Facing the Facts: My First Query Letter Stank

Today, after recieving my first rejection email, it realized something. My query letter did not live up to the quality of the sample “successful query letters” that I read online. It was way too general. Even though my novel is for young adults, I hardly mentioned the kids. And the interesting plot lines didn’t even make it into the query. I was trying to keep it short and sweet. So instead of giving specific details, I gave sweeping generalizations of the book’s plot and even the overall series.

Boy, did I blow it.

Today, however, I hopped back on that literary horse and revised the query significantly. It actually helped me see the real plot-drivers in a different light. The key points that wound up in my final draft were not necessarily the key points I intended to emphasize when I first started writing. But that’s just the way the cookie crumbles, I guess. Writers can plan and sketch and storyboard all they want, but at some point they have to let their characters take the reins. (Sorry…too many horse metaphors).


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