Thursday, February 26, 2009

Query Angst!

So my friend and co-author of the BFF Notebook Series Kasie West (Eeeh! See u in a week!!!) posted on her blog a funny spoof query letter for agents! It reminded me that I had one of those too! LOL! I had to dig through my files and find it tucked away in the Pride & Popularity folder. Of course, I wrote this halfway through my first book--having no idea at the time that I was actually going to have 6 more books of characters speaking to me after P&P was done! Ack!

My real query that ended up getting me my totally awesome agent looked nothing like this! LOL! So please, unless you think this quirky, crazy and sometimes zany letter below is an actual query from an agented author... LOL! Don't copy it! Or do! Wait! i've always wondered if it would get a chuckle out of someone! LOL!

Dear Ms Agent,

For reasons unbeknownst to me I have been plagued, tormented, tricked and connived into writing a YA novel called Pride and Popularity. Which is a modern adaptation of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, all centered in and around high school. I am an US Air Force spouse currently living in Whittlesey, England with my family of six children. And other than writing and directing children’s plays and being an extremely avid fan of the great Jane Austen, have nothing more to recommend myself in writing this book.

Please believe me when I say I would’ve stopped had the demanding new characters let me. Hence, the plaguing, tormenting, tricking and conniving I was speaking of earlier. Would you know that these characters kept me up half the night and all day whispering scenes to be written? I thought I had gone mad! I found I could not focus on any other thought except this book for six weeks! As a grown mother with six children, my life is way too busy to be writing modern romance adaptations of Jane Austen. Seriously, why fix it if it’s not broke?

Whew! That said, I would like to point out that as frustrated as I have become by this novel I am in no way willing to give up on it. ßYes, was prodded to write that last bit. Characters can be so demanding! Apparently these characters Taylor, Chloe, Alyssa, Camryn, Zack and Blake want to make it out of my head and into the big time.

Enclosed, as promised to my crew, I have included a very small sample of the 62K word book. Will you please, as an agent, inform my haphazard gang and I, that you do not request our services. Or in other words, “Don’t quit your day job.” So that way I may release myself of the pressures and worries that center around creating a novel and go back to just being me. Thank you.

Most Sincerely,
Jennifer James


  1. OK, you got yuor chuckle, but I think I'll pass on seriously trying to get and agent/book publisher!

  2. I wish my fingers would type what my brain asks... try 'an agent' and 'y o u r'...

  3. As the parent of lots of young adults, I just love anyone who writes something of quality for this age!
    And to do a link, just highlight the person's name, click on that little icon on the top of your screen where you are composing that looks like a chain (mine is green). A box pops up and you put your link in there.

  4. How funny! You seriously should have sent this out, just to brighten some agent's day :-)

    I want to see the "real" one you sent. Or is it somewhere here I'm just not finding?

  5. Oh, that last paragraph is exactly what's been screaming in my head for months. Not that I actually sent a query to any agent who could actually save me from myself. But I have to do it for exactly the reasons you mention. It's brilliant!

  6. Holy cow! That's funny. and so true. I'm not sure agents would have passed on that letter. Your voice comes screaming through. It's all about the voice.

  7. ROFL, that's great!

    And I'm with Pink Ink - would you post the real letter, the one that scored your agent?

  8. Jinksy--LOL! My fingers are always have a mind of their own! LOL! Glad you chuckled, of course you're more than talented enough to get an agent! Sure you don't want to try? LOL!

    Debbie--LOL! I LOVE writing now! As you can see last year, I wasn't too thrilled with the idea. But now that I've written so many books it's just gets easier! And so much more fun!

    Pink--I so wanted to, you have no idea! LOL! But I was too chicken. LOL! And I'll be happy to post the real one. Kirsten's been super busy (understatement for the publishing world right now!) but she's halfway through an interview for me, that'll be dissecting my query and made her choose to ask for the full, along with a whole slew of questions. I'll email her and see if she's got the query part done and then post it if she does.

  9. Lori--LOLOL! Awesome! I'm so glad to know I'm not the only one feeling I've completely lost my mind! hahah! It's so true I was just like, "why am I putting myself through this torture, seriously? My life was so wonderful before this!!!" LOL!

    Lois--LOL! Screaming is one way to call my voice! LOL! Especially then! I guess it would've been a different take on querying, huh? LOL!

    Janna--YAY! Glad you thought it was funny! LOL! And yep. Let me see if kirsten's got the query dissection done and I'll post it! LOL!

  10. LOL I just wrote my second query and I KNOW it wasn't quite like that!:)) But I have to say--you put a lot of life in whatever you write!

  11. Awesome! LOL That's what I'm talking about. You totally should've sent it. I'm cracking up now. My characters have been bossing me around for a year now.

  12. Ok so I finally read most of it!!! OH MY GOODNESS! That is so me and Kari! LOL! But I think on every page we had a different crush! we went through boys like crazy! And we were always talking about someone!

    Oh man, that brought back so many funny memories and made me realzie just how funny/akward/embarrassing/
    exciting those teen years can be! i can't wait to read more of your work! You are awesome!

    have a great day!

  13. Terri--LOL! Thanks! And good luck with your query!

    Melissa--LOL! Thanks glad you liked it!

    Kasie--Darn bossy characters! LOL! Gotta love/hate them! Sheez!

    Melissa-YAY! I'm so glad you liek BFF Notebook! Seriously! It was soo much fun! don't you think Kasie is awesome too? LOVE the book!

  14. What a hoot, but some truth in it.

    Morgan Mandel

  15. You have given me a great idea! I'm going to start advertising myself as an "anti-agent" and do exactly what you ask for anyone who would like their characters to just shut the heck up!!

    Somehow, I doubt it would work, but we could always hope, right?

    Or maybe we could call it a "character agent" - someone who calls the shots for all fictional characters.

    Oh heck, with out luck, they'd probably unionize... *sigh*