Writing A Query: part two

October 15, 2011

If you missed my last submission, back up and read it.


Now, follow my top ten suggestions of what NOT to do when pitching work to an agent. In your query…

Do not use anything but a basic font. Old English scroll might look pretty, but

it won’t get you published.

  1. Do not spell the agent’s name incorrectly
  2. Be professional, and do not begin your letter with “Dear Carrie, What’s up?” Begin, “Dear Ms. Brown-Wolf,”.  Also, don’t call me Mr..
  3. Do not go over one page. As much as you have to say, limit your words in a query.
  4. Do not tell the agent that your kids love the book. Maybe they do, but the agent is looking for a broader audience.
  5. Do not double space. It’s the only place you don’t need to double space.
  6. Do not use a .3 margin or a 3.3 margin. I know you want to get attention, but use your words to do it.
  7. Do not use the wrong date.
  8. Do not use an address or agency name that does not match the agent you’re writing.
  9. Do not forget to end professionally (no begging either).

It’s hard stuff, but you can do it. My next post will present a top ten to-do list and walk you through the madness. But lest I forget, make sure you have someone review your query. Sleep on it. Rewrite it again. And again.


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