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#1 Tyokunbo

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 01:45 PM

I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..

 

 

 

Dear Agent,

I have chosen to send this query to you because you successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller,

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. He stabs Rika’s twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp.

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. Revenging could cost her life.

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels, KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton.

 

Zachary Brown has published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#2 W.P.

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 02:19 PM

Dear Agent,

I have chosen to send this query to you because you successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller,

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, ((sounds like an odd big of information to be here. I suggest sticking to the hook))the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister ((I suggest keeping it just as "twin". we assume the gender is female right away)) is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. ((I wonder why the "until". When he comes calling she stops cherishing her bond with her sister? I think we might need an explanation or the removal of "until"))He stabs Rika’s ((who is Rika?)) twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, ((implied. adding it sounds a bit odd)) just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp. ((not sure what this has got to do with Kari's crush. Sounds like an odd introduction to the love interest.))

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, ((no idea what you mean but since the sentence still made perfect sense I assume it isn't necessary))she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. Revenging could cost her life. ((I'm very confused. You allude to many conflicts and secrets, but they are so vague that they can't be enticing, they just leave me confused. Also, because your first sentence talked about their "supernatural bond" I thought it was relevant to the plot and that it was a supernatural sort of story.))

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious ((I don't see the connection to the query. You might want to specify the traits that your story shares with these. fast-paced? "wonders and magic" is too vague and agents might not appreciate it)), infused with the allure of heist novels ((but is this a heist novel?)) , KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton.

 

Zachary Brown has ((I have<--- it's weird to write about yourself in the third person in a query)) published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.  

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

 

 

 

Your story sounds very interesting and seems to be filled with conflict and mystery, so it's definitely appealing. But I feel like the query isn't doing it justice. Not yet at least. I think you could tighten it up by deciding what the main conflict is and writing around that. I feel like we get too many unnecessary details. For instance, does it matter that the dead grandmother was a sculptress and  that she was murdered fifteen years ago? Not really. But then there are also things that are relevant to the story that are too vague or glossed over. I pointed out those instances above. I hope my comments help. :)

 

 

If you could take a look at my query as well, it'd be great. :)  http://agentquerycon...back/?p=358070 



#3 Nessa

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Posted 18 July 2018 - 04:51 PM



I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..

 

 

 

Dear Agent,

I have chosen to send this query to you because you successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller,[Could cut down the word count. "I'm querying you because you sold Aaron Clark's MY HOME, which is similar to my 51,000 word YA thriller, KARI." You should identify why they're similar. You might want to consider adding another comp.]

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago[Is it important to note fifteen years? You can trim the word count by changing this segment to "the granddaughter of a murdered sculptress"], the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life [I don't know what you mean by supernatural bond. Is it telepathy? "one of the things she cherishes most in life" is cliche and can be reworded to lessen the word count.]– until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling.[Can delete "comes calling"; I don't know what that means.] He stabs Rika’s twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp.[What do they have to do with his jail term? And what does Thomas Kemp have to do with this?]

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders.["settle scores" is vague. Is she going to kill him? Get him in jail? I think you could tie the chase to the murders even tighter. Right now they feel disjointed. How do two separate events connect to each other?] As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. [Thomas doesn't add anything to the main plot that you're describing. You can leave him out of the pitch.]Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. [These stakes read like filler. I'm not feeling involved. Tie the stakes closer to the plot. Show that she's really risking her sanity. If she's risking Thomas, you'll have to show how he's tied to the central plot.] Revenging could cost her life.

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels, KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton.[These are a lot of comps. Generally, you want to shoot for two books that are recently published, don't have viewable adaptations (film/movie), and don't have humongous fandoms.]

 

Zachary Brown has published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.[Bio is 1st person. Also mention the publisher.]

