Like me, Like my book: the query dilemma

In the process of querying agents and editors, I find myself wanting to be liked. In very few words, the query must grab attention for my story. But the little paragraph at the end should contain bio details and it is hard not to just yell “YOU WILL LIKE IT AND YOU WILL LIKE ME!” To keep my query short, I have just removed the following indulgent paragraph from my most recent attempt at a query letter, knowing this would surely have provoked swear words from surly agents. (Don’t you just love a sentence with both surely and surly in it?)

“I am a scientist and an avid reader.  A list of my favorite authors includes Richard Adams, Larry McMurtry, John Steinbeck, Michael Crichton, Greg Iles, Carl Sagan, Barbara Kingsolver, Brian Greene, Stephen King, Thomas Harris, William Goldman and Richard Feynman. (Am I odd? I just realized that these are almost exclusively male. Let me throw in Marian Keyes and Ann Brashares from my secret chick-lit side.)”

Everyone is blogging and tweeting their top 10 songs list. Let’s start a top ten (or more) author list. (Try not to include yourself.) Go to your bookshelf and look at your books. (The ones you actually have read.) Make a list and share!

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4 thoughts on “Like me, Like my book: the query dilemma

  1. I get much more attached to books than I do authors. Authors are people and can be inconsistent – books only change as much as I have since the last time I picked it up.

    So a list of some favorite books (and their authors) looks something like this:
    A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
    Immortality by Milan Kundera
    The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

    I’ve read them each more than once and they hold me again and again. I also like some of Stephen King’s short stories – but have not found a novel of his I could endure.

    I’m much more forgiving in music and can even say I like a musician without enjoying everything they’ve ever written. Perhaps because its so much more passive than reading a book…I just don’t take it as personally.

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