I think I’ve made up the difference for the earlier slow-start to the revision.

My original plan–which has since been scrapped–called for a synopsis and query letter to be created this week as well. At the end of the week I think I’ll have a solid, submittable draft of a novel but ‘the package’ is not complete.

Here is where my expertise is shaky. I can talk all day about how to develop characters and how to create goodish dialogue and how to write sentence after sentence. But a business letter?

The many agents that have spoken on the subject say that a good writer is a good writer is a good writer. Savvy? If you write a compelling novel you should be able to write a compelling query letter and/or a compelling synopsis. Deep down I agree…if you’re good you should be able to do it. But the level of difficulty is different in my opinion, and that’s what I think us writers whine about. We just want to do the fun stuff. Not the research papers.

You know how you have writing a short story and a novel are different beasts? Well, a novel and a query letter are even more different. One is a creative endeavour–an attempt to explore the foibles and fuck-ups of mankind. The other is a marketing tool–a sales letter–an implementation of many sales seminars and corporations. (So, perhaps John is the most qualified of us to create a query letter: the MBA Man.)

I have to adjust my writing muscles and I’m feeling the strain, is pretty much what I’m saying. So far, I’ve started two new novels, am editing a third, and trying to put together a ‘sales’ package. Three different kinds/stages of writing.

At least my writing biceps should be sexy enough for sleeveless shirts.

4 thoughts on “

  1. It’s a very different thing. A query letter is salesmanship. That has got to be the hardest thing in the world. After all, it answers the question- why should you read this? Personally, I’d rather never do a query letter but I know I have to. I’d rather write 3 novels than that.

  2. I think query letters can be pretty creative. I mean, you’ve got to mould them to you, to be a representation of your work, and to the fella who’s gonna read it as well. I think such things is an incredibly psychological prochess, like writing a really good psychological thriller or mystery–not speaking from experience, but imagined/wished for experience. I figure the point of query letters be to psychologically work over an agent/editor/whoever and insidiously coerce them to see things your way–but politely, hopefully. That’s what you want to do in your psychological thriller/mystery/romance/chile recipe.Chile recipe isn’t a euphemism for anything. I just like chile.The word verification word is: splatati. COOL!

  3. I’ve written business letters all my adult life, but the query is just <>that<> much different, because there is that element of creativity as well. Write it in the same voice as the novel while remaining businesslike and salesmanny. Ho-kayMy goal (as with any cover letter and resume) is to get past that first gatekeeper. After that, it’s the work doing the talking. And I hope the work speaks very well for itself and me. You, it does. No doubt.

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