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#4 bookgirl_kt

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Posted 19 July 2018 - 10:26 AM

Here are my suggestions:

 

I have chosen to send this query to you because you represent (doesn't imply other agents aren't good enough or that your book would be hard to sell) successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller,

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. He stabs Rika’s twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp. The first part of the sentence doesn't seem to belong with the second--it makes it sound like Kari's love life is as important as her sister dying. I'd split these two plot points up. Also, why does the telepathic bond matter if her sister dies right away? Does it make the death particularly traumatic?

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. This is a nice line. The danger hasn't been completely established, though. Instead of "the greater the danger" can you be more specific? Does something happen which nearly kills her? Something happens which threatens her sanity, maybe connected to her telepathic powers? More details help a query. Revenging could cost her life.

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels, KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton. These comp titles are all good, but there are too many of them. My suggestion would be to focus on the books. And I'm jealous you could think of so many, that's impressive!

 

Hope I've helped! This sounds like an interesting story. A link to mine is below.



#5 Springfield

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Posted 19 July 2018 - 12:28 PM

I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..

 

 

 

Dear Agent,

I have chosen to send this query to you because you successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller, This reads oddly.

 

For Kari James, age the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. What the what? There's WAY too much in here, and I've got no idea what the sculptor (also, seriously -- sculptress? Don't do that.) has to do with this, and it's again oddly worded as it doesn't sound like she's a twin from the setup. He stabs Rika’s twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp. Again, WHAT? Who's Rika? There are two sets of twins? Also, the heck does "the brash Thomas Kemp" have to do with any of this?

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, Why? Where are the cops? What other scores? Ishe comes to realize her twin sister’s killing Still don't get who was killed.  is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Why is it greater? He's the killer? What conspiracy? Where are the cops? Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. Revenging could cost her life. Revenging isn't really a word -- also, so her bf is killing lots of people and she figures that out, and apparently considers just being fine with that, because otherwise she'd... lose her bf? What? Also, I assumed the original killing of the grandmother tied in here. If it doesn't, why is the dead grandmother in the query?

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels First, this is a cringeworthy comp sentence if I've ever seen one. Second, it makes no sense at all -- how is a YA, what, mystery - similar to heist and car chase movies??, KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton. Who?

 

Zachary Brown has published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES. Person.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#6 Tyokunbo

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Posted 20 July 2018 - 12:03 PM

REVISED QUERY

 

Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, a 51,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

For Kari James, a 15-year-old student of Graham High School, the bond  with her twin sister is one of the most important things in her life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother breaks it by shooting Kari’s twin sister dead in an act of vengeance.

 

In the days following the murder, Kari decides to revenge, after she discovers allowing the killer to go free could cost her sanity, as the trauma from her sister’s death seems to endure due to the bond they formerly shared.

 

As Kari closes in on the killer, she realizes he is part of a big conspiracy, as students of Graham High School start to die one after the other. Before she knows it, Kari is trapped in a world filled with villains and secrets. She must choose: either to abandon her search for revenge and risk losing her sanity, or continue with the search for the killer and risk losing her life.

 

Kari will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#7 Bibliophyl

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Posted 20 July 2018 - 02:28 PM

Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, a 51,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

For Kari James, a 15-year-old student of Graham High School [don't think we need to know the name of the school--it's just not important], the bond  with her twin sister is one of the most important things in her life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother breaks it by shooting Kari’s twin sister dead in an act of vengeance. This part I highlighted in blue is worded confusingly--there are a lot of clauses and a lot of info and I think it can be streamlined. Do we need to know that her grandmother was murdered? it's not mentioned at all throughout the rest of the query and I don't see what impact it has on the plot. 

 

In the days following the murder, Kari decides to pursue revenge, after she discovers allowing the killer to go free could cost her sanity, as the trauma from her sister’s death seems to endure due to the bond they formerly shared. I don't quite understand the meaning of this last sentence. Is it something paranormal? or just normal grief/PTSD after losing a loved one?

 

As Kari closes in on the killer, she realizes he is part of a big conspiracy, as students of Graham High School start to die one after the other. This is super interesting and I almost want to focus more on this conspiracy---I think it's the most interesting/hooky part of your query so far. Can you expand a little and compress the stuff that comes before? Before she knows it, Kari is trapped in a world filled with villains and secrets. She must choose: either to abandon her search for revenge and risk losing her sanity, or continue with the search for the killer and risk losing her life.

