Query letter sample below reveals how you can double your chances of getting the attention of book agents and publishers. Before i share the ideal structure for book queries with you, i need to make sure you understand something. How to write a killer query letter for selfhelp and howto. Most literary agents will not even consider a query letter with more than one page or front and back. Just before we look at it, i should say that i am a real author describing a real book this letter pretends th. Query letter basics a query letter is a single page cover letter, introducing you and your book. Near the bottom of each query youll find a link to the authors website and a link to buy the book the query is for. How to write a query letter in 7 steps the reedsy blog. To help inspire you, weve collected 116 examples of successful query letters from famous authors spanning various genres, from crime fiction, to fantasy, to young adult. A query is a business letter asking permission to send the project described. Mar 05, 2008 in the freelance writing industry, the term query letter can be used to refer to a letter that is pitching a nonfiction article to an editor at a news magazine or other periodical. Sample query letter nonfiction authors association.
To write a killer query, you need a onepage letter with three basic sections or paragraphs. Nonfiction is often sold on the basis of a proposal. One big difference between query letters for fiction and nonfiction is that with nonfiction, youre hoping to get the agent to ask for your proposal and sample chapters rather than a full manuscript while in the past, nonfiction books were accepted based on the proposal and sample chapters, many nonfiction genresespecially memoirnow. The query letter is so much of a sales piece that its quite possible to write one without having written a word of the manuscript. This is the perfect query letter for picture book formula. Imagine my delighted surprise when the category you got up to present best gay memoirbiography was the one in which my book, oneman show. Sample query letter actual letter that landed a book deal hi name of person, i would love to speak with you about my new book kick start your success and its ability to become a market phenomenon. No need to write an elaborate picture book query letter. Writers use these letters to pitch their ideas to editors and publishers. How not to write a darn good query letter dont go beyond one page. That said, if you break down the perfect nonfiction query letter into its component parts, youll be able to understand what worksand what doesnt work. Mar 10, 2009 nonfiction query sample regular blog readers probably remember the queries i posted in january and if you missed them, check them out. Dear mitchell, we met last monday evening at the lammys.
Query letter examples where can you find the best sample query or query letter template to help you write your pitch. Once you find an agent you would like to represent your book, the pitch letter is the next step in the traditional. Get an agent interested before you write the proposal. If i were writing an imaginary nonfiction query example, it would go like the following. So heres a sample query letter i did for a non fiction book idea brought to me by a new author. Once you find an agent you would like to represent your book, the pitch. Nov 30, 2006 i originally posted this example of a good query letter back when i was a literary agent, and the lessons still apply today. If youre writing a memoir or narrative nonfiction, research what topics agents and editors tire of seeing. After all, if you dont send out a query, that story is never going to see the light of day. Actually, its rude to go over one page in a query letter, not to mention unprofessional. How to write a cover letter andor a query letter for submission. Find out who is publishing the majority of books in your. Agent query letters that actually worked for nonfiction.
Agent query letters that actually worked for nonfiction galleycat. Sub it club query master heather burnell recently used the framework the hook, the book, and the cook for fiction queries. Review this post from writers digest on how to write a successful query letter for any genre. My novel, saving grace 105,000 words, is a multifaceted story of love, turmoil, and perseverance in which two people give up everything, including each other, for their love and for their child. I hope these samples take some of the fear and doubt away so you can get that letter finished and put your best foot forward. How to write a query letter that gets manuscript requests. If youre not getting agent responses to your current query letter, try this approach. How not to write a darn good query letterdont go beyond one page. But in the book publishing industry, query letter describes letters that are sent to pitch books to literary agents. Let us all learn from emily conrad, who was both gracious enough to send me a good query letter and generous enough to let me use her as a guinea pig. This article is part of a series called get a literary agent. Publishing agents have to write query letters, too.
You can write a killer query letter in three stepsby composing a hook, a pitch, and a bio. Every aspiring writer needs to master the art of the query letter, and know the difference between it and the easiertowrite cover letter. The query letter that literary agents love to read godly. Example of a good nonfiction query letter nathan bransford editing. Let us guide you through the query letter writing process. These links will help you lay the foundation for your nonfiction query letter. Sample query letter the query letter sample below will help you create a successful query letter of your own, so you can get a top literary agent, publisher, and book deal. May 11, 2017 this is the letter hannah used to hook her agent. You can search online and view samples of different kinds of query letters to guide you in writing the best query letter for nonfiction magazine writing. Like writing in general, when it comes to writing a query letter, the more you write, the easier it gets. Mar 21, 2016 one of the easiest ways to learn what makes a good, standard query letter is simply to see an example of one that does its job well.
