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Jaina

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Query Letters You'd Never ...
« on: October 13, 2003, 10:15 AM »
I'm going to call this one "Query Letters You'd Never Write Send."  Because sometimes you might feel like writing these, but you'd never send them!  Would you?

Faye Keditor, the (totally fictitious) editor at Fun! Fun! Better Than TV! Books For Young Readers (FFBTTV-BFYR) is accepting query letters for all sorts of book projects.  Picture books, middle grade, young adult... chapters, easy readers, non-fiction--you name it!  Faye's tastes run the gamut, in fact, some say she has no taste at all.  At a recent conference, Faye was heard to comment "All these manuscripts are like, future Newbery-winners!  Too high quality!  Why won't somebody send me something DIFFERENT??!"

Maybe YOU have "different" project you'd like to query Faye Keditor about!  Or maybe you're writing to "status check" a previous submission.  Or maybe you just have a question about (or beef with) the publishing world in general.  Write your letter-you'd-never-send here.  (Remember, if you've just found this board--this is just for fun.  There really isn't a Faye Keditor.  Sorry.  :P )

Hope you'll play.  And since we're not going to have a vote for a "winner" this time, maybe I can play too!
« Last Edit: October 13, 2003, 12:40 PM by Jaina »

Jaina

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2003, 12:53 PM »
Dear Ms. Keditor:

On August 6th, I mailed you Robert's Refrigerator Rules!, a fantasy tale about a boy who finds an old refrigerator at his local dump, climbs inside, and travels through time.  On August 11th, I sent you a status query.  I've sent a status query every week now for two months, with no word.  What's up at FFBTTV-BYFR??

Something is obviously wrong with your voice mail, too.  You haven't returned any of my calls, even though I keep leaving my number.  But I finally found your address on the web, and I'll be dropping by tomorrow morning around 5:30 am (that's when my flight gets in).

I have another book I'd like to talk to you about, too, so I'll bring that one with me.  Allie's Alien Adventure is another fantasy story, but this one is really realistic because it's based on something that really happened to me.  I have some more ideas, too, like Betty's Bigfoot Blues.  It's the story of a girl who is in love with a bigfoot monster.  It's also based on fact (I have pictures).

I'd be happy to sell all these books, even the ones that are just ideas right now, to FFBTTV-BFYR!  So see you tomorrow!

Cordially,

Me (I'm not putting my name and phone number here because--duh--I've given it to you a million times before!)


Lilli

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2003, 10:25 PM »
Dear Ms./Miss/Mrs./Missus/Mr. Keditor:

I am sending you my story so you will buy it.  I need you to buy it so I can pay my Sears bill.  I need to pay my Sears bill so I can get my lawnmower off of lay-away.  I need to get my lawn mower off of lay-away so I can mow my grass.  I need to mow my grass so I can find my little dog who is hiding it in somewhere.  I need my little dog to get out of the grass so he can chase away the neighbor's cat who decided to move into my house.  I need to chase the cat away because it keeps peeing on my carpet.  Because it keeps peeing on the carpet my house stinks and I can't breathe right.  If I can't breathe right I get a headache.  If I get a headache I can't write another story.  If I can't write another story, I can't sell it to you.  If I can't sell it to you, I can't pay my Walmart bill.  If I can't pay my Walmart bill I can't get my toilet seat off of lay-away.  If I can't get my toilet seat off of lay-away...oh never mind, I'll save that story for the next letter.  That is if you buy this story so as I can get my lawn mower.

By the way, the name of the story is Flappy the Flatulant Flamingo.  You'll love it.  And you'll love the next one too, Merle the Hurling Beaver.  Oh it's not what you think, Merle is on the Olympic team.  He hurls a javelin.  And I bet you thought I was going to write something gross.

Sincerely,

Victor Hector Herman McGillicuddy, Children's Author

bballmom

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2003, 07:22 AM »
 :dr :dr  oh lill pickles   :dr :dr  The people working across the hall are wondering what I am doing in my office, I am laughing so hard!  (oh, sue me, I'm on this board at work ;)).

