I hope that someday, when I land a literary agent (and then a publishing contract), I can share with you the magical query letter which sealed the deal.
Until then, I can’t tell you if I’m doing things right, but I know five others who can! Before I started writing my novel’s query letter, I conducted plenty of research on WHAT literary agents look for in a solid pitch. I asked myself:
- Which queries generate interest, and why?
- Is there a certain format that works?
- What information should I exclude?
To answer those questions, I read a lot. But specifically, here are 5 literary agents (or agencies) who helped me the most. They either blog about the query writing process, or post general advice on their websites:
1) Rachelle Gardner: literary agent, Books & Such
2) The Knight Agency: A Literary Agency
- Writing a Solid Query Letter: http://knightagency.net/manuscript_submissions/writing-a-solid-query-letter/
3) Janet Reid, Literary Agent
4) BookEnds Literary Agency
5) Query Shark (read edited query letters from agent, Janet Reid)
And although this isn’t from a literary agency, Writer’s Digest published an awesome list of successful query letters which landed agents: http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/successful-queries.
So if you’re hoping to be the next Gillian Flynn or James Dashner, I hope this list helps you!
Shari Lopatin is a professional writer, editor, and social media strategist who lives in Phoenix, Ariz. She recently finished her first novel and blogs about the lessons she learns while finding a literary agent, among other topics. Want to follow Shari’s progress toward a book deal? Then join The Readers Club! Sign up here.