A geeky girl living in the big city, making her way, the only way she knows how... no wait, that's The Dukes of Hazzard. Who am I again? Oh yeah, a pop culture obsessed writer, publishing person, and occasional nerd. And I'm getting married. I talk about that, too.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

More Advice from an Agent!

Yes, ok, I know I said this wouldn't be all that regular a feature, but the queries that came across my desk recently inspired me.

Helpful Hint #2: Spell things properly.

It ought to go without saying, but nothing does in this business, I've learned. I've seen queries with with word "query" misspelled, with the author's own title misspelled, and far too often, with my name misspelled. That's not only a red flag, but it's a simple thing to fix. Look, if you're querying an agent, you have a reason for it, right? You've looked them up on the internet, noticed that they represent the type of books you've written, maybe even paged through one of their client's books and noted their name in the acknowledgements. You've done that research, so let it show, and spell the agent's name right. This is particularly jarring if you've managed to email them at bobsmith@bobsmithagency.com, and then write "Dear Mr. Smyth" in your query letter. Maybe you really are unsure, and have seen their name spelled two different ways in your research. You know what you do then? Keep researching. Keep Googling. Find a third mention, and see what spelling occurs most often, and use that.

And always, always, always use spellcheck.

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