Monday, August 9, 2010

Through the Opera Glasses - 66 - How a Killer Query Letter Can Sell Your NaNoWriMo Story

If you're like me, you've given up several Novembers to the writing marathon known as NaNoWriMo.

So far, I'm currently finishing the second draft of the first NaNo story I developed a few years ago. I've also got about a third of another story from an aborted NaNo.

I'm already looking forward to this year's marathon - something I couldn't see putting myself through again, after my first ordeal. But something happened during these past few years. The thrill of the finish is a remarkable feeling on many levels. I've experienced it twice so far.

Even the unfinished attempt gave me the beginning of another novel - in fact, my Weekend Writer's Retreat is currently exploring the backstory of that one.

My friend Amy Ruttan knows an even greater thrill when it comes to the NaNo story she wrote last year.

She just sold it to Samhain Publishing under the name A.C. Ruttan!

Amy has very kindly agreed to share her killer query letter which sold her NaNo novel. If you've got a story kicking around, and are willing to put your blood, sweat and sanity into doing NaNoWriMo this November, just imagine what can emerge on the other side of that finish line.


Amy's Killer Query Letter

Dear Secret Agent and or editor [Of course here you would address the person your query is directed to]:

I am pleased to submit for your consideration my complete 80,000 word Urban Fantasy INCARNATE.

When those who protect us from the Apocalypse are being murdered there is only one Incarnate left with the balls to keep mankind from being sucked into hell—too bad she doesn’t really have balls. Cia doesn’t mind banishment in the Canadian Arctic, what does bother her is someone is bumping off fellow Incarnates, and she’s the next target. She’s already died once before and she’s not about to let that happen again. Especially, since the killer is apparently her estranged husband, Arthur who hasn’t spoken to her in a decade since she killed his brother.

To prove Arthur’s innocence and earn back his love she needs to find the real murderer before the Wrath consumes him. Although that’s going to be tricky given the entire world seems to be going to hell in a hand basket and her past life continues to haunt her on every turn of the ice road.

She has thirty days to find the killer before Hell breaks loose—literally

I am a member of the ____ [NAME ORGANIZATIONS HERE]. Under the name Amy Ruttan I am published with ___ [NAME PUBLISHERS HERE].

I would be happy to forward the complete manuscript at your request.

Thank you for your time and consideration.


[Your legal name here]

Julianne MacLean says Great query! Congrats on the sale to Samhain, Amy!

Amy Ruttan says Thanks Julianne! Query letters were always so difficult for me. A great help was Query Ninja and her book. Best ebook on writing selling queries ever!

Travis Cody says Well now I want to read that book!


Julianne MacLean said...

Great query! Thanks for sharing Amy, and great post as usual, Julia. Congrats on the sale to Samhain, Amy!

Amy said...

Thanks Julianne! I was thrilled that story sold, it was the fastest I ever completed NaNo! The story just forced itself out of me. LOL!

And I feel honored Julia asked to feature my query letter! Query letters were always so difficult for me. A great help was Query Ninja and her book. Best ebook on writing selling queries ever! It helped break down my blurb.

Nessa said...

Congratulations Amy on selling your book. And that is a great query.

Amy said...

Thanks Nessa! :)

Travis Cody said...

Well now I want to read that book!

Amy said...

Summer 2011 Travis. :)

Kelly Boyce said...

Way to go, Amy! Maybe I'll get her to write all my query letters. She could hire herself out! :)

Amy said...

Thanks Kelly.Hmmmm. *taps chin* LOL!