I have a hard enough time writing a good query letter, I'm passing on this contest.  My brain is frozen today anyway!


Offline Anne Marie

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    • Anne Marie Pace
The 5-Paragraph Query Letter
« Reply #4 on: October 14, 2003, 07:35 AM »
Dear Editor,

Many children's books have been written over the years.  Some are funny, some are sad, some are happy, some make you laugh.  I would like to tell you about my book.

First, my book is for children.  It is for three year olds to six year olds who don't know how to read yet.  It is for their parents to read to them.  In the case of children whose parents do not know how to read, that is a sad thing, and a teacher will have to do it.

Secondly, my book is about things children like.  Some children like bunny stories.  Some children like more exciting things like tiger stories.  Some would like an exciting bunny story.  That is the kind of story mine is.

Last of all, my book is available to you to be printed at your convenience.  It is all typed up.  It can be sent to you at any time.  When you ask for it, I will send it.

In conclusion, I would like to say something about myself.  I was taught writing by my great high school English teacher Mrs. Pace, who taught us all about the five-paragraph essay.  If it weren't for Mrs. Pace, I would not be where I am as a writer today.  Thanks, Mrs. Pace!!

Sincerely,

Wanna Write

ps I would tell you about the self-addressed stamped envelope for your response and thank you but I didn't have a paragraph left.

PIGLOO (Henry Holt, 2016)
VAMPIRINA BALLERINA HOSTS A SLEEPOVER (Disney-Hyperion, 2013)
VAMPIRINA BALLERINA (Disney-Hyperion, 2012)
among others

Lilli

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2003, 08:25 AM »
I'm lol over Anne Marie's.  Love that P.S.

Okay, bball Mom get control over yourself.   ;D

I'm glad you enjoyed it.  I wasn't sure.  It came to me about the time I was trying to get into my pajamas, so I came downstairs and typed it up.

Anyway, thanks to both of you for perking me up.  I was a bit bummed over the sudden epiphany that I think I've ruined my four year old for life!  Oy!!!

Jaina

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2003, 09:20 AM »
I knew some of you nuts would come crawling out of the woodwork  :duh: :duh: :duh: and give me a good laugh!  Thanks!!

Offline HB

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2003, 09:41 AM »
I'm glad you're not making us vote on these ones Jaina, cuz they're all too funny. I'm with bballmom on this one. Cubicle cities don't make great places for  :dr :dr :dr. I think  I think I hurt something trying to surpress my laughter.

Lill Pickles, I can hardly wait to read Merle the Hurling Beaver.

Deetie

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2003, 10:07 AM »
Dear Ms. Faye Keditor:

Do you remember me? I was the one who followed you around at Midyear, offering to polish your shoes and turn your bed down at night. I would have been more than happy to do that for you and you didn't have to get so darned mean about it. It's not like I run around doing this for just anyone, you know!

You are my dream editor. And I do dream about you. I dream mostly that you love my book and invite me to NYC so you can see my pretty face because you're going to need that on that book cover to really promote the book. As you well know, it's not what you write, it's how you look and how marketable you are and I'm here to tell you that I am very attractive so the whole of the United States is going to want to buy my book just for that picture.

And for your information, I am ready to travel at any time.

I'd tell you about my book but it's just like one of any other thousand books you get on a daily basis and I don't know why you'd even bother reading it before you bought it. I have sent it out to four hundred and twenty three editors because I know that sooner or later one of them is going to bite but I'm hoping that you are the first.

Ok, so the book is about this dog who eats the crotches out of underwear and for desert picks apples off the tree in the back yard. He flings them in the air and plays with them before he eats them, which really is a nice touch. By the way, it's a mystery, the mystery being can they patch their underwear after he poops it out all over their yard.

Yes, I know. It's unusual.  But it's better than TV, trust me. The kids are going to be roaring when they see the illustrations I done of him hunting all over the house for underwear and him finally having to break into the laundry room. Did I tell you that he's a very intelligent dog? Well, he'd have to be to pick that lock.

