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Golden Rules for Composing A Perfect Query Letter


Writing a query letter: Expert Advice.

A query letter is a professional letter that you write to a publisher or literary agent to draw their attention to yourself and the piece of literary work that you have created. Your query letter is the first thing your prospective publishing house or agency will notice about you, so you have to make sure that you create an excellent query letter that will bind the publisher or agent to you.

A remarkable query letter should give the reader a perfect understanding about yourself and your work. It should be written lucidly, yet you should work your charm on it as you are projecting yourself as an upcoming writer.

Always remember that literary agents and publishing houses get more than a dozen query letters daily. You have to make sure that you stand apart to get noticed. 

Query letter formatting is easy, yet it is a business letter and must be written in the utmost professional tone.

Below we will share with you some golden rules that you should keep in mind while writing your query letter, go through them and you'll find yourself writing the perfect query letter.

  • Addresses

The opening section of your query letter must have your address and the address of your targeted publisher or literary agent.

A proper query letter should have your full name at the top followed by your address and, below your address, you should mention your contact number and email address. After leaving one space, you must put your publisher or literary agent's name and address.

This is the proper way to start your query letter, and you must take great care in writing the addresses.

  • Keep your letter concise.

As we have mentioned above, literary agents and publishers receive more than a dozen query letters per day. Apart from entertaining query letters, they have their day to day work too and can't spend their whole day decoding your letter.

Your letter must be concise, yet providing all the necessary information about you and your literary work. Do not add unnecessary information as it may annoy the reader, and he may stop midway and reject your proposal right away.

Query letter length must ideally be one page. 

  • Formatting 

As mentioned above a query letter is a business letter and must be written as one. The primary thing that you must keep in mind while writing your query letter is that the font should be either Times new roman or Ariel and must be written in a size of 12 points.

Single spacing is a must in a query letter, you must keep that in mind while drafting your letter.

  • Use the names 

Research about the publishing house or the literary agent you want to approach, check out who is the head of the genre you have written your manuscript. Suppose you have written a collection of short stories, then you must address the letter to the head of the short stories department.

If the name of the head of short stories department is Mark Jhonson, then you must address the letter to Mr Johnson or Dear Mark. Using names in your query letter increases the chances of your letter being read by your target audience.

Fantastic query letters are always personalised, and you must never start your query letter with 'to whom it may concern'.

  • Personalise the letter 

Your query letter is the first official conversation between you and your agent. So, in the first paragraph, you must establish a connection with your agent or your publisher.

You have to explain why you have chosen the particular agent or publisher and must mention any mutual contacts with them if you have some.

  • Hooking the reader

In the second paragraph of your query letter, you must give an engaging description of your literary work that must ignite the interest in your reader. It must be short, concise sentences that sum up your work without giving it all away.


After your prospective publisher or agent is hooked, you must provide a concise and compelling summary of your work. This is the most important part of your query letter, and the acceptance or rejection of your manuscript will highly depend on this part.

Your summary must include a little information about the main characters of your work and the time and place of the events.

It should leave the reader asking for more and should make sure that the publisher or the agent asks for the whole manuscript.

Letter of query must include a compelling summary of your work, and without it, your proposal is bound to face rejection.

Your short bio

The next step of your query letter is to give a short bio of yourself. Your bio must not be longer than two sentences and must establish your credibility as a writer. It must include your previous achievements, published works, awards if any. 

Remarkable query letter samples all over the internet put great emphasis on the bio section, and you must too craft it well in order to move to the next step of publishing.

Be thankful

While concluding your query letter, you must be thankful to the agent or publisher for reading the letter. You don't have to make it a large thank you note, just a simple gesture of appreciation for the time your reader has given to your letter is enough.

Writing an amazing query letter is not rocket science, you need to follow these rules, and you will write an effective query letter. If you are finding any professional writing tutor for helping to write a query letter instantly, then contact with us

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Ashley Kolo Academic Writer (Complete My Assignment) - Sydney, Australia

Ashley Kolo have seven years of experience in content writing, Ashley is now working as a content marketer in the field of digital marketing. She loves writing assignment, editing and proofreading.

11 Dec, 2019

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