As I worked on a few query letters recently, I noticed something had changed about what I had to put in my letter. Typically, the last full-length paragraph, lists relevant experience and publishing credentials. No one starts out with credentials, but I do have some relevant experience as a science fiction writer with a biology degree.
For me, that paragraph started to grow thanks to getting published for the first. Even though “Dreams for Freedom” is a short story, I put down on my novel queries that I wrote the story, along with the book it appears it. If you get to add something like this, be sure to note the book or magazine the story has been printed in. Also, you get to add a line for upcoming releases as well, just make sure the approvals are in place for the story beforehand.
Next, you can list any book edits. I may not have any novels in print, but I have released two books in one format or another. Vitamin F appears as an ebook on Barnes & Noble and Amazon, and it has made money. That’s why I mark it down.
I make note of The Night Lands also, even though it’s not complete. I’ve been releasing it as a serial, which I note, but I list it because it demonstrates that I’m willing to do some work to tell the world, “Yes, I have a book out. Come read it!”
All those things together in my most recent query letter was about a hundred words. It’s a hundred words that get to tell an editor or agent that I am a writer who is capable. It also says I’m a writer capable of appealing to others professionally and from a sales point of view.
What does your query letter say about you?