Is It Crap...Cover letters..pont neuf

Miss Snark, Literary Agent
Mayor Mike's Metropolis

Miss Snark:

whoa. What happend to "Dear Miss Snark".. this isn't a letter from my draft board is it?
Dear is like "how are you"...I don't really care (yes I do) but it's social nicety (I care a lot).

Detective Samantha Driscoll's personal life is looking up, and her professional life is business as usual until a killer starts murdering politicians in her city, one by one. Her twin brother shows up the evening of the first murder, warning of a disaster. But Sam doesn't realize how much she will be affected until the killer irrevocably changes her life.

Hot diggitety dawg. Dead politicos!!! I like this killer.
Oh wait. I bet I'm not supposed to.

"A Life Unraveled" is a story of suspense revolving around two detectives' search for a political serial killer. Detectives Sam Driscoll and Billy Chambers catch the case which turns into a deadly game of cat-and-mouse. The detectives are running out of time, and the killer continues to raise the stakes. He won't be satisfied until Sam becomes one of his many victims. But Sam is no one's victim.

oh yawn yawn yawn. this is different from EVERY single mystery involving crazed killers...how?

"A Life Unraveled" is a 68,600 word suspense novel that would appeal to fans of J.D. Robb and James Patterson.

you might want to say "highly commercial fiction" rather than James Patterson. He sells a lot but he writes like shit.

This book is the first in a series involving Detectives Driscoll and Chambers. The series will follow them through their cases and personal lives, pulling the reader into their world.

From what I've seen, I don't give a rat's retainer for these two. Why should I care? Hell, I'm cheering for the killer!

Thank you for your time, and I look forward to hearing from you. You may recycle all materials sent.

You've got a lot of room here to give us some salacious enticing details on these characters. Write about someone compelling. Give me DIRT!!

As it stands, this one is coming right back in the SASE with a "sorry not for us" in crabby handwriting on the margin.


kitty said...

A nice bit of honesty here: "James Patterson. He sells a lot but he writes like shit."

It gets to the heart of the business of writing: money.

So, how did Patterson get his first book published?

Anonymous said...

I heard Patterson, an ex-advertising guy, paid a shitload of his own money for TV ads to run in NY.


And Snarkette: how'd you feel about a dark thriller with a serial killer protagonist, like Westlake's 'The Ax?'

Anonymous said...

Oh, I see. Like Samantha is gay, and the first politician killed was her lover? Like that?

Miss Snark said...

I hated The Ax.
Im the only person in America who did though.
I'm bored with serial killers too.
blah blah blah

chryscat said...

I value your honesty, Miss Snark. And I've researched query letters until I'm damn sick and tired of them. "Use this formula." "Use that formula." "If you do it like so-and-so, you'll get great results." What a load of bullshit.
It's highly irritating.
So, I'll take the criticism you've given and put a hook in my query. I thought less was more. Obviously not. *laughs*
Thanks so much.