Aug 7, 2009

Query- The Last Flight

Richard pulled the chord.The chute did not open. He grabbed the emergency chord and the chute did not respond. He calculated his life ending in approximately ninety seconds, not enough time to review instant replay of his life.

Richard Harper accepted offer to investigate the largest insurance fraud he had ever known. Corruption never entered his mind, nor did the idea of his wife Lydia getting seduced by Mark Flannary, CEO of Global Investments LTD.

I am looking for representation for a completed 85K word crime genre novel. This is my first go at searching for an agent and your agency was recommended as top 50 in the country for longevity and for getting results. Also, Mr. Fry, I noticed when visiting your web site, you have particular interest in crime genre.

Thank you in advance for your time reading my query and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Robert Meacham


Puff said...

Two Things:

One: Proofreading. There's an article missing at the beginning of the second paragraph ("accepted AN offer".)

Two: The set-up contradicts itself. Richard accepts an offer to investigate fraud, but corruption never enters his mind? Maybe "fraud" and "corruption" refer to different things. It's not clear from your summary.

Good luck!

Robert A Meacham said...

Thank you for pointing these two ( shoulda known better goofs)

On the second one, I was not clear with using corruption. What I meant was that Richard did not expect himself to get corrupted.

I can fix those things- thank you for reading the query.

FictionGroupie said...

I'm not sure if this is enough to get a feel for the story--what makes the story unique. I also can't hear the voice. I know brevity is valued, but perhaps a little more meat would help.

I would also suggest inserting "an" before "instant replay".

Good luck!

T. Anne said...

regarding the missing article, it has happened to me before as well. In fact even though I proof read it umpteen times I had still missed it. Only after I sent the query to a bunch of agents did I catch the glaring deficiency. On the bright-side I did manage a partial request.

Great site Rick!

Donna Hole said...

Interesting voice you have for this query. I get a mental picture of a middle aged field investigator who is used to grunting negative responses to requests for progress updates from office types. This guy pieces info together wherever he finds it and sorts it all into coherency when he’s ready to dump it on your desk.

The synopsis has a rough rhythm to it; clipped and tidy. A bit to tidy, I think. The word “sparse” comes to mind. I like how you start out with action, two dud pulls on a parachute and 90 seconds to ground zero, but what why does he need a parachute? And how, exactly does it tie in with his fraud investigation? What type of investigator is he, that his wife would meet - I’m assuming - the CEO under suspicion and end up sleeping with him? What types of conflict and intrigues put these three people together? Does your story start with Richard in the air contemplating his life (or actually, the event that put him in his predicament), and is this actually the end. Does he have a trick up his sleeve that saves his life at the last second and foils the CEO and cheating wife’s getaway plan?

Your closing is nice and concise. Polite but not gushy. And though I think your pitch could use a little more detail, I like the tone and rhythm. Doesn’t quite “flow” but it works for me.

Good luck with it.

Robert A Meacham said...

Hi Donna,
I have a revision but it is not up yet. Maybe that will take the "sparse" out of it.
Also you have questions that I should probaby address in the third revision. Thank you for responding.

folksinmt said...

Sounds like an interesting book. But I don't know if those first two paragraphs fit feels like something is missing. Which happened first?

I don't think you should say "this is my first go...". The agent doesn't need to know that you are an amateur!

Good luck with your querying!

Anonymous said...

I've seen agent blogs where they caution against beginning a query with the beginning of the book.

This is one place where you want to tell rather than show - tell us about the story. What geeks you about it?

"Richard finds himself in a situation he wouldn't have imagined two days ago - falling out of a plane without a working parachute."

just a thought.

gj said...

"Cord," not "chord." Probably should use the whole word -- parachute -- or at least the apostrophized version 'chute the first time it's used.

Robert A Meacham said...

Thank you all for your comments
and pointing out the things I should already know-- cord vs chord . I will correct this in the 3rd revision

Etiquette Bitch said...

There's also another 2 typos in the first para.: "chord" for "cord." A "chord" is something in music. A "cord" is a rope, string, etc, that connects to something, and you (usually) pull it, plug it in, wrap it around...