For all the aspiring authors out there, here’s something you should definitely check out if you’re having trouble writing the dreaded query letter. I know that damn thing stumped me.
I just finished a two-week query workshop with CJ Redwine, and it was AWESOME! I first stumbled upon CJ by way of the Query Shark last year. Her query was the first GOOD EXAMPLE posted on that blog, and it was so stellar that I had to check out her blog. Very funny and I quickly became a fan. I followed her on Twitter, talked to her a bit, and when I joined Facebook, she was already there because she’d sent me an invitation. Earlier this year, she introduced me to her sister, HC Zuerner, via Twitter, and HC has become one of my best friends.
CJ offers a six-lesson workshop and critique during the final stage of your query for a great price. If you register early, the price is discounted. I believe she’s running another one in January, so keep checking the blogs and jump on it when the time comes. Also, if you refer someone, you can get a free 5-page critique of your MS. The first five pages, of course, and totally worth it. Even if you don’t refer someone, CJ does offer critiques. I’ve seen her critiques and it’s worth the money.
In the workshop, she covers the essentials to writing a good query letter for hooking an agent. She’ll go over the Do’s and Don’t’s of query letter writing, the three main parts of the query, and offer some great resources, such as essential agent blogs to follow and Query Tracker, a site designed to help you organize your query, who you’ve sent it to, and who has rejected it or asked for material. It’s really a great website. And she’ll answer your questions. You know you have them.
There were several revisions of my query, but we finally nailed it and I am very excited about sending it out in January/February once my critique partner and I go through one last full edit of the MS. And here it is:
Prince Charming number two was even worse.
After the last prince ran off without any notice, breaking her heart and their engagement along the way, Nemesis Mussolini swore off men and passed the time kicking ass and slinging drinks, something her mafia father would never approve of. But, when her boss Clancy ups his flirtations, it’s difficult to remember she’s not interested, especially when he gets that delicious evil glint in his eye that has her melting. Just when Nemy starts to think all men might not be bad, she hears whispers about Clancy’s less than legal past, and wants to run like hell from the idea that he could be just like her father.
While Nemy and Clancy tumble down the romance road, hitting potholes every step of the way, Nemy discovers how much of her heart already belongs to Clancy, and how much of a Don’s daughter she really is. When Clancy’s daughter is kidnapped, they must work together to use every talent and connection they have to get her back, which means Nemy must learn to trust again. If they fail, Clancy could lose his daughter forever. Can Nemy surrender in time to get her happily ever after, or is she hell-bent on letting her past keep her from the one man who could be her true Prince Charming?
Now, here’s praying that query letter works and I at least get a partial request. Last time I sent out queries, nada, but that query was awful. I can go forth with confidence now that I’ve had some great advice and learned a few things. Thank you, CJ!
Oh, and CJ, I just have one request: can you PLEASE do a synopsis workshop? I’d definitely sign up!