 

Kari will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown

 

 

These are just my thoughts--your story sounds interesting and I hope I could be helpful.



#8 Tyokunbo

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 11:52 AM



I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..







Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, a 51,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

For Kari James, a 15-year-old student of Graham High School, her desire is to protect Roda, her twin sister, at the foundation day party of her school. But a jail breaker and hardened killer comes to the same party with a mission to murder Roda.

Now Kari pursues him for killing her sister, in a search for a revenge. As she closes in on him, she discovers he is part of a bigger conspiracy than she ever suspected, as students of Madville High School start to die one by one in a series of unresolved murders. Soon, Kari is trapped in a world filled with villains and secrets. She must choose: either abandon the search for a revenge and risk the hated idea of seeing the killer walk free, or continue the search and risk losing her life.

Kari will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.



Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.



Sincerely,

Zachary Brown

 



#9 Caligulas

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Posted 21 July 2018 - 02:53 PM

 

I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..







Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, a 51,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

For Kari James, a 15-year-old student of Graham High School, her desire is to protect Roda, her twin sister, at the foundation day party of her school. (Super clunky, long sentence. Try something like "15-year-old Kari James only desires [odd word] to protect her twin sister, Roda at their school's foundation party". Now, idk what a foundation party is for one. Secondly, this is a meh start. Protect her from what?) But a jail breaker (What is this?Are you saying he broke from prison or breaks people from prison or...what?) and hardened killer comes to the same party with a mission to murder Roda. (Again clunky writing. I know what you're saying, but I can tell standard, American English isn't your first language and you might need to get professional help with both this query and MS before sending to agents)

Now Kari pursues him for killing her sister (When did he kill her? You only said he had a mission to), in a search for a revenge. As she closes in on him (You're jumping too quickly. How is she pursuing him? What does she want to do. Revenge can come in many forms. Simply to kill him? Get him to confess to the murder? Take a loved one from him? Give detail), she discovers he is part of a bigger conspiracy (You haven't said conclusively how she knows he has anything to do with the murders) than she ever suspected, as students Students of Madville High School start to die one by one in a series of unresolved unsolved murders. Soon, Kari is trapped in a world filled with villains and secrets (How?). She must choose: either abandon the search for a revenge and risk the hated idea of seeing the killer walk free, or continue the search and risk losing her life. (The stakes make sense but they are 1) weak. Many people have loved ones who passed from murder where they see the murderer walk free. They don't resort to murder, if that's what revenge implies. You have to show why Kari is willing to go to those lengths and not do something like work with the police, which makes more sense. And 2) you haven't made it clear how Kari is risking her life at all. There aren't any details about what she's actually doing to find the killer or how her life is at risk. Hope this helps)

Kari will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.



Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.



Sincerely,

Zachary Brown

 

 



#10 smithgirl

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Posted 22 July 2018 - 11:19 AM

I’m querying you because you sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, (italicize title) which is similar to my novel, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller, KARI. Usually round word count.

For Kari James, a 15-year-old high school student of Graham High School, her desire is to protect Roda, her twin sister, at the foundation day party of her school. Why does she need protecting? But a jail breaker He escaped from jail or he breaks other people out of jail? and hardened killer comes to the same party with a mission to murder Roda. Why? This needs to be explained.

 

I agree this first paragraph is clunky. You also need some explanation: why is a hardened killer there to murder Roda?

Now Kari pursues him for killing her sister, in a search for a revenge. What? He actually killed her? As she closes in on him, she discovers he is part of a bigger conspiracy than she ever suspected, Why would she think he was part of a conspiracy in the first place? as students of Madville High School start to die one by one in a series of unresolved murders. I thought they were at Graham High School. Soon, Kari is trapped in a world filled with villains and secrets. Too vague. She must choose: either abandon the search for a revenge and risk the hated idea of seeing the killer walk free, or continue the search and risk losing her life. Lose her life how? What, exactly, is happening?

