Today I'd like to discuss the query letter revision. You've posted your query in various contests, blog hops and places that offer help and advice. You've gotten your advice. What do you think? Did you like the advice? Was it genuinely helpful?
Now what do you do?
The query for my YA historical fictions, THE MEMORY KEEPER, looks completely different now than the first time I wrote it. My first line was:
River Morgan is petite, pink haired and not quite seventeen, but she knows how to erase a memory.
I loved that sentence (plus a whole lot of others...) but NO ONE else liked it. Some said it sounded forced. Some said it wasn't needed. Some said it didn't make any sense. Well, I liked it. Actually I loved it. But int he end, I decided to delete it. It hurt. I fumed and fused over the beautiful piece of art I had created. But alas, I changed it.
To many, my new sentence isn't good either. But that's okay. It's a learning process, and I will never say I've arrived and need no more learning. After going back and reading my old query and comparing it to my newest one, I realize the query really doesn't even sound like me. It seems like I lost a my voice in the query.
But then I also read the pages of my manuscript and find the old query doesn't match the voice in my pages, either. So I thought about it for a while and came to the decision I must have written my first query while trying to impress someone. Yes. I know the point f a query letter is to catch the attention of an agent, but you will not do that if the query is flashy, forced, fake or not you.
Something else to remember is the fact that someone who has not read your manuscript has no idea what our story is about. your job is to hook them, surprise them, and entice them to want to know what our book is about. Get straight tot he point, leave out the flowery details, and be as creative and interesting as you can.
So, take your critiqued query letters, and edit away. Make it work for you. Remember, critiques are so subjective and it is always up to YOU to decide if deleting or changing something is the best thing for your novel.
What about you? How do you handle revisions? Do you always agree with what others say? Do you fret over deleted words or sentences?
Happy revisions, beautiful guys and dolls:)
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