May 14, 2010

QUERY- STRAPPED

I see you are looking for heros with a sense of humor and I believe you would be the perfect agent for my 94,000 word love story, disguised as a horror novel, entitled STRAPPED, which will appeal to the millions of fans who consistently make horror movies debut at number one at the box office on a regular basis.

A bad batch of flu shots has just turned over half of the population into flesh-eating corpses, leaving Paul Thomas-an unemployed shock jock- fighting for his life in a world where no one dares even go to the bathroom without a handgun strapped to their side. With the power out in the dead of a harsh Iowa winter, Paul works his way south from snowy farmhouses to a well-equipped boat in the Gulf of Mexico with his girlfriend, Sophia, and his buddy, Dan. Tragically, Paul loses both of them during their migration and must now decide wether or not to continue on with only Wendy, a blond stripper they’d recently met in Kansas. Few survivors, however, and seemingly endless nights of solitude together could lead to temptation for tormented and frightened souls, that will only serve to make matters worse.

Like Paul, I am also an unemployed radio guy and devoted fan of horror movies. I have worked at four rock stations and one outlaw country station in four states, affording me the ability to successfully make a living over the past twelve years writing and editing compelling content for live on-air breaks, celebrity interviews, commercial production and stage-intros at concerts and events ranging from Rob Zombie to the WWE.

STRAPPED is set to be the first in a dark trilogy and my completed manuscript is ready to be sent at your request. I would love to work with you and thank you for your time!

Sincerely,
Sean Fisher

9 comments:

Jacqueline said...

Sean: The part where you describe the book is good. I don't think is necessary to talk about Sophia and Dan considering they die and for what I can imagine they are not part of the "love story" you are selling here.
I would add more about that, more about the plot.
Regarding your credentials, (that are great by the way, I used to work for TV) you shouldn't mention them on your query because they are not relevant to the book or you as an author.
Also when you mention about the book being a trilogy, remember to mention "this novel stands alone" that is very important when you are trying to sell the book.
check out that Nathan said about that HERE.
Have a good one! Hope I helped. :)

Jacqueline said...

Jesus, I don't know how to add a link...
Here's the link that does not link anywhere, please copy paste in your brownser.
http://blog.nathanbransford.com/2007/07/how-to-mention-series-in-query.html

Amanda said...

I agree with a lot of what Jacqueline said. I would also say you might want to include a little more of what makes your manuscript different from all of the many zombie stories out there. I get the sense of an entertaining voice through your query, so it makes me feel like you would have an interesting take on the zombie thing, but make sure you also make it stand out for those busy agents trying to work through slush piles.
Also, put the first paragraph at the end- its great for you to show you've done your research, but start your query talking about your book!

gj said...

You lost me when you compared your novel to a movie, and its targeted readers to movie-goers. The substance of the query isn't bad, but if you shoot yourself in the foot in the first paragraph, the rest of the query is going to have to be beyond brilliant.

If you're going to do a comparison, which isn't at all necessary, at least compare to a NOVEL. By comparing to movies (and complicating that by not really knowing your genre -- pick horror or romance, but not both), you're either telling the agent basic market facts (that people find horror stories cathartic), or telling the agent that you don't understand your own genre (or you'd be able to reference comparable books instead of movies). Neither of those will do you any favors.

Nicole said...

Sean,

Nice concept here. I agree with gj that you might want to update the first paragraph. You set your novel up as 1) a love story, 2) a horror novel and 3) a comedy (or at least a humorous hero).

However, the only one of those aspects that's apparent in the rest of the query is horror. I'd love to see you weave in the other two a little more, if you're going to mention them up front.

Pull us in by giving us a glimpse of your hero's humor, especially if you know that will resonate with the agent you're pitching.

Best of luck!

Pen said...

Hi Sean,

I agree with the others cut back the first paragraph to the bare bones. books aren't movies so don't compare your book to one. Agents tend to switch off when they see this sort of thing.

Also talk about what difficulties or crisis the MC and the girl face and what problem they have to overcome (other than the zombies of course) and talk up the point of difference between your book and others in the same genre.

Answer the questions Who, when, what, why, how, what's at stake? This will ensure everything the agent needs to know is covered.

Hope that helps. Good luck.

The Starving Writer said...

Sounds like most zombie stuff I've read or watched. Nothing original happening here.

You need to state what makes your novel different from the rest.

Plus it stretches my credulty to read that near 50% of populace takes a flu shot before anyone realises that it will turn them all into zombies.

What is in the bad batch that would turn people into zombies. The human body is pretty resilient. For something to alter our genetic make up so radically, it would have to be more than just a bad batch of flu shots. (This scenario only happens in bad horror flicks)

Plus, the vast majority of people that get flu shots are the very young and very old - since they are the most vulnerable.

So, how does the fact that most of your zombies will be either very young or very old play into your novel?

Suggestion here, spend some time researching flu shots, what's in them, and where they are most deployed.

Anonymous said...

I'd lose the first paragraph, which is confusing-- the story doesn't sound humorous, and saying it's disguised sounds coy. Just start right in with the second paragraph.

And correct the spelling of "whether".

Nishant said...

Nice concept here. I agree with gj that you
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