Procrastinating and Getting Ahead with the Query Letter

The blue butterfly–a symbol of transformation and wonder, a key theme in my book.

I’m about a third of the way through the second draft of my novel, (which I’ve always imagined with a cover of a blue butterfly), but I’m hoping to have a solid query letter BEFORE I finish the book.  I remember how exhausted I was from the writing process after completing my very first book–and how little tolerance I had for writing the requisite queries and synopses. Maybe by completing the letter early, I’ll actually properly query the dang book, which is my third attempt at a full-length manuscript and my second novel. (I gave up after about twelve queries on my previous books for a variety of reasons best left in the sand.)

Anyway, the query letter. I feel like publishing it, though I’ll definitely get feedback before I send it out, and I suspect it will change often in the months to come. It’s an urge I’m going to honor because it feels like a victory just to be this far along in the process.

So here she be:

Dear Agent X:

I’m sending my query for WONDER GONE MISSING, a novel complete at 96,000 words. (Yes, I’ll add personal agent stuff here.)

In the desert city of Albuquerque, cult expert and underemployed philosophy professor Sandrine Novak, is haunted by her brother’s recent suicide and a spate of gruesome murders of homeless people. But when a friend and mentor, Alonso Alonso, offers her a job at the New Mexico Library of Wonder, she feels like she’s getting a second chance.

Full of strange and curious objects, the library is a dream endeavor. But then Alonso goes missing, and she learns both he and her brother were entangled in a cult devoted to the feminine divine. As she searches for her lost friend, she must reexamine all that she knows about her family’s own history in order to uncover the costly secrets both her brother and Alonso were trying to keep. Along the way, she encounters a socially awkward perfumer, a chain-smoking librarian, and a non-believing Buddhist nun.

Part detective story, part tale of a grieving sister, the story looks at the wonder and meaning of everyday life. WONDER GONE MISSING is suffused with mystery, the grim realities of modern existence, and prophetic visions of what it means to truly live without fear.


Probably going to change some things. I need to find comps, and I’m thinking now I might want to focus on a murder that happens midway. Then again, maybe not.

I’ll keep playing with the letter. And working on the book.






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