Sunday, November 21, 2010

My First Request From an Agent

Wi-hoo! After a month of rejections steadily trickling in, an agent has finally shown some interest.

I found this agent at It took her 18 days to respond to my query. This was a personalized query (it specifically addressed the agent), and the first paragraph looked like this:

I am seeking representation for Sacred Fire, a historical fiction that is complete at 88,000 words. I am interested in your agency because it offers stability and support to your authors.. You stood out to me because you specifically said on your website that you look for well-researched historical fiction, and I am passionate about coming as close to the truth as possible in my writing.

You'll notice there's a pretty obvious typo in there (and the second sentence is a little awkward, oops). People ask how important typos are for agents. I guess we know the answer to this specific agent.

This was her response:

 I have read your query with interest and would like to see the first three chapters.

I do not charge a reading fee, but I do require a three week exclusive read.
Please email the materials as one .rtf, .odt, or.pdf file (no .doc or docx files please) that has embedded your query letter and contact information.

I look forward to getting more familiar with your work!

The exclusive read thing is kind of lame, but since she's the only one reading my work at this time, I'm more than happy to oblige. 

This is how I will respond:

Thank you for your interest in my novel, Sacred Fire, a historical fiction of a Roman priestess of Vesta. I would be happy to give you a three-week exclusive read. After reading the summary of the novel ********, I can see you enjoy strong female protagonists in historical settings. My novel would be a perfect fit for you and The ******** Literary Agency.

Wish me luck!

You can read other successful query letters here and here.


  1. Teralyn! How exciting! THIS IS AWESOME!

  2. Oh my gosh, this is good news! I hope it works out!


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