Do Not Query a Literary Agent Like This

NB Do not query a lit agent like this.


Dear agent,

  • Use the right name and spell it the right way.
  • Avoid using fancy fonts and different colors throughout. Times New Roman black is good.

Seeing as you love middle-aged Shitzus called Matilde and losing your ATM card on Sinner’s Street, I’ve enclosed a proposal for my 250k word fictional novel called “Sticking It to the Agent,” a YA/NA/A/geriatrics diatribe love story that spans every genre in existence.

  • Do not give proof of your stalking. It’s creepy.
  • Most novels are about 80k words. You’re pretty much guaranteed instant rejection at anything over 110k.
  • Don’t say anything derogatory about agents. They work hard, and why should they rep you if you think so little of them?
  • Know your genres. Know which one your MS fits in.

While you may have read many books, you’ve never read anything of this caliber, and that’s because Agent X and Agent M of the SmartAss Literary Agency don’t recognize the amazingness of all 2,060 pages of this future bestseller. There’s nothing like this on the market, especially with the ten POVs I have of every brand/diversity you can think of.  

  • Again, don’t diss agents.
  • Your MS may be good, but don’t be arrogant. It makes you look ugly. There are thousands of fantastic writers in the world of books.
  • It might not be a future best seller.  It might be utter crap.
  • There might be nothing like it in the market for good reason.
  • Keep POVs to 2 or 3 unless you can pull if off in the way Leigh Bardugo does and make each voice strikingly different.
  • Don’t write in diverse characters you know nothing about purely to have diversity.

My book will appeal to readers of Hemingway, Rowling (that’s pronounced Rolling), Shakespeare, Tolstoy, Dahl, and Stephen King; it’s a guaranteed bestseller.

  • Again with the best seller? Sigh.
  • Don’t mansplain words.
  • Don’t compare your writing to literary greats unless you have the work to prove it. (Unlikely)

I’ve loved books since I was two years old, because I was a naturally egotistical, narcissistic, pompous ass even then when my mother read Agatha Christie to me every night. I’m now 18, and the future is bright—for me and your agency, should you have the honor of representing me for the next ten decades. (I eat well.)

  • The agent couldn’t give a crap isn’t interested your reading history, your mother, or your narcissism  claims of greatness.
  • Don’t be an egotistical ass arrogant.

I won’t deign to put a short synopsis of my manuscript here. Besides, it’s copyrighted, and I’d hate you to steal even the idea of it. Please sign the attached contract if you are willing to meet my need for security around this.

  • Always follow submission requirement to a T. They ask for them this way so they can do their job and see if you’re any good at following directions.
  • Agents have no interest in stealing ideas. They have enough to do repping their talented, hardworking clients, and have no interest in catering to your paranoia.

All my friends all five of them love this book, and they’ve told me I have superb voice and give a lot of good information to my future readers.

  • No one gives a crap about cares what your friends and family think.

So do you hear me? You’d be crazy to pass on this tome. As Shylock, himself, said, “If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?”

  • Don’t call lit agents crazy if they pass. They’re quite experienced in recognizing talent.
  • Don’t add in random quotes. The query should be focused on the manuscript and your short writing bio.

You have been warned.

  • Never, ever, ever threaten an agent. Duh. That’s an unwise move.


Looking forward to hearing from you,

Phillipa Edwina Princeton III



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