So, anyway, I am sending along my manuscript which is now titled The Dog Who Devoured Da Underwear.  I will wait by my phone and expect your call atleast by Thursday.

Best regards,

El Stupido Lingo

CrummyButtons

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2003, 10:15 AM »
I am sooo supposed to be steam-cleaning my carpets right now. Here goes.

Dear Ms. Keditor,

Hello! Can I call you Faye? How are you, Faye? I am fine.

When you were a child, Faye, did you ever wonder what it would be like to fly in a rocket ship and explore outer space? Or did you ever wonder (when you were a child) what it would be like to dive in a deep-sea submarine and explore the bottom of the ocean? Then, hoo boy, do I have a story for you!

My story is about a young boy named Mike. Mike is eleven years old. Mike is just like you when you were a child, Faye, because he, too, likes to explore things. One day Mike decides that he wants to explore New York City. So, he crawls out of his window late one night and sneaks tippy-toed to the interstate. There, he meets up with a kindly man who offers to give him a ride to New York City. Oh, the wonderful adventures they have driving across many state lines together, Faye! Then they finally make it. New York City. The Big Apple. The city that never sleeps. New York, New York! Where the Bronx is up and the Battery’s down, and the people ride in a hole in the ground. Their kind of town, New York City is. Faye, I would tell you about the many wonderful adventures they have there, but I don’t want to spoil the book for you.

Enclosed please find my hand-printed manuscript. I was going to type it up for you, Faye, but I thought you might want to read some of the things I crossed out to double-check that I didn’t decide to delete any gems that should really be included in the book. Also, if you could correct any grammar and sentence structure mistakes I made in red pen, that would be great, too. I tried to proofread it once after I wrote it, but I got frustrated and stopped. I’m not an editor, after all, you are. Best to leave the writing to the writers, right Faye? [JK]

Well, that’s it for now. Give me a call once you’ve had a chance to look this over and we’ll take it from there. We can discuss my contract over dinner and drinks, which you can bet will be better than TV, if you know what I mean. Next Thursday or Friday would be good for me.

Yours truly,
Odie Payne
« Last Edit: October 14, 2003, 10:16 AM by CrummyButtons »

Deetie

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #10 on: October 14, 2003, 10:21 AM »
Very funny, Crummy. And such a personal letter, addressing her by her first name OVER AND OVER AGAIN. LOL LOL

Jaina

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #11 on: October 14, 2003, 10:30 AM »
ROFLMAO, as the computer geeks say.  Not that I am one, or anything.

These letters are probably just a little too close to the real thing.  Especially that last one.  Crummy Buttons, isn't part of you just dying to mail that off?  Just to give someone up there in NYC (my kind of town) a laff?  Not with your actual name attached, of course.  No, not with my name, either.  How about Verla's?   ;)

Offline amyo

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2003, 10:43 AM »
These are all too funny!
 :dr


------------------------------------

Dear Faye:

Isn’t this cool?  My name is Faye, too!  That’s why I picked you to read my manuscript first.  I wonder if we’re the same sign, too?

Anyhoo, I know you will love my book.  It’s got everything – action, adventure, romance, history, geography and an adorable talking slug.  And it rhymes!  Well, mostly, anyway – it was hard to keep the rhyming thing up for all 66 pages.  But close enough, right?!  

It also works as a song – I’ve set the text to music (an original composition, of course – I’m a pretty good accordion player, if I say so myself) and have included a cassette of me singing this new hit song.  (Sorry about the recording – I couldn’t get the tape deck to work properly and I think you can hear the dog barking in the background.  But he’s just singing along – ha ha!)  I think Madonna should sing the version that would be included with the book – after all, she loves kids, too!

You’re gonna love "Sammy, the Sailing Slug!"  All the kids in the neighborhood do.  They even bring me slugs now, which I kind of wish they’d stop doing.  Sometimes they leave them on the doormat and … let’s just say it’s a mess.  But we don’t need to include that illustration in the book!

