Queries that Worked No. 24

queriesI’m a day late again! Here is this week’s query that worked and the last one in the queue. If you’d like to see more queries that worked please let agented/published authors know about this series so that I can post more queries!

Today I’m pleased to welcome Michelle Hauck to Off the Page, sharing the query that landed her an agent.

Just a quick reminder about this feature…

  • All these featured queries worked! Meaning they snagged the attention of an agent or editor. These books are now represented or published, or both.
  • These queries are not perfect. They don’t have to be. This is to show aspiring authors the kind of query that works despite imperfections.
  • These authors aren’t looking for critique on their queries since these books are already represented or published, but have kindly agreed to allow me to showcase these queries to help other authors currently playing the query game.

You are of course welcome to comment on all the queries!

michelle_h_(3)Michelle Hauck lives in the bustling metropolis of northern Indiana with her hubby and two teenagers. Two papillons help balance out the teenage drama. Besides working with special needs children by day, she writes all sorts of fantasy, giving her imagination free range. A book worm, she passes up the darker vices in favor of chocolate and looks for any excuse to reward herself. Bio finished? Time for a sweet snack.

She is a co-host of the yearly contest Query Kombat. Her epic fantasy, Kindar’s Cure, was published by Divertir Publishing. Her short story, Frost and Fog, was published by The Elephant’s Bookshelf Press in their anthology, Summer’s Double Edge. She’s represented by Sarah Negovetich of Corvisiero Literary.

Twitter: @Michelle4Laughs

Blog: Michelle4Laughs: It’s in the Details

Facebook: Michelle Hauck, Author

Goodreads: Kindar’s Cure

And now for the query…

Dear Agent:
 
Thanks so much for volunteering to join my Agent Greeting contest. I’m looking forward to it on August 5th. I saw on Writer’s Digest that you were looking for middle grade and decided to send you my query in hopes you will find it interesting.
Tom, the classroom hamster, wants to escape from the h-e-double-hockey-sticks otherwise known as school. His military training at the pet shop didn’t include playing house or being sentenced to a boot camp of never-ending Show ‘n Tell, math facts rap, and story time. But he’s learned a lot behind the bars of his cage. For example, if you want to keep breathing, never trust a pygmy who has earned the nickname Squeezer. Somehow he has to get away before the pygmies dress him as Strawberry Shortcake again—or worse.
When a “subspatoot” teacher fills in, Tom sees his chance to put Operation Escape the Pygmies into action. He makes a run for the border, hamster style. Bad news. The principal says a rodent on the loose is a distraction to learning and better off flushed. The way out is turned into a battlefield of snapping mousetraps, sticky snares, and poisoned pellets.
Tom seems doomed until the friendless Squeezer lends an over-excited hand. She quickly goes from supervillain to super sidekick. Now, the greatest obstacle to his freedom may be Tom’s soft spot for this lonely pygmy.
A cross between Toy Story, Monsters Inc., and those cute AT&T kid commercials, PYGMY HAZARDS is a MG fantasy complete at 34,000 words. My epic fantasy, Kindar’s Cure, was recently released by Divertir Publishing. My short story, Frost and Fog, was published by The Elephant’s Bookshelf for their summer anthology, Summer’s Double Edge. I’ve worked at an elementary school as a special needs assistant for over ten years, giving me lots of experience with pygmies.
Thanks for your consideration.
 
A quote from Sarah: Michelle’s query ticked off all the right boxes. She personalized it with more than just “I know you represent X, so here’s my manuscript”. She kept it concise, but got all the important details in there. By the time I finished her query, I knew who the main character was, what his goal was, what stood in the way, and what’s at stake if he failed. And for the win, Michelle worked the voice of her novel into the query. Even though the query was in third person (as it should be) I could imagine her main character writing it. This was a great query, followed by an outstanding manuscript.

 

So what do you think? 

If you have a query that worked and would like to share it with others, please feel free to email me at the address listed on the Contact Me page.
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  • Deirdre

    Yay Michelle!