Kari will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES. Is this traditionally published or self published? If self published, than omit unless you have at least 10,000 sales. If traditionally published, then include the publisher. I would also include some of the publishing credits you listed in your AgentQuery profile.

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript. Just do what the agent asks and then write that. For example: The first three chapters are included below. The agent knows you will send the manuscript on request. 


So your query is nice and short, but the writing is clunky and it's too vague. I'm also missing some really vital information: Why is this killer after Roda? You don't want to overload your query with backstory, but we do need enough context to understand people's motivations. As it is, I have no idea why a killer breaks out of jail (I think that's what you mean), just to kill Roda at a high school party. 

 

Your query is also too vague, which is a very common issue. So many books are about a person trying to save a loved one from being killed, and then seeking revenge if they are killed. You need to tell us what your story is, exactly. Be very specific. Kari is trapped in a world of villains and secrets -- so generic. Who are the villains? What are the secrets?

 

Rewrite and focus on 1. Making your query specific and 2. Making sure you connect all the dots and clue us into people's motivations.

 

Can you please look at my query when you can? Thanks! http://agentquerycon...-query-post-52/

 



#11 Tyokunbo

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Posted 23 July 2018 - 02:27 PM

Dear Agent

I’m querying you because you sold John Perkin’s There’s A Girl Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, RIKA, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

Kari James  and Michael Williams have different backgrounds: Kari is a law-abiding High School student, Michael is a hardened killer just breaking out of a jail. But Kari and Michael have something in common: each has to deal with Kari’s twin sister. As the elder twin, Kari protects her sister from the bullies and other ruffians of their home town; it is mandated by family tradition. On the other hand, Michael wants vengeance by killing her; her grandmother's murder put him in jail. When Michael kills her at the foundation day party of Madville High School, Kari decides to retaliate, but discovers Michael is part of a bigger conspiracy, as his gang members are all over the place. Kari is forced to choose: either do nothing and risk a heartbreak from seeing Michael walk free, or launch a revenge bid and risk his men killing her.

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

The first three chapters are included below.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#12 Wanjoo

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Posted 25 July 2018 - 05:27 PM

Hi Tyokunbo,

 

Thank you for having taken a look at my query for The Accidental Yakuza. I appreciate the feedback.

 

 

I will reciprocate all critiques. And thanks for your assistance..

 

 

 

Dear Agent,

I have chosen to send this querying to you because you successfully sold represent Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller,.

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. He stabs Rika’s (Kari's?) twin sister to death in to avenge vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp. 

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a much bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater so does the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boyfriend  boy friend. Revengingcould cost her life.

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels, KARI will appeal to fans of  Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and G.E. Hinton.

 

Zachary Brown has I have published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript. You should only send what agent requests. They already know that you will send full manuscript if requested.

 

Thank you for taking your the time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

Zachary Brown



#13 Tyokunbo

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Posted 26 July 2018 - 12:13 PM

NEW REVISION

 

I'll reciprocate  all critiques

 

 

Dear Agent
I’m querying you because you sold John Perkin’s There’s A Girl Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

How do you protect your twin sister in Madville High School? Kari does hers fighting her twin sister's battles, joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls, never backing out of her troubles. But she couldn't have foreseen using these skills at the Marbleport Beach party, since she wasn't expecting any bully. But when she gets to the basement of the party venue, she sees her twin sister's body lying in front of her in a pool of blood on the floor, dead.

Now Kari can't get the image of her sister's lifeless body out of her mind, and since she's used to fighting her battles,  she believes she owes her a debt - and she is willing to do anything to assist the cops in finding the killers. But Kari's mission becomes a bloody nightmare as she discovers a bigger conspiracy. Ruthless men pursue Kari with relentless fury against her quest, and Madville High School students are being killed. With her life on the line and no arrests made by cops, Kari realizes her mission hinges on a terrible choice: does she have to fight to death before she finds the killers of her twin sister?

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

The first three chapters are included below.

