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There are some publishers who will accept a direct submission, sometimes even unsolicited submissions, from a writer. Make it personal to the publisher to whom you are contacting.
Form letters might save you a little time, but they also force a writer to be impersonal because it is being addressed to a wide audience. Hook the publisher in the first paragraph.
Many writers use the first paragraph of their query letter to introduce themselves as a writer. Use the introductory paragraph to give the publisher the hook of your book.
Summarize the key points of your plot with character names into sentences so the reader of your query letter will want to know more. Transition from the hook into a synopsis of your book.
This is the point in the query letter where you get to offer some more of the details of your story. It can be quite the challenge to condense your massive novel into one paragraph, so take your time on this section of the letter.
Save the third paragraph of the query letter to discuss your credentials as a writer. If you do offer your credentials, keep this paragraph as short as possible and always make sure it comes back to your skills as a writer.
ALWAYS make sure you offer a word of thanks to whomever is reading your query letter for their time and their consideration. They want to read the whole thing.
Make sure your manuscript is finished, edited, and polished as best as possible before submission.
Check your letter for those nasty little typos. Reading it verbally changes how you access the words in the document, allowing you to judge the flow of your sentences in addition to making sure words are spelled correctly. The issue of a non-fiction query letter. Most query letter advice is geared toward fiction writers.
Writing a query letter to a publisher is something that takes a little time, a little patience, and likely a little luck if it is going to help you get noticed.Learn more about query letter writing in the online course How to Query Letter in 14 Days, from Writer’s Digest University.
Brian A. Klems is the editor of this blog, online editor of Writer’s Digest and author of the popular gift book Oh Boy, You’re Having a Girl: A Dad’s Survival Guide to Raising Daughters.
Use the information on this website to write your query letter so literary agents will read your book. After all, that’s the only thing any talented author needs–the right person at a literary agency and publishing house to actually read their work.
Do adopt the "proper" tone for your query letter. Yes, a query should be a professional business letter, but honestly, writing a query in the same manner as a regular cover letter is a recipe for snoozeville.
A great query should not only tell an agent what your book is about, but it should also match your book's tone. Do not write "your house" or "your publishing program", but the name of that publisher and the name or a description (other authors) that your novels fits in to.
Replace all other placeholders, too (your name, name of editor, your age, your job, your town etc.).
Learn more about query letter writing in the online course How to Query Letter in 14 Days, from Writer’s Digest University. Brian A.
Klems is the editor of this blog, online editor of Writer’s Digest and author of the popular gift book Oh Boy, You’re Having a Girl: A Dad’s Survival Guide to Raising Daughters.
If you read the sample query below, and check out the information sources offered in this article, you will realize there are many different ways to write a successful query letter. Type the Publisher's name and address on the top left.