Querying agents and publishers is hard. I know it because I’ve been there. When I first began looking into the process it was overwhelming. So many blog posts, and twitter tags, and dos and don’t and still I made simple mistakes that could have been avoided if I’d only read that one extra tweet.
When I finally got the querying process down, I tried to help others. I browsed Reddit, and writing forums, and Facebook, but the questions seemed to be all the same. So I decided that instead of repeating info, I was going to compile it into an easy to use tool for writers new to querying. I didn’t want it to be just another blog post. I wanted it to be more. A link anyone can post when someone says ‘how do I write a query?’ and provide a complete answer.
The first thing I did was put together all the information I’ve gathered over the years. My first query was in 2015, so there’s a whole lot I picked up.
Second, I needed a website. So I went to the library and got the HTML5 and CSS3 All in One for Dummies book by Andy Harris. I took a month to read it, take notes, and figure it out until I felt ready to begin developing my vision.
And then, after weeks of writing (and rewriting) code and making it look the way I wanted to, Query Letter Builder was born. It has everything I wanted:
- A pre-querying questionnaire to make sure you’re ready to query.
- Step-by-step instructions on how to write a query.
- Tips on how to get your query noticed.
- Warnings on how to avoid auto-rejections.
- Resources for querying and getting critique/feedback.
Once I thought it was good to go, I emailed some agents asking for them to take a look and let me know what they think. The responses I got were incredibly positive! They thought it was a great resource for writers, even though they couldn’t provide a quote to avoid issues with it being promoted by the agency. I incorporated the few tips they had and now it’s available for everyone to use.
So if you, or anyone you know, is looking to begin querying, keep Query Letter Builder in mind!