Query writing started for me a long time before I started pitching novels. We had long boring courses on it in journalism school. And no matter how I worked at it, mine were always lacking. Ultimately it was the query writing, the pitching, the selling of my ideas that deterred me from fully pursuing a freelance writing career.
While I moved onto a full time graphic design career, I never stopped writing stories. I enjoyed writing articles but I loved writing fiction and a career as an author was always the dream. So, as manuscripts began to build up, I turned again to my old nemesis, the query letter. And I was still lacking.
I’ve never learned how to sell myself and, even when I had absolute faith in my work, I always held back, wanting it to speak for itself. Unfortunately, a the purpose of a query is to speak for your work. My personality flaws needed to be overcome.
So what makes a good query? Unfortunately, I’m still trying to work that one out. I’m an over sharer and a under seller. I’m an introverted performer. None of this makes for a good pitch. I’m pretty sure “Dear Agent, Please check out my work. Or don’t, you know. it’s cool” doesn’t make for a good sell.
One of the reasons I am self publishing is because I was burnt out on selling myself. I wanted to get my work out there so that I had something to back up my wild claims of brilliance when I’m ready to start looking at traditional publishing again. But today I got a request for a query. So its time to hit up the internet and start reading articles on how to craft the perfect query.
Anyone have any wisdom to share?