Sep 16, 2009

Query- Born on a Day When the Sun Didn’t Shine

Dear [Agent],

When twenty-something Grace marries her high school sweetheart she looks forward to their long and happy life together. Instead, a brutal assault leaves her not only violated, but widowed as well. After grieving for a year and still feeling unable to move forward with her life, Grace decides to make a fresh start in a place that holds no bad memories; she packs up her life and moves across the Atlantic to find solace in a cottage that she inherited from her Scottish grandfather.

Once settled into her new home she meets a man who annoys and intrigues her in equal measure--but he doesn’t scare her as most men now do, and that piques her curiosity.

She should have been scared.

Hagan is a vampire who still has human desires. He loves Grace and would give anything to be with her forever. Regrettably, his bite would only turn her into a zombie because his venom is weaker than the Morţii who created him; but that doesn’t mean the temptation’s not there.

To further complicate matters, there are those in the vampire community who think Grace possesses a mirror called, The Soul Collector. It’s the only mirror that allows a vampire to see their own reflection. Unfortunately it also traps the soul of any vampire who looks within it, conferring their strength upon whoever controls the mirror. It’s up to Grace, and Hagan--if he can be trusted--to figure out how to safeguard it from those who would use it for their own corrupt purposes.

According to agentquery.com you represent women’s fiction. I hope that you will be interested in representing my debut, “Born on a Day When the Sun Didn’t Shine,” complete at ~85,000 words. It is a story involving vampires, but at its heart it’s about love, loss, and all the complexities of the relationships we all experience.

Thank you for your time and consideration.


Sincerely,

Kristy Hutchison

11 comments:

Gina Logue said...

Kristy,
I really liked your query and your story.

My only suggestion is with the last paragraph.

Instead of “According to agentquery.com you represent women’s fiction.”, I think it might be better if you actually list a couple books that this agent represents to personalize it.

Great job.
Gina

Donna Hole said...

Great query. I think its ready for submission.

I agree with Gina though.

Much luck to you.

........dhole

Natalie and Rick Nuttall said...

OMG! Can I get a copy of your manuscript? I want to read this book!

Seriously, I'll help edit it if you let me read it!

email me, nat.rick.nuttall@gmail.com

-Natalie

Vipul said...

I think this is a great query. You do a great job balancing set-up at first and then bringing in the twist with the vampires. If anything, I would maybe try to condense the last two paragraphs of plot a little if possible. Also there shouldn't be a comma before "The Soul Collector." Otherwise, I think this is ready to rock!

Gina said...

Great query!

I really don´t think you can call this ´women´s fiction´ in a query though. IMO the paranormal element wins the genre wrestle (especially since it´s not some magic realism type thing like, say, in The Time Traveller´s Wife, but actual fully-blown vampires). I would definitely call it Paranormal Romance. Just to be on the safe side make sure your first round goes out to agents who represent both WF and PR.
In that context the bit about ´the complexities of the relationships we all experience´ sounds out of place and puts the whole, otherwise excellent, query on a very unsure footing.

I´d put a colon after ´no bad memories´.

´that allows a vampire to see their own reflection´ - sounds better to say ´that allows vampires to see their own reflection´.

The hook section is a touch long; I´m sure you can tighten it further.

I´d leave out the agentquery.com sentence, as it´s really not personal enough to count as personalization.
Also, a ´debut´ is what it´s called when it finally comes out (as I´m sure it will!), but not what you call it in a query. Say nothing about ´debut´ or ´first´ or anything like that, just ´my novel´.


Good luck!

Rick Daley said...

Interesting story. I agree that this doesn't strike a chord as Women's Fiction, though.

Best of luck, as I understand it anything with vampires is a tough sell these days...but it does seem that you have a unique spin on it. Hopefully an agent will pick up on that, and (even more) hopefully your prose will reflect a marketable voice.

Natalie and Rick Nuttall said...

Kristy -

Do you have a brother named Q?

-Natalie

Victoria Dixon said...

Hi, Kristy. I think you've got a great story in there, but you need to trim the query to thanree sentences. The good news is, you already have them: When Grace marries her high school sweetheart, she looks forward to their long and happy life together. Instead, a brutal assault leaves her violated and widowed. Grace moves and once setstled, meets a man who doesn't scare her as most men do and that piques her curiousity. She should have been scared. Okay, I cheated. That's four sentences, but that last line carries needed impact.

This is a paranormal romance and you should call it that, but you can certainly add in the bits about love and loss. Calling it the correct subgenre shows the agent you know what you're doing.
Best of luck!

storyqueen said...

I just have to say that your query surprised me. I completely did not expect the vampire element....and when it popped in, my brain smiled at your craftiness.

Good luck.

I think I'd send it out if I were you.

Shelley

Kristy Hutchison said...

Wow! Thanks guys. You've inspired me to send out another round with a few changes.


Gina - I called it paranormal romance in previous queries, I was trying to broaden the net, but you're right, it is what it is. You and Gina L also make a good point, I was trying to personalize it with the agentquery.com sentence, but maybe that's not personal enough.

Natalie - I'm an only child =)

RCWriterGirl said...

I really liked the query, but agree with those who say--you can't call it women's fiction. It's a romance or a paranormal. Not women's fiction.

Good luck.