique group/partner and go at it again - just don't let it get you down.

Tough critiques are part of the process and only make you stronger.

Aimless Writer said...

I get the feeling the writer was very young and motivated.

Welcome back Query Shark!!! We missed you.

kanishk said...

, there are those of us who do try and learn from the previous 138 entries.

Work from home India

Lanette said...

Yea! Query shark is back. Your loyal fans have missed you.

I would hug you, but cuddling up to a shark may be the last thing I ever do.