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Bad Choice of Query Sample?

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I'm polishing my manuscripts in prep for sending one out in my queries to agents. The one I want to send out is a double-layered story, where the verbal text tells one element of the story and the illustrations tell the second. I'm not an illustrator, which means each page of text is followed by an art note that explains the second layer of the story. I don't get super detailed with the note. I just make clear what's happening in the secondary story line.

Should I pick a manuscript that doesn't require so many art notes for my queries?

Or, can having this double-layered story make my manuscript stand out when querying?

I'm worried the agent will see all the art notes and think that's my usual style and that I'm trying to be controlling. Will making the unique style clear in my query be enough to stop that from happening?

I know the answers to these questions are basically, "it depends on the agent," but if anyone has experience with querying a double-layered narrative like this, I'd love to read your thoughts on whether or not this manuscript is a good choice for querying.
#1 - April 10, 2021, 05:05 PM

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If you can concisely explain what's in the art notes up front, do so. Like: Throughout the text, the dog does the opposite of what the main character asks. This presents your vision but allows you to cut out notes. I do realize this won't work for every idea. But it can help if you can do it. This can be at the top of the manuscript as a single note and in the query letter. Good luck.
#2 - April 10, 2021, 06:55 PM
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It's not a bad choice, Erika. I imagine your story is quite humorous and humor sells. As Debbie says, state it in your query letter and include your art notes in the manuscript itself. Good luck!
#3 - April 10, 2021, 07:24 PM
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And if art notes in the ms can be avoided by doing as Debbie suggests - with a blanket statement at the start of the ms and/or query letter - then do so. Sometimes illustrators come up with even better ideas than the author had intended.
#4 - April 10, 2021, 11:01 PM
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Thanks for your feedback! After meeting with my critique partner, I ended up changing the structure of this manuscript. No longer double-layered in the same way. But, I’ll keep your advice in mind for my next double-layered idea!!
#5 - Yesterday at 03:12 PM

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