A query letter is a way of introducing your writing to editors or literary agents and publishers. Query letter sample literary agents and literary agencies. Not everyone will have just met the agent they are querying, but its still good to add a personal touch. Sell a nonfiction article by writing a winning query letter.
Dearest mary, ive enjoyed reading your kidlit blog and just found an article on how to write a nonfiction query. The timehonored method is to look at the acknowledgments page of books similar to yours that you admire. Wow children book publishers with perfect query letters. How to write a nonfiction query letter for childrens books. Of course the letter will sound clunky and artificial at first, but youll be able to smooth it out. Are you struggling to write a nonfiction query letter to literary agents. If you write fiction or narrative nonfiction, a query letter is your first and often, your only chance to get an agent interested in reading and, with hope, signing your work.
Thus, tackle writing your query letter in three steps. How to write the perfect query letter query letter example. But if youre writing nonfiction, this is query letter 101. We met most recently at your seminar, pitches and queries at the ccwc in hyannis, which was instrumental in helping to craft this query letter. If youre hoping to secure a traditional publisher for your next great american. Since they were all for fiction, one of my readers made a special request to include a nonfiction query, so here it is, a query by cynthia shapiro.
Sep 23, 2011 personally, i learn the best by example. So let me dissect this really good query letter and extoll its virtues. All it requires is a firm grasp of your story premise. Nonfiction query basics part 1 picture books sub it club. It is either sent without an accompanying manuscript, or with two or three sample chapters the publishers guidelines will state which form the query should take. So write a professional, intelligent, concise, intriguing query and not only will you entice an agent to ask for more, but youll move yourself one step closer to a book sale. Were waiting for the results on this, but i think the letter is pretty good. I want some feedback, so dont be shy about making comments. Ive seen a lot of query letters that worked this way.
How to write a nonfiction query letter eschler editing. Writing a query letter for a nonfiction book can be challenging because, unlike when youre querying fiction, theres no triedandtrue formula for writing a nonfiction query letter. A cover letter is what you write after an editor has read your query letter, sample chapters and synopsis. Kole, 1 according to your agencys website youre actively seeking middlegrade fiction, so im pleased to introduce my novel, a smidgen of sky. How to write a darn good query letter ny book editors. And please keep in mind that this is a quick brainstorm, but it demonstrates the basic points i made above. A query letter for a nonfiction book isnt all that different from a fiction query. Every agent will have different pet peeves, different priorities, and different interests, but most likely every single agent who received this query was compelled to move on to at least read gia cribbss first chapters, which, by the way you can do right now in any book store or online to see why gia had so much immediate. The life and art of bernard perlin, was a finalist. The letter you send to an agent to get him to request your book proposal is a query letter.
Just present the main characters, the main problem, and the resolution, then work in a hook great friendship hook, above, and sign off like you normally would with a novel query. Jan 17, 2020 the query letter has one purpose, and one purpose only. How to write a query letter for nonfiction tck publishing. Get an agent interested before you write the proposal october 7, 2017 by lynette padwa lots of firsttime nonfiction authors are thrilled to learn they dont have to write an entire manuscript to acquire an agent and hopefully a publisher they just have to write a book proposal. Whether youre writing a fiction novel or nonfiction book, youre going to need to know how to write a query letter. Jun 25, 2019 the following is an actual query letter that helped author romanus wolter sell his manuscript to wiley publishing. Its part of our free 15part guidelines on how to write a query letter by mark malatesta, a former literary agent and former marketing. On the road to traditional publication, your query letter plays a central role in getting literary agents and publishers to notice your book. The author will thank his or her agent, and then you have the name of the person and something in common your high regard for that author. The query letter that literary agents love to read if youve written a book, are currently writing a book, or are even remotely interested in writing a book, then one of the things youll soon need to consider is how to tackle a query letter. A query letter is meant to elicit an invitation to send sample chapters or even the whole manuscript to the agent. The following is an excerpt from write a book without lifting a finger by mahesh grossman, available at. Example of a good query letter nathan bransford writing. After all, a query letter is a way to make connections with agents and editors and garner interest in your work.
With loads of hints and tips on how to get your letter right you want to know what a great query letter to literary agents should look like. If the query letter stands alone, its your only chance to sell the editor on your book. I created this book to compel people to take the right action for their successnow. Read elizabeth lyons book on writing nonfiction book proposals. Take a look at this list of query letter examples that worked. In a single page, the writer aims to make the editorpublisher get interested in reading or publishing the entire story. Jan 05, 2016 a query letter for a nonfiction book isnt all that different from a fiction query.74 761 1330 900 1370 979 665 381 873 364 847 1388 358 819 517 172 848 1443 1366 942 1001 1030 1306 1439 585 688 386 1179 721 871 434 556 363 1099 98 512 121