Show, not Tell

There are 3 rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.

The Voice of a Query

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I’m not sure many people have talked about voice in a query, other than that it needs to be there. I’m no expert, but I may have a few tips to integrate your character’s voice into your query.

Falling in Love

Falling in Love

What’s the advice?

Queries need to be written in a third person subjective point of view. This means that when you write, “she fell in love with him,” you’re using the exact same words your character would use to describe her budding feelings. Would she rather say, “she fell for him. HARD,” or would she say, “her feelings for him blossomed into love.”

The trick here is to mentally write your query in first person, using your character’s voice to write it through their viewpoint. Why can’t you just write the query in first person? Because your character didn’t write your book. A query in first person can be a gimmick and I’m sure a lot of agents don’t want a gimmick.

If you’re getting a lot of critiques saying your query sounds like a synopsis or a summary, try rewriting your query in first person to get at your character’s voice and how your character feels about what’s happening. Then switch it back to third person (which is pretty easy!) and you should see a difference.

Good luck!


Written by Jessica Lei

November 30, 2010 at 6:00 am

Posted in Queries

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