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

Sincerely,
Zachary Brown



#14 Bibliophyl

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Posted 26 July 2018 - 01:49 PM

Thanks for taking another look at my query!

 

Dear Agent


I’m querying you because you sold John Perkin’s There’s A Girl Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

How do you protect your twin sister in Madville High School? [everything I've read advises against starting with a question] Kari does hers fighting her twin sister's battles [wording is a bit awkward], joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls, never backing out of her troubles. But she couldn't have foreseen using these skills at the Marbleport Beach party, since she wasn't expecting any bully. But when she gets to the basement of the party venue, she sees her twin sister's body lying in front of her in a pool of blood on the floor, dead. I think you could streamline this. "Kari is used to having to protect her twin sister from high school bullies, but her skills aren't enough to stop her sister from getting murdered at a party."

 

Now Kari can't get the image of her sister's lifeless body out of her mind, [this goes without saying since losing one's sister is bound to be traumatic, feels weird to spell it out like this.] and since she's used to fighting her battles,  she believes she owes her a debt - and she is willing to do anything to assist the cops in finding the killers. [You can streamline this too--Maybe "Haunted by her sister's death, Kari vows to find out who killed her sister and take revenge." That's really all you need] But Kari's mission becomes a bloody nightmare as she discovers a bigger conspiracy. [we need more detail here in order to hook us in] Ruthless men pursue Kari with relentless fury against her quest, and Madville High School students are being killed. [again, more detail would be great--why are students now getting killed? we need at least a hint of the antagonists' motivations to give us something to root against] With her life on the line and no arrests made by cops, Kari realizes her mission hinges on a terrible choice: does she have to fight to death before she finds the killers of her twin sister? [that's not really a choice. Also as I mentioned earlier I'd get rid of the question. Maybe something like "Kari worries she'll be killed before she finds her sister's killers..."]

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

The first three chapters are included below.

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

Sincerely,
Zachary Brown

 

It's better! The plot is more concise and understandable. Definitely an improvement over the last version. :)



#15 smithgirl

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Posted 26 July 2018 - 02:20 PM

Dear Agent:

 

I’m querying you because you sold John Perkin’s There’s A Girl Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

How do you protect your twin sister in Madville High School? Generally speaking, a rhetorical question in a query is an auto-rejection. Kari does it by hers fighting her twin sister's battles, joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls, never backing out of her troubles. Don't go overboard and make a list.

 

Rephrase this first part as a statement: Kari protects her twin sister [name] in high school by fighting her battles, by joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls. But Kari she couldn't have foresee seen using these skills at the Marbleport Beach party, since she wasn't expecting any bullies. But when she gets to the basement of the party venue, she sees her twin sister's [name's] body lies ying in front of her in a pool of blood on the floor, dead. Kari's sister is a main character; I would add her name. Also, you won't have to keep writing twin sister all the time, which will streamline your query and make it less wordy. The general rule is you can have up to three named characters in a query.

 

When I read that Kari protects her sister against bullies and mean girls, I assume it refers to name calling, social exclusion, all the things that bullying usually entails. But I wouldn't expect standard bullying to result in murder. So I also wouldn't expect anti-bullying skills to protect her sister from murder. Because of that, this paragraph doesn't follow logically, at least not to me.

 

Now Kari can't get the image of her sister's lifeless body out of her mind, and since she's used to fighting her battles, she believes she owes her a debt - and she is willing to do anything to assist the cops in finding the killers. Anyone would help the cops find their sister's killer. This explanation is superfluous. But Kari's mission becomes a bloody nightmare as she discovers a bigger conspiracy. Soon ruthless men pursue her Kari with relentless fury against her quest, and Madville High School students are being killed. With her life on the line and no arrests made by cops, Kari realizes her mission hinges on a terrible choice: does she have to fight to death before she finds [name's] killer?the killers of her twin sister? Again, better to rephrase this as a statement.

 

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I made some comments above. One thing I still wonder is why the sister was targeted by the conspiracy. I think you need some information about what the conspiracy is: Why are people killing students at the high school? What is their purpose? It doesn't need to be complex, but you need to say something to clarify the conspiracy. Hope this helps.
 



