Saturday, April 19, 2014

Werewolves? There Wolves (Question)

Quick - name that movie!
Welcome to the A to Z challenge!

A to Z Writing advice:
Querying – Similar to blurbs, query letters need to be quick, concise, to the point. Get in and get out and leave em hanging. Wham, bam, I want some more, ma'am! Here's my thoughts on writing queries:

  • try to use only two, or at most three, character names - not too much detail, it's confusing
  • introduce the MC, tell what goes wrong (the twist) why does he absolutely need to fix it? (motivation) and who or what is in his way?
  • and don't forget voice! give a taste with some spice to it!
  • the meat of a query shouldn't be more than two paragraphs, but you could add a hook sentence or two at the beginning - just don't make it too gimmicky or cheesy, and PLEASE do not start with, Mary had the perfect life... until... I have read that at the beginning of so many blurbs and queries... and agents have heard it umpteen times more!
  • which brings me to my last bit of advice - make sure you show them what's original about your story. make it stand out! what's so special about it?!

Visiting BROKEN BRANCH FALLS (MG Fantasy):
sQuirrelwhat the characters call someone who's afraid, instead of chicken (and instead of saying bawk, bawk, they make paws with their hands and mock buck teeth, like a squirrel!)

And for laughs:
Reasons Men are Happier People... 

Q is for Quick
Phone conversations with men are over in 30 seconds flat.

Men can be showered and ready to go in ten minutes or less.


Sophie Duncan said...

Query letters - even harder than writing the damn story in the first place :) Thanks for the advice.
Sophie's Thoughts & Fumbles - A to Z Ghosts
Fantasy Boys XXX - A to Z Drabblerotic

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tara .. quick, simple effective querying .. you should know.

Cheers and Happy Easter - Hilary

Sarah Foster said...

Thanks for the advice. Hopefully I'll be querying soon :)

Fida Islaih said...

Thanks for the quick query tips. I'm working on one and really needed it!

Robin said...

Writing that query... tough tough tough. Writers often don't do concise all that well. In its own way, writing and rewriting that query is excellent practice to implement the least amount of words with the most impact.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Those man facts are very true!
The query should always cover the who-what-why-where-and-when.

Anonymous said...

I liked the men jokes!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

LOL. The men thing today is just the opposite at our house. My husband takes forever to get ready and he talks on the phone much longer and more often than I do.

Carrie-Anne said...

I read a blog post from an agency about how one of their clients managed to hook her agent with a two-page query letter. That's definitely a huge risk that might not've paid off with everyone!

Rebecca M. Douglass said...

Love the man-facts. Though I'm at least as fast as the man in my life, since I never wear make-up and keep my hair long and straight. Easy-peasy. Oh, and I'm a writer. I wear sweats to work, you know? :D

Nana Prah said...

Great advice. Drafting a query letter places first in the line of an author's torture, second comes the blurb.
Nana Prah

A Tarkabarka Hölgy said...

Hey, I can be ready in 10 minutes or less! Mostly because I like sleeping way too much, so I streamline my mornings. My bf takes a lot longer, usually.
The squirrel thing is a funny mental image :)

@TarkabarkaHolgy from
Multicolored Diary - Tales of colors
MopDog - The crazy thing about Hungarians...

randi lee said...

Querying advice that I dearly need! Thank you!!

Anonymous said...

Great advice and LOL on Quick. So true.

Rhonda Albom said...

For the record, when necessary, I can be showered and dressed in 10 minutes. Just not everyday :)

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