Writing Query Letters

Sarah Bowman

Sarah Bowman, attended workshops, writing groups, read & write constantly, novel-in-progress

I cannot directly answer your question but I will provide links below to instructions for writing query letters and to sample query letters. Be aware that there are different kinds of query letters. Some are for publishers and others are for literary agents.

Re literary agents. Because of the great competition in the publishing industry today, it is advisable to use a literary agent in most cases. Literary agents know the business of publishing and how to bargain with publishers and put together a package with international language and movie rights, etc. that is in the best interest of the author. For their work, agents get a small (10–15) percentage of what the publisher pays. Sorry, I forget the money terms but there’s words like royalties and advances. There may be others. The agent gets a percentage for his/her work while the author gets to work on his/her next book instead of worrying about money and rights and all this stuff we’re no good at. Like a literary agent said at a workshop I attended, agents handle the business end so writers can do what they do best: write.

Here are the links. As stated, be aware of the two different kinds of query letters as you read these instructions and samples.


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