Writer’s Tip…How To Write a Query Letter (Part 2 of 3)

cupofcoffeeWhen submitting an article online or in print, be sure to follow the instructions given by the editor regarding how many story ideas to send, the number of writing samples they want, and the format to follow when submitting. Some editors want you to cut and paste your sample articles (known as clips) directly into the email; some editors want you to send the clips as an attachment.

If you’re submitting a hard copy, be sure to use letter quality, heavy bond paper and check to make sure that the copy is clean and clear. The standard for fonts is Times New Roman, type size is 10, and the text should be single spaced with a space between each paragraph for easier reading.

It is critical that you proofread, spell check, and grammar check your document to perfection. Remember this is the first sample of your writing the editor will see, if you are careless enough to send it in with mistakes, it will give the editor a bad impression. Sloppy query letters will not get you a job!


4 thoughts on “Writer’s Tip…How To Write a Query Letter (Part 2 of 3)

  1. It’s probably harmless. But if you’re going to do this, first of all, remember to paste the pages below the query letter and not attach them in a document. Second of all, don’t include much — perhaps 1-5 pages. (My advised length refers to double-spaced pages, even if the pages do not paste into the e-mail in perfect double-spaced formatting.) Having made both those points, I’m guessing that many people ask this question because they have a lot more faith in their opening pages than in their query. I get it; they’re different beasts, and you’re trying to up your chances and protect yourself a bit. But keep in mind that while including sample pages may perhaps help here and there with an occasional agent who checks out your writing, it doesn’t solve the major problem of your query being substandard. My advice is to keep working on the query until you have faith in it, regardless of whether you sneak in unsolicited pages or not.


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