I’ve been following Query Shark for a couple of years now, and it’s always a great insight into how to write – or how not to write – a submission query. The latest submission, though, is bang on, so I thought I’d share it with you: Query Shark #224 In the shark’s opinion, this is an almost perfect query – read and learn.

English: Great white shark at Isla Guadalupe, ...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

While aimed primarily at the US market (in the UK we are told to write more of a ‘cover letter’, with the pitch contained within), there is so much useful information on this blog it is essential reading for anyone about to contact an agent. And of course, you could always send your own sample to Query Shark – but be prepared for some harsh criticism if the shark thinks you deserve it!

What is fantastic – and unique – about this blog is that it takes the lid off the reasons why agents reject submissions. While in reality you might only receive a form rejection (just a simple Thanks but no thanks), Query Shark tells you exactly why she’s rejecting. And, better still, gives you advice on how to improve, and the opportunity to send the revised submission again.

Do read the backlist of submissions – nothing annoys the shark more than submissions continuously making mistakes she has highlighted many times before. Well, you can’t blame her really, can you? And you wouldn’t really want to annoy a shark!