The Query I Wish I Could Send Out

Dear SuperAgent,

I wrote my first novel, Twenty-Five, a year ago, on the verge of my own twenty-fifth birthday to deal with the trauma of that milestone.  It is the first time I’ve attempted to write fiction other than a contest in the fourth grade (which I won) where I wrote a short story entitled The Summer Aliens Invaded My Brother’s Brain.  I know my strengths and I know my weaknesses.  Twenty-Five is a love story, pure and simple.  The characters are not so utterly unique that reading about them makes one wonder if I was on acid when imagining their personalities.  The plot is not so action packed and full of twists and turns that readers will sit looking at the wall, scratching their heads, for ten minutes after reading because they have no idea what the hell just happened.  Instead, I’ve created characters who are a lot like you and me, your best friend, your next door neighbor, and the boy who grew up down the street from you who you always had a secret crush on.  What happens to them is what happens to us all- the firsts of a new relationship.  The first meeting, the first date, the first kiss, the first fight, the big breakup, etc.

I realize this doesn’t sound glamorous or jump-out-of-your-seat fantastic, but it’s one of those books that will make you feel good.  Reading it, you’ll be reminded how hard it was to summon up the courage to ask that girl out or say I love you.  You’ll remember those nights you spent heart-broken and crying because nothing in the world seemed more disastrous than the person you love leaving you.

I wrote Twenty-Five with the hope of penning a story that would inspire in others the same feelings of romance and hope that Jane Austen’s work inspired in me.

Twenty-Five isn’t a rewrite of an Austen classic and it doesn’t feature any characters named Mr. Darcy, but it does show a strong woman who doesn’t believe in her own strength and a beautiful man who would do anything to make her see how amazing she is.

When Abigail Bronsen turns twenty-five, she wonders why her life has gone nowhere.  She’s trapped in a job she hates and spends her evenings alone in her apartment, with nothing but her literary heroes and writing aspirations to keep her company.  Then Ben Harris crashes into her.

They fall in love, of course, and Ben secretly helps Abigail cross off items on a list of goals she made as a teenager.  He finds out soon though, that helping build her confidence is sending her on a path away from him, one that leads to London and a dream job.

With an ocean between them, they’ll struggle to overcome pain and pride to see if their love is meant to be, or if it was all simply the result of a random accident.

Now doesn’t that sound amazing?  Please read my book!

Sincerely,

A Writer Who Will Be Eternally Grateful if You Give Me a Chance!

18 thoughts on “The Query I Wish I Could Send Out

  1. I find it ironic that as writers we can write a 90-100.000 words long novel but when it comes to that one-piece-of-paper-long query letters, we’re stuck! I find them dreadful to say the least and don’t even want to imagine the day I’ll have to write one of them but I’m afraid that day is approaching…
    If only we could write something like your letter, what we truly wish to say and the way we wish to say it… 🙂

    1. part of me wants to send this completely unacceptable, breaking all the rules query and just see if I get any responses at all!

      I hate query writing. I’ve got like 20 different drafts of my query letter and just can’t seem to get it right. i think my concept is too unoriginal, which of course does not serve me well in the manuscript either, but what can I say, I’m a simple girl?

  2. Great query! I think it would work wonders if you just cut the beginning a little and move faster to the paras describing the plot…Just my opinion, naturally…I could be wrong!

    1. Haha, Claude, I know this query is not at all what agents want. It breaks all the rules. It’s just if I could speak to an agent about my writing, this is what I would want to say.

  3. I tried to get back to you via ‘Next Big Writer’ but there were inumerable glitches. Please accept my apologies; and I wish this was on ‘The Next Big Writer’ So feel free to cut and paste if possible.

    I read your work as though it was page one. I thought I was reading the begining of your story as this was my first day on the site. Now I realize I was reading Chapter five. Well no wonder it seemed fragmented and disjointed; and I’ll bet the detail was in the previous chapters.

    You still need to work on proof reading: as we all do. there is always somethiong. Write from the heart and it will serve you well:)
    I will continue to follow your work. Write on!

    Jackson James

    1. Jackson- did you try the forums? I feel bad you couldn’t get in touch with me, but I’m glad you found me here. Here’s a link to the Writing Feedback Cont. Forum: http://www.thenextbigwriter.com/forum/viewforum.php?id=8
      It’s a great place to continue discussions started in reviews.

      I can certainly understand how starting on chapter five would be jilting if you thought it was chapter one! I’m glad you went back, but don’t hesitate to let me know if there are still places that feel stilted or in need of more detail.

      I have to say, I think I’m past the stage of proofreading- I’m in hard-core editing stage! But I know what you mean, there are definitely always places to be improved. And never worry- Twenty-Five is completely from the heart.

      Thanks again for reading! I really appreciate anyone who takes the time to read my silly little book.

      ~Rachel

  4. Isn’t it great to finally write one query that you don’t have to second-guess or be told to rip apart? How freeing…indeed, if only you could send it, but hopefully expressing it alone provides some benefit!
    🙂

    1. Tips? Unfortunately, I think the first novel I wrote was a fluke. I haven’t been able to finish another and I’ve started like 6 or 7! I think the only tip I can give is to not care whether it is good or not, write it anyways.

  5. If you opened the letter with the phrase “Query writing sucks and I don’t feel like I’m very good at it. So, I’m just going to tell you about my story from the heart.” And then jump right on to your first paragraph I think you have a winner. As for breaking the rules, it’s informative, talks about the characters, places them in the readership perspective and discusses the narrative of the story.

    In the grand scheme of queries, this is SO not in the bottom percentage or a travesty of rule-breaking. I think this one might surprise you.

    Personally, I say pick an agent from “the list” you (like all of us) have and give it a whirl. It can’t get any worse than a “no thank you” which is really all we get to hope for anyway.

    1. I might take your advice, BadPants. Query writing is so damn stressful it makes me too afraid to actually send the letter out! But this is my book, like it or not, follow the rules of a good query or not. I should just take the plunge. It’s not really that I’m afraid of rejection, I mean I am, but that’s not what is really stopping me from sending the query out. I’m a perfectionist and I don’t want to send a letter out that isn’t absolutely perfect and is definitely going to get rejected and therefore no one will ever read my book- does that make sense? I don’t want to send a query out that isn’t going to get ANY requests for more, because then it feels pointless. I’m more afraid of the book being rejected than the query, but if the query gets rejected, then the book has no chance, you know what I mean? It’s so convoluted and f***ed up.

  6. I know I’m late to the party, but I say take the risk! Parents always tell their kids that “no” never killed anyone. So, why not?

    Really, Rachel, it sounds like you’re having a bit of a control issue with the query letter. Sometimes though, you have to just jump in with both feet and take the chance. Waiting on “perfect” isn’t getting you anywhere.

    1. I just can’t stand the thought that I’m going to send a crappy query to the right agent for me and they don’t like my query and so I’ve lost my shot with that agent!

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