I hate queries (though I hate the synopsis more.) It's something about it being the one chance you have to get an agent's attention that makes me break out in a cold sweat. I have had my query letter critiqued by Agent Barbara Poelle at a conference, and I'm going to share her comments with you later in the week, but I really want your feedback because her suggestions, while good, were not that extensive and I think she was more swayed by the accompanying material than the query. Come the fall, I'm going to be querying everyone and their dog, so I want it to be tight. What do you think?
Dear [Agent Name]
I am seeking representation for my Young Adult novel, BOOKEND, complete at 75,000 words. I am enclosing a synopsis and sample pages. The sequel, BOOKBEGIN, is currently in outline form.
Finial Smith lives in a world where discarded book characters, called QRs (Quasi-Reals), come to be recycled or pressed into servitude. The Smiths are the last natural-born family living in a village of QRs. The Farm is renowned for the fine quality of Qr workers they produce. But being the only real boy for miles is getting on this fifteen year old’s nerves. Fin’s missing his dead mother, bored at school and tired of hearing his Da tell him about Nobless Oblige – the duty all natural-borns have to care and defend the dependent and weaker QR creatures.
When Fin meets Anne, a QR who breaks away from the herd, he finds a girl who is more alive and real than anyone he's ever met. A revolution is brewing in BookEnd with QRs determined to fight for the same rights as natural-borns. Fin has to decide whether to stand with his family and let Anne be destroyed, or to endanger the world he knows to save her.
Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.