Tag Archives: Queries

Toolbox 14: Query Revamping

This post was written for the Author Toolbox Blog Hop where we share our new discoveries on the craft of writing, editing, querying, marketing, publishing, and blogging tips. Posted every third Wednesday of the month. For rules and sign-up click here.


Last post I shared that I submitted to ten agents since then I’ve received eight rejections. All form letters confirmed in QueryTracker.

A quick visit to  Query Shark, some heavy reading and I went into revamp mode.

I reworked my query, synopsis, and sample chapters.  I didn’t have to redo all of it. Form letters usually mean the reader didn’t get past the query letter, but once I started fixing things…

What i focused on when revamping

What’s the hook? Many of the example letters started off with a general book description. I didn’t make this mistake. I’m pretty sure I was too vague. She strongly suggests looking for the crux of the character’s dilemma, a rhetorical question, or grabbing the reader with a tagline.

Why does anyone care? Excellent question—hence the rewrite. Several actually. It took work to pin down why anyone would care and want to read my book.

Maintaining an even ten

Ten queries are out and its been quiet. Of the seven rejections, one came the next day. So now I’m wondering if I hit a busy patch or maybe they haven’t gotten to me yet. OR, fingers crossed, my query letter survived the agent’s initial read through and is in a holding pattern.


I’ve read this process can take years and it has been suggested I get working on my next project just in case I run out of agents on my list to keep me moving forward.

What do you do to keep a positive outlook when submitting?



This post was written for the Insecure Writer’s Support Group where we share our encouragement or insecurities on the first Wednesday of the month, to join the group or find out more click here.



Toi Thomas | T. Powell Coltrin | M.J. Fifield | Tara Tyler


What publishing path are you considering/did you take, and why?

Short answer: I’m going traditional but I’ve mostly submitted to indie publishers. Why for the experience and creds. Now, I’m looking at landing an agent. Form rejections galore so far, but my journey has just begun. Below is what I’ve been considering since my hunt has begun.


What does it mean when an agent (reader) doesn’t connect?

I didn’t know so I searched the web for insightful advice.

Turns out that not connecting was a common rejection in a form letter. I didn’t know I was getting form letters until I checked Agent Comments in QueryTracker. Every letter was there.

One point I’d like to make is the majority of them were kind and encouraging. They didn’t have to write them like that and I know it.

I also revamped my query package and am trying again.

Any of you find an agent using the slush pile? Care to share how it went.