#16 AReadingRedSox

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Posted 26 July 2018 - 04:50 PM

Dear Agent,

 

I have chosen to send this query to you because you successfully sold Aaron Clark’s My Home, which is similar to my novel, KARI, a 51,000-word contemporary young adult thriller.

 

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes with her identical twin sister is one of the things she cherishes most in life – until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. He stabs Rika’s twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp. Lots going on here. I like the first sentence, but am very confused with the second. Did her twin sister lead to his demise? How? And what does Thomas Kemp have to do with the rest of the paragraph? 

 

As Kari chases the murderer, desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boyfriend. Revenging could cost her life.

 

Okay, let's break this down from an outsider's perspective. Kari's grandmother was killed fifteen years ago, and she has a supernatural bond with her sister, who is killed by her grandmother's murderer. There's a boy, and also a grand conspiracy killing high school kids. There's also an ambiguous enemy. For me, it's too much. None of the elements seem to really connect, especially the supernatural element. It's a supernatural revenge thriller romance with a huge conspiracy in the middle? It's a lot. 

 

Filled with the wonders and magic of film classics like Ocean Eleven and The Fast and The Furious, infused with the allure of heist novels, KARI will appeal to fans of Ally Carter, E. Lockhart, and S.E. Hinton. 

 

Zachary Brown has published TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

I’m sending samples of KARI to you. Upon your request, I will send the entire manuscript.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,

 

 

​You have some interesting parts here, but for me, it's too convoluted. I think you should dig around and see what's at the heart of the novel and go with that. My query is here, if you're interested: http://agentquerycon...ry-golden-hour/



#17 Tyokunbo

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Posted 28 July 2018 - 12:57 PM

Revised Query

I'll reciprocate all reviews. Thanks, previous reviewers.

 

Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Stephanie Perkin’s There’s Someone Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

 

Kari protects her twin sister Koda by fighting her battles, joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls, never backing out of her troubles. But while Kari is used to having to protect her twin sister from high school bullies, her skills aren't enough to cope with  Michael Williams. For Michael was jailed for murdering ’s Kari's grandmother, and everyone thinks his escape from jail has to do with wanting vengeance against Kari’s family over his jail term. And when Koda’s body is discovered where Michael was last seen, he is suspected of the murder.

Haunted by her sister's death, Kari vows to find out who killed her and take revenge. But Kari's mission becomes a bloody nightmare, as she discovers a bigger conspiracy around the murder: Ruthless men pursue her with relentless fury, and Madville High School students are being killed to get at Kari. With her life on the line and no arrests made by cops, Kari realizes her mission hinges on a terrible choice: she will have to fight and risk death to find Roda's killers.

 

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

The first three chapters are included below.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,
Zachary Brown



#18 taylorhale

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Posted 04 August 2018 - 01:10 PM

Revised Query

I'll reciprocate all reviews. Thanks, previous reviewers.

 

Dear Agent,

I’m querying you because you sold Stephanie Perkin’s There’s Someone Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller. This goes at the end of your query.

 

Kari protects her twin sister Koda by fighting her battles, joining forces with her against bullies and mean girls, never backing out of her troubles. We need more context on who the MC is here. How old is Kari? But while Kari is used to having to protect her twin sister from high school bullies, her skills aren't enough to cope with Michael Williams. Who? Give us something more here. Is Michael an adult or a friend or a teacher or what?

 

"...for her skills aren't enough to cope with the return of her grandmother's murderer, Michael Williams."

 

 

For Michael was jailed for murdering ’s Kari's grandmother, and everyone thinks his escape from jail has to do with wanting vengeance against Kari’s family over his jail term. This is confusing and awkwardly worded.

And when Koda’s body is discovered where Michael was last seen, he is suspected of the murder. So Michael kills Koda. The way everything is worded so far is very stiff and awkward. 

