S.R.Claridge writes Mystery and Romantic Suspense novels. Her work has been said to have the energy of Dan Brown, the mystery of Mary Higgins Clark and the humor of Janet Evanovich. Claridge novels will take you to the edge of your seat, keep you guessing until the very end and ultimately warm your heart. It is on the pages of every S.R.Claridge novel that Mystery and Sensual Suspense collide.

For more information on bookings, interviews and upcoming releases, please visit the author website and Facebook fan page.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Don't Be Leary of a Query

We've all heard the expression, "you don't get a second chance to make a first impression" and that could not be more true than it is in the writing industry. Your query letter can make it or break it for you. It is not only the first impression an Agent or Publisher receives of your work, it is the ONLY shot you have to make them want to read more. Your query letter is vital to your success as a published author.

The query serves two purposes: it tells the editor what you have to offer and asks if they are interested in seeing it. The query is your only chance to hook the editor on your novel, so take your time to write it well. If the editor finds your query compelling enough, he or she will request a synopsis, sample pages or the entire manuscript for further review.

Your goal in writing the query is not to brag on yourself, nor to negotiate contract terms... it is to HOOK your reader and make them want more. Though your query should be unique, and display your own style, there are some qualities every good query letter must contain:

* A "grabber" or hook sentence that makes the reader want to get her hands on the entire manuscript.

* One to three short paragraphs about your novel.

* A query letter should never exceed one typed page (formatted according to manuscript requirements of 1"margins, times new roman font, 10pt or 12pt)

* A brief paragraph about you and your publishing credentials.

* Why you're soliciting this Agent or Publisher as opposed to another.

* The length in word count of your novel.

* A sentence about your intended audience and/or a comparison to an author with a similar style.

* Include a SASE for all snail mail inquiries (otherwise you will not hear back from them)

Agents and Publishers are inundated with queries. More times than not, query letters don't make it beyond the desk of the publishing or agent assistant ... unless they are impressed. So take your time and write a query that counts.

Don't be leary of writing a query.... you CAN do it!!

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