Friday, December 19, 2008

query letter template from Nathan Bransford, agent

This query letter template from Nathan Bransford's blog. Two steps.

Step 1. Here's what you need to have:
[Agent name], [genre], [personalized tidbit about agent], [title], [word count], [protagonist name], [description of protagonist], [setting], [complicating incident], [verb], [villain], [protagonist's quest], [protagonist's goal], [author's credits (optional)], [your name]


Step 2. Here's the template, filled in with the above information.


Dear [Agent name],

I chose to submit to you because of your wonderful taste in [genre], and because you [personalized tidbit about agent].

[protagonist name] is a [description of protagonist] living in [setting]. But when [complicating incident], [protagonist name] must [protagonist's quest] and [verb] [villain] in order to [protagonist's goal].

[title] is a [word count] work of [genre]. I am the author of [author's credits (optional)], and this is my first novel.

Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best wishes,
[your name]

(These are Mr. Bransford's updates to this post on his blog, March 31, 2008.)
UPDATE: I should note that "villain" does not necessarily have to mean an actual person, alien, monkey, spore, or etc. It could be a personality trait, nature, society... basically whatever is standing in between the protagonist and his/her/its goal.

UPDATE 2: If you mention a previously published book in the query letter I need 1) the publisher and 2) the year. Otherwise I'll just assume it was published by a small press sometime in the 1850s, and you don't want me to assume that.

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2 Comments:

At 8:43 AM, Blogger Ms. Theologian said...

thanks! I'm using the template....

 
At 2:02 PM, Blogger username said...

I think my agent needs an 'editor pitch' template.

 

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