Haunted by her sister's death, Kari vows to find out who killed her and take revenge. Didn't you just say Michael committed the murder? Why does Kari need to find out who killed her when she already knows? But Kari's mission becomes a bloody nightmare, as she discovers a bigger conspiracy around the murder: Ruthless men pursue her with relentless fury, and Madville High School students are being killed to get at Kari. With her life on the line and no arrests made by cops, Kari realizes her mission hinges on a terrible choice: she will have to fight and risk death to find Roda's Koda? killers.

 

Kari's  tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

 

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

 

The first three chapters are included below.

 

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

 

Sincerely,
Zachary Brown

Hi! Thank you for your feedback on my query :)

 

I will be honest, this is all very confusing and disjointed. 

 

The whole thing with Michael being the killer and then Kari looking for the killer is confusing. If Michael isn't the killer, maybe say something like: Michael is suspected of the murder, but he denies it. 

 

Then you need some information about why Kari does or doesn't believe Michael did it.

 

And we need to know more about why there are ruthless men around a high school. It feels like there are a lot of unanswered questions and unclear information in this query, so I would suggest tightening up the wording so it doesn't read so awkward and increasing the overall focus. It feels like there's so much going on with no clear focus.

 

I hope this helps!



#19 Tyokunbo

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Posted 08 August 2018 - 12:38 PM

Dear Agent

I’m querying you because you sold John Perkin’s There’s A Girl Inside Your House, which is similar to my work, KARI, a 50,000-word contemporary YA thriller.

Fifteen-year-old Kari Cervantes hated fighting. That’s why she stops her twin sister Koda from exchanging blows with school bullies, and it’s why she avoids getting into skirmishes with mean girls around her. When she learns bullies might attack Koda at a party, she goes there with a simple plan: talk to Koda, pacify the bullies, take Koda away. But Koda is killed by unknown persons, and Kari takes action by forming a vigilante group with four of her friends to find out who killed her sister.

But as she tries to unravel the mystery behind her death, she and her vigilante members are stalked by the murderer of Kari’s grandmother, Michael Williams, who is also the suspected killer of Koda. And as she learns he wants vengeance for serving a jail term over her grandmother’s murder, Kari senses she has to do a little fighting sometimes in the future.

When Williams kidnaps her and wants to kill her, Kari’s nature is to back away and try to avoid a fight, but doing so might endanger her life, and allow the man who is her sister’s murderer walk free. Now Kari has to choose: either back down as she always does and risk losing her life, or fight to have a chance for survival.

Kari's tale will appeal to fans of Jason Reynolds’ Long Way Down and G.E. Hinton’s Outsider.

I have published a novel, TONIGHT IS THE NIGHT AND OTHER STORIES.

The first three chapters are included below.

Thank you for taking your time to consider representing me.

Sincerely,
Zachary Brown



#20 CavalierdeNuit

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Posted 08 August 2018 - 09:38 PM

For Kari James, the granddaughter of a rich and famous? sculptress killed fifteen years ago, the supernatural bond she establishes shares with her identical twin sister name? is one of the things she cherishes most in life. Best to end this sentence here. until the man jailed for the murder of their grandmother escapes from prison and comes calling. He stabs Rika’s who's Rika? twin sister to death in vengeance for his jail term, just as Kari starts to fall for the brash Thomas Kemp who's this guy?

 

As Kari chases the murderer, she chases him? Wouldn't he be wanting to kill her too? Maybe calling the cops would be better. desperately trying to settle scores, she comes to realize her twin sister’s killing is part of a bigger conspiracy than she could ever have suspected: One by one, the students of Graham High School start to die in a series of unsolved murders. How is Kari linked to this high school? Is she a student there? As Kari gets closer to the truth and her feelings for Thomas grow, the greater the danger. Allowing the enemy to escape could cost her sanity, her happiness, and her boy friend. Revenging could cost her life. 

 

Seems this query needs a bit more information. You could definitely add more words and another paragraph for clarity. It's not clear who everyone really is, and what the great danger is. Why did the guy kill her grandmother fifteen years ago? What was the motive? Did he rob her?

 

I wish you the best of luck with this!







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