Let’s see.  I’m mailing this on Tuesday, which means you’ll get it by Thursday, so I’ll call you on Friday morning.  If I don’t hear back from you by noon, I’ll try you every hour after that.  I also found your home address on the internet, so maybe I’ll just stop by sometime.  How's this weekend look for you?

This is so exciting!  I can just tell we’re going to be best friends …


XOXO,

Faye Kriter  (and Sammy, ha ha!)
"Paradise is exactly like where you are right now, only much, much better."  - Laurie Anderson

Lorraine

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #13 on: October 14, 2003, 10:54 AM »
Psst, Faye,

I'm in the next stall over...I bet no one's thought to catch you here, hee hee!!!!  But I just heard your awesome talk about how you're looking for good stories.  Hellooooo!  I'm your ticket to fame!!!!  

So anyway, this is my first conference and I'm so excited that I keep having to use the potty.  Isn't it just a grand coincidence that I ran into you here?!!!

And so I figured, what the heck, I'll save some postage, and you'll be the first to have a crack at my coool story.   My story is soooo awesome.  You can't even imagine how awesome.  But I don't want to tell you about it yet.  (You might be tempted to steal my idea--ha ha ha!!!!!)

Oh--I hear you flushing--I better get this to you, like now.  See that piece of toilet paper waving under your stall.  Grab it!  This is the BIG moment you've been waiting for!!!!!

Tell me what you think when we're washing our hands...you do wash your hands don't you????  Ha ha ha.

signed,
pee brain


whew--did I really post this?   :o  I better get back to work...  

Jaina

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #14 on: October 14, 2003, 11:02 AM »
Isn’t this cool?  My name is Faye, too!  That’s why I picked you to read my manuscript first.  I wonder if we’re the same sign, too?

Amy, how did you know that's what goes through my mind every time I see a listing for an editor named Susan?  Have you ever noticed how many editors named Susan there are?  Do you think they'd like me more??   ;)

lj

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #15 on: October 14, 2003, 11:40 AM »
 :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr :dr

You're all killing me!  These are hilarious!

Offline HB

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2003, 03:11 PM »
Oh drat! This is what I get for typing out my letter before checking the latest update on the board.  I swear I'm not plagarizing Lorraine. Never a new idea. But since it's already typed...

RE: Requested Material

Hey Kay!

Long time no see! It was great hooking up with you at the conference last week. Too bad we didn't get a chance to meet face-to-face; what with you being on the other side of the washroom stall wall and all. Heh, I made a rhyme. I did that with your name as well if you didn't notice. I'm a poet and I know it! LOL! Guess that further illustrates what a natural I am at this.

I trust you enjoyed "Mack the Yak Talks Back". I hope the typesetters didn't mind the yellowish stain from the unfortunate incident with the bathroom floor. When can I expect my advance on that story?

While I was waiting to hear from you, I dashed off another story. You know, sometimes I astound myself at the speed I whip these suckers off at!

Anyhoo, my new story is "I Knew a Gnu", a tale of friendship and loss on the plains of Africa.

I'll phone you next week. We can do coffee.

Chow sister!

Cheesy Writer Schmoozer
« Last Edit: October 14, 2003, 03:13 PM by HB »

Offline HB

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2003, 03:18 PM »
And to make up for the lack of originality in the last one:



Harlequin Romance Publishers
123 Main St.
Somewhereville


Dear Editor,

Let me tell you a story about a poor woman, barely kept her family fed. One day the woman sees a story on E-Hollywood about a children's writer (JF Kowling I think it was) who was on welfare. She wrote some books about a wizard and became rich. (Have you heard of her?) That's when I decided that children's writing was the career for me.

I hope you enjoy my children's book, "I Knew a Wizard". I'm sure it will go with your line of books quite nicely.

If for whatever reason you don't want to publish my book, could you phone me at (613) 555-1234 and explain why. It would be a big help. Thanks!  We literary types got to stick together. Oh, and let me know of any other publishers you think might be interested. I think I got all of them in Writer's Market but there may be a few that weren't in there that I missed.

