Which query text is better?
Written by
Tessa Quin
July 2010
Written by
Tessa Quin
July 2010

Dear SheWrites women, I am in need of your help. I'm about to send out queries, but I'm still undecided on which query text to use. My novel is YA fantasy: Latest version This is a simplified mix of the two. Most seemed to like the second synopsis, so I used the beginning of it, and the end of the first synopsis: Wishes really do come true! At least for sixteen-year-old Eva Jones, who lives with her obnoxious foster parents in New Jersey and wishes for nothing more than to escape to a different place. What Eva does not wish for, however, is being chased by a spooky girl, having eerie dreams, and waking up with a nasty spider with wings on her face. Stuck in the fantasy world of Mira Fir, Eva and the very hot Richard stumble into a grove of hermits and discover that they possess magical abilities. Outside the grove, Eva encounters a deviously handsome and evil young man, a very dangerous shadow-being called the Myrkvera. She is presented with two choices: either help the Myrkvera defeat the good Ljosvera empress or help the Ljosvera rid the world of the Myrkvera. Eva knows that the Myrkvera are bringers of terror and cannot be trusted. However, conflicted by her attraction to the young Myrkvera, she puts herself at great risk by choosing to help him. Is this better? Is it enough to create an interest? Is the punctuation all right? I made a post about this in the Virtual critique group, but I'd like as many opinions as I can get. Which would you think was better if you were an agent receiving a query letter? (Image from http://gacconsultants.wordpress.com/2009/11/13/)

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  • Tessa Quin

    Thank you, girls, for helping me with this. I have written a mix of the two synopsis and put it at the top of the post.

  • Tessa Quin

    Thanks Lisa. It seems that most like the second synopsis, and I think I'll use it with some changes. I'll probably post a revised synopsis tomorrow.

  • Tessa, I can only offer an amateur’s perspective or perhaps better yet, the perspective of a teacher and mom who often picks books based on summaries such as this. The second text drew me in right away. I could instantly gauge the target audience and some potential conflicts. I loved the picture created of the spider with wings-that’s a definite attention-getter and made me read on. Good luck with your query. I wish you great success with your book.

  • Tessa Quin

    Thank you Lisa :)

  • Lisa Rivero

    The second one that begins "Wishes really do come true!" grabs me in a way the first one doesn't. I'm not an agent, but that's the one I'd go for, perhaps finding a way to add the phrase "shadow-beings of darkness and death" to it somewhere. :)

    Best of luck!