In order to get anything published–a short story, a novel, poetry or nonfiction if I wanted to do those–there has to be an official declaration, an introduction for the work and those who might be willing to promote it or print it. This introduction is the query letter and I’ve been working on mine lately.The big motivator for sending out query letters as of late has been to promote Mind & Machine. I’ve had a solid edit done on it for a couple of months now and there’s no need for it to be sitting around. It’s the start of my big series, I have to make it grow. To get there, I need to find someone to promote it to the people in the publishing industry, else I don’t think it’ll get the exposure it really needs.
Of course, there’s more than just a simple message of “Hi! I’m a writer and I wrote this book. Promote/publish me!” It’s not that easy, but that’s not a problem. Instead of making an ass out of myself, I get a chance to say what I’m doing, why it works, and who it might appeal to. If I’ve done my research right, I can make it appeal to the agent or editor themselves, if only because they are the next audience I have to reach.
I get to talk about me, if only a little. I can explain where I’m wanting to go next with my writing–such as the possibilities of sequels. I also have a chance to say what I’ve recently done. Aside from blowing my own horn with self-promotion, this also tells the editor or agent that I have been published and where, if they’re interested, they can read my work. I’m so grateful to the story “Dreams of Freedom,” if only for that fact alone.
In the past couple of days, I’ve been fortunate. I’ve sent letters to a couple of agents using online means. I’ve done research into their tastes, so I might explain what my story is from a perspective they might actually be able to embrace and enjoy.
I do these things because that’s the next step from where I’m at. I might be able to tell people online about a book or story, but an agent or an editor can tell the world about my work. That’s an advantage I’d love to have.