Sincerely yours,

I. Mailalot
« Last Edit: October 14, 2003, 03:20 PM by HB »

tem2

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2003, 03:38 PM »
This is one I actually received, more or less verbatim, when I was editor for Mythic Heroes.  Read it and weep.
 

Dear Editor:

I have just compleeted the gratest book ever ritten!!!  My book is so good, it will make all other books obsoleet!!  Everyone will reed this book over and over and over again!!!  My book is so good that nobody will ever want to reed anything else ever again ever!!!

In order to make my book available to poor peeple, I'd like you to sell it for five cents per copy!!!  You'll still make money becuz you'll sell so many copies!!!  The govermint will make my book reekwired reeding in every skool!!

I can't let you reed it or tell you what it's about yet. Not until you agree to publish it, becuz I've heard that editors can steel your ideers!!!

Sined, Bob the Othur.

--tem2

kateiam

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #19 on: October 15, 2003, 10:09 AM »
tem I almost wet my pants when I read yours!

Kate

Cateyes59

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #20 on: October 15, 2003, 01:30 PM »
This is such fun and I love reading everyones contributions. Great stuff!
Here's mine:

Dear Faye,

You just have to read my new book “Sammy, the Talking Snail meets Abigail the Artichoke”. I just know it will be a winner. It’s got everything going for it: exciting, well rounded characters (Sammy is a bit rotund, tee hee! I made a joke, did you catch that?), an interesting plot (Hey, get it while it’s hot, the Y & R are interested in my rare talent and want me to write some scripts for them!) in this fast paced adventure(Well, maybe it’s not that fast paced. It is about a snail after all.)

The book is almost in rhyme and Sammy talks with a lisp to give him that heart warming appeal. Abigail doesn’t talk at all but she is such a vivid green character she doesn’t need to. Who knew artichokes could have such depth?

I just know this could eventually be developed to make a wonderful cartoon series to rival Care Bears and Pokémon. Disney, watch out!

Oh yeh, my phone has been disconnected since the last editor I contacted got fed up with being called fifty times a day. Talk about touchy. Everyone told me that you had to be persistent. It says so in all my writing books.

I’ll drop by your office early next week to let you take a peek at the real McCoy. I just know after reading this Newberry Award winning manuscript, you’re going to want to draw up the contract immediately.

Sincerely,
Wanda B. A. Righter

Lorraine

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #21 on: October 15, 2003, 04:18 PM »
Yay Cateyes, good one!  ;D

I get such a kick out of reading these--keep 'em coming.   :writing3:

Offline Jen

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #22 on: October 15, 2003, 05:43 PM »
Dear Ms. Keditor,

I wrote a book.  I bet you'd like to know more, wouldn't you?  Yeah, I just bet you would.  Sometimes I think you already know a little too much for your own good.  I bet you hate me already.  Everyone does.  I bet you want to read my book, even though you hate me.  Stop staring at me like that.  The book is written for children.  Do you have children?  I bet you do.  I bet they'd hate me too. I told you to stop staring at me.  My book is a ten thousand word picture book that I translated from some stone tablets I found in my bathtub.  I would send you the tablets, but that's what THEY want me to do and you wouldn't be able to read them anyway.  So I ate the tablets.  

Stop.  Staring.  At.  Me.

Sincerely,

Wouldn't You Like to Know  

Dystar

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #23 on: October 17, 2003, 10:04 PM »
Letter #1

Dear Ms. Keditor:

This is just to let you know that I'm officially burning all of my bridges. I'm fed up with the publishing world and editors who say, "It's good, but..." If it's good, darnit, why don't you want to publish it?

So, here you go. Here are every single one of my manuscripts. Do what you will with them. I don't care. I suspect they would make great toilet paper. At least that's the impression I get from all you idiots.

Don't bother sending a rejection. Just send money. I dare you.

Sincerely,

Ima Nauthor

PS: I have a communicable disease, and I sneezed in the envelope.


