Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Mar 2

#5 - contemporary middle grade. The voice isn't right for MG readers - lots of fart jokes (not a deal-breaker, of course) and it feels like the narrator is talking down to the reader. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Mar 2

#4 = contemporary romance. Heroine goes back home and hero digs her out from financial troubles. I don't love this hook (yes! this answer is subjective) and no sense of chemistry. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Mar 2

#3 = YA fantasy. Some decent concepts in here - world feels unique and heroine has potential but the writing is poor (grammar, sentence structure, clarity, etc) PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Mar 2

#2 = science fiction. Poorly crafted query that's a list of chapter titles and character names but no hook or story. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Mar 2

#1 = YA fantasy. I'm not a big fan of "heroine was shocked when the world changed" kind of hook. Too obvious. What's her relationship with the conflict and what's the choice she makes? PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

In good news - more than 90% of my clients come from the query slush pile so it *does* work. Good luck y'all and happy writing! #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

#5 = adult fantasy. Author self published to "see if readers would like it." PASS, I don't represent previously published novels. #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

#4 = fantasy young adult. Protagonist was "shocked" when the world ended. This is not a compelling hook. Tell me what she/he does - what's the conflict and stakes? PASS #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

#3 = fantasy romance. Heroine is forced to marry hero and then she finally figures out a way to kill him in his sleep and take the throne. This is not a romance novel! PASS #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

#2 = contemporary young adult. The first two paragraphs of the query describe backstory entirely. Protagonist isn't introduced until very end of query. PASS #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

a note on genre = imagine walking into a bookstore. On what shelf do you picture your book being shelved? That's the genre. #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 23

#1 = "science fiction with fantasy, romance and horror that straddles the young adult and adult market." ouch. It's really important to nail genre in a query letter. PASS. #5queriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

Keep at it y'all! #queries

90% of my clients are query slush pile finds. Yes, querying is a crazy, opaque, intimidating process but it works! I read all queries, myself, carefully. #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

New York Times bestselling author @MarRogerson was a query slush pile find. Here is her original query letter as an example of ACCEPT = writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/g… #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

When reading queries, I'm looking for superior craft (excellent writing) plus a high concept pitch (a book that's easy to describe in a sentence) plus some personality/ chemistry (I love it and want to read more!) #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

#5 = contemporary romance. Great premise but, alas, the writing is weak and there's not enough detail about the protagonists for me to feel the chemistry. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

#4 = science fiction. Query includes author bio, title, links to previously published (self published) books and no pitch. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

#3 = middle grade fantasy. An interesting heroine but the premise and conflict feel generic and derivative. My gut reaction is "we've seen this kind of thing before" and writing isn't strong enough to convince me otherwise. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

#2 = paranormal romance. Writing (basic grammar and sentence structure) is weak. Query says "lots of cool adventures" but isn't specific about conflict or romance. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets

Sara Megibow @SaraMegibow · Feb 2

#1 = science fiction. Query is unspecific about the plot and is confusing in terms of characters. Lots of details and lists (what exists in the world, who the people are, etc) but it doesn't tell a story. PASS #5QueriesIn5Tweets