My reading list grows exponentially. Everytime I read a book, it'll mention three other books I feel I have to read. It's like a particularly relentless series of pop-up ads.
-A.J. Jacobs

Thursday, February 11, 2010

And, Here's What Happens When It Snows And I Have To Be At School

And this year's teacher of the year award goes to...ME! This is about the extent of what the day held yesterday.

Don't you wish I was your 4th grade teacher??

So, I have been working on the evolution of my query letter. I honestly thought it was done, but much to my regret, the one I thought was great, actually sucked. Now, I've scrapped it and restarted. To add to the confusion of my mind that feels like it's spinning and my eyes that are bleeding from looking at the dang thing for so long, I'd love if you'd stop by either forum and give any suggestions. :)

It's posted on Nathan Bransford's forum site, here and on Absolute Write's Query Hell, here.

If you're working on your query letter, I'd suggest, if you haven't already, to go to Elana Johnson. She's posted some excellent resources about your first sentence and last, first paragraph and last, and what to put in the middle. I also bought her book online, and am perusing that to get some ideas.

If the query letter isn't my death, I don't know what will be!! It's hysterical to look back at my original one (that I will not show ANYONE) and see where it has come, but it still has a ton of work.

What resources have you used to write your query? How many times have you re-written it? Will I survive query hell???

9 brilliant remarks:

Shelley Sly said...

Thank you for the links to Elana Johnson's resources.

Query letters can be so exhausting and stressful. And for some reason, there's fear of humiliation attached to them, at least for me. Not sure why.

The first draft of my first QL was terrible. I joined a writing forum and had the people there rip it a apart, which was for the better. I ended up with two partial requests from that letter.

Now I've written a new book, which means new query letter. I wrote the first draft and sent it to a friend of a friend, who is a published author, to be the initial judge. Still waiting to read her critique, and if I still feel like it needs work after that (not that I don't trust her, but I'm hard on myself), I might submit to the Public Query Slushpile.

You WILL survive query hell! It sucks, but you'll make it through.

Shelley Sly said...

Edit: *rip it apart

I hate typos.

Christi Goddard said...

Aw, I sorry. I didn't mean to make you question yourself. I was just trying to be helpful. Just shoot me. This is Texas, after all. You can get away with it here.

Kimberly Franklin said...

Query writing sucks. Not that I know from personal experience, but I've been helping a friend out with hers and, well, they just suck. Who knew writing a query would be harder than writing a book? I do not look forward to that. At all!

Good Luck!

Tina Lynn said...

Not there yet, and I'm so glad I'm not.

Melissa said...

You know, when it snows here the schools shut down. Even if it's just an inch on the roads. I remember the last time it snowed here (about 8 years ago) and I was still teaching. I was just as excited as my students because I knew we would get to go home early.

Well, I can't help about the query yet. Still in first draft mode:)

Diana Paz said...

Yes, you will survive :) It's exciting! I haven't read your query, but I think-- because you believe your query sucks-- you must be on the right track :)

You are my DREAM 4th grade teacher!

Scobberlotcher said...

Ha! You sound like a great 4th grade teacher.

I've been in query hell before many times. I think the best tool is to get someone who has never read your query to read it and see if they get it, if they are interested. I've gotten great feedback that way. Also, don't be afraid to break the rules. After I queried unsuccessfully for months, I turned my query upside down, broke all the rules and sent it out. I received an astounding number of requests for full ms. reads after I did that. So keep going.

Always great to meet another Texan, writer mama! I have two girls. :) Are you attending the DFW Writers' Conf. in April? Maybe I'll see you there.

Haddock said...

some competition !!