Dystar

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #24 on: October 17, 2003, 10:06 PM »
Letter #2

Dear Contributor:

I'm sorry, but your magazine/book/anthology/publishing house does not suit my needs at this time. I wish you success in your editing career.

Signed

Ima Nauthor

Cindy

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #25 on: October 18, 2003, 04:35 AM »
Dear Editor:

Enclosed you will find my 400 page manuscript:  CARLIE COCKROACH:  LIFE UNDER THE REFRIGERATOR.  Poor Carlie is lonely there among the dust bunnies and dirty pieces of old string and broken shards of dried spaghetti.  So, one day, he strikes off to see the world, or at least, the kitchen cupboards.  What will happen when the Board of Health shows up with a big can of RAID?  Will Carlie survive the roach bombs, the big shoe that narrowly misses his head when thrown by the owner of the apartment, Mr. Ew?  

LIFE UNDER THE REFRIGERATOR is a heart-warming tale, perfect for children.  With the help of other friendly vermin with cute names, Marty Mouse and Minnie Millipede, Carlie learns the eternal lesson of "there's no place like home."  

I have plenty of experience with cockroaches, so I am following the writing advice of "write what you know."  I could even take some photos, if you want to use one on the cover.  

I don't see anything quite like my book on the market, so I'm sure you'll be able to sell lots of copies.  The closest thing I see to it seems to be CHARLOTTE'S WEB, and that's done pretty well, so I think my book will, too.  

I'm going on vacation next week, so you'll want to call me before then to make publishing arrangements.  

Thanks very much.
Aspiring Author  

Offline HB

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #26 on: October 18, 2003, 06:37 AM »
Cindy, have you been looking under my refrigerator?  :o

Online Verla Kay

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #27 on: October 18, 2003, 06:50 AM »
Oh, this is SUCH fun!  Okay... here's another letter to the editor that should NEVER be sent.
----

Dear Editor,

I wrote the best story ever!!!!!  You're gonna love it!  It's the next best seller of all time and it's called, THE CAT IN THE HAT COMES BACK and it's just like The Cat in the Hat.  My family and all the kids in my daughter's class at school just LOVE this story!  They say I'm gonna be the next  Dr. Seuss!!!!!!

I'd send it to you, but I'm waiting for my copyright on it so I know it can't be stolen.  Meantime, I'd be happy to discuss it with you over the phone.  My number is 602 554-6969.  (That's a message phone number, as my real number is unlisted and I don't ever give it out.  But you can leave a message telling me a good time to call you back.)

I'm looking forward to doing business with you!!!!

<holding my breath waiting for your response>

Newbie Writer
« Last Edit: October 18, 2003, 06:51 AM by Verla Kay »
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LOG ON PROBLEMS? Use this link to submit a Trouble Ticket to Verla Kay:

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ClaraRose

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #28 on: October 18, 2003, 09:25 PM »
Dear Mz. FR Editor:

Enclosed is a nice manuscript you are sure to love.  My great-aunt read it and told me it is sure to be on the best-seller list, given the proper attention.  She is terminally ill and too old to get on the Get-Your-Wish foundation list, but she said that if you buy my manuscript -- and put her name in the dedication, that would be enough for her.

It is titled:  Quantum Java for Preschoolers and although some words are big, I don't think it keeps it from being appropriate for preschool.

Hope you like the scented paper with the cute balloons on the sides, I got the stationary from Stuffed Mailboxes.  They said it was sure to get your attention -- and as a new writer I need all the attention I can get!!

Thanks again,

My aunt is looking forward to your accepting my manuscript (as am I),

Mz. Air O. Ghent

P.S.  I'll call collect for the acceptance in three months -- your stated response time.  I don't have a phone, I'll call you.

words4kids

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Re:Query Letters You'd Never ...
« Reply #29 on: October 21, 2003, 10:42 PM »
Lill Pickles, I just about rolled out of my seat laughing at your query letter.  These are all hilarious!  
 :dr
Great job you guys!