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Thread: Query help!

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011

    Query help!

    Hey all,

    I'm new here, but I've been lurking for awhile (sorry, I'm one of those shy people). My name's Carrie. I've seen some great advice on queries and thought I'd seek some help. Thanks in advance to anyone willing to take a look! Here goes:

    Dear Mr. or Ms. ____,

    Like most sixteen-year-old boys, Nathan Terras thinks a lot about girls and not so much about the nature of good and evil--until a near-death experience reveals he's to become the Antichrist.

    Forget vampires, werewolves, and zombies. They're the lucky ones.


    Nathan would love to wake from this nasty nightmare, except it's his enemies who are waking. They're coming for him, and they're not interested in a friendly game of Halo. They can be anyone--his classmates, friends, even his own family.

    Nathan, along with his English teacher and two best friends, must navigate his transformation without getting killed. But Nathan carries a dark secret. A violent power grows inside him. He canít control it, and worse than thatópart of him starts to like it.

    Nathan doesnít want to be a monster, but when his little brother disappears, heíll do anything to find him. If he embraces his destiny, he may win the lives of those he loves. But what will he lose? The line between good and evil blurs, leaving Nathan wondering which side heís supposed to be on.

    THE BECOMING is a young adult paranormal novel of about 78,000 words. The manuscript is available at your request. Thank you for your time and consideration.

    (I started out with the title ANTICHRIST 16: THE BECOMING, but thought it might frighten some agents off. Then I tried DEVIL'S SON: THE BECOMING, but that's morphed into just THE BECOMING. Yeah, I like to second guess myself.)

    Anyway, go ahead and hurt me. I can take it.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lea Zalas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Southern Georgia
    Carrie, it's actually not bad. I really think you can take out the paragraph that starts with, "Nathan, along with his English...." and it wouldn't hurt your query at all since it says the same thing as the previous paragraph. It's okay to tell the agent who took his little brother and why.

    Is his transformation physical, metaphysical, or mental? Just saying transformation, is very vague.

    Don't ever ask questions in your query - "But what will he lose?" The agent doesn't have the answer and according to a lot of them, it's a big turnoff in a query.

    Don't say "of about 78,000 words", say whatever the word count really is, rounded up to the next highest thousand (i.e. 77,655 words would be 78,000 words). Don't say the manuscript is available. Because if it isn't, you shouldn't be querying yet.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Avonne Writer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Southern California, USA

    Carrie- I'm hooked. I'd really read this if I saw this as a book cover.

    The Q is a little wordy, like Lea said, remove or rephrase that one graph. Other than the other tiny nitpicks, good job!!


    I especially like: THE. ANTICHRIST. Set apart like you did it. You get it, it's like, Holy Hell! THE. ANTICHRIST.
    Last edited by Avonne Writer; 10-13-2011 at 10:21 PM.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Thank you, thank you!
    Lea: Those are all excellent points--some of which I should know better--duh, me. I'm making changes immediately.

    Avonne: I appreciate the enthusiasm. Yeah, when I wrote this, I thought, man, what a good hook. But I haven't got as much positive response as I would've liked. (Although I've only queried 13 agents so far with one request for a full.) I'm hoping it's more my query letter and not, you know, my idea (cringe).

    Thanks again!

  5. #5
    Senior Member C Bets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    I, too, like THE. ANTICHRIST part. How can you beat that?

    I agree that referencing his English teacher and friends aren't necessary in this. And, is the power you mention his "dark secret?" If not, what is? Also, "...part of him starts to like it." isn't working for me. I know what you're going for, but the wording doesn't have the same impact as something else might. For example: "He can't control the violent power that continues to grow inside him, but the more he experiences its dominance, the more he doesn't want to." Or, whatever you can come up with.

    Last, "... he may win the lives of those he loves." Not sure I understand what this means. I think you can come up with something else and clear this up.

    Good start! And, good luck!

    And be at peace... the universe is unfolding as it should

  6. #6
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Firstly u can site with him and talk about that what is the exact problem what is happning with you. Is there is any problem then he can tell you.


  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Firstly u can site with him and talk about that what is the exact problem what is happning with you. Is there is any problem then he can tell you.

    Carrie, I agree with the previous comments. Very intriguing!

  8. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    I second Jena's "What?"

    I think you have a hook, Carrie, and also agree with the above. Good luck.

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