Last week my agent, Fran Black of Literary Counsel, sent me an old email she’d come across. It was the first query letter I sent her, the one that opened the door to our relationship. The funny thing is this query letter wasn’t for BLOOD MOON, but another book entirely. She requested the manuscript for this other book, the first one I tried to get published, and read it. Then rejected it. And she was right to – it wasn’t strong enough, well-written enough and was way too long. But we kept in touch and when BLOOD MOON was ready she was the first agent I queried.
Reading through that first letter was a blast from the past and a reminder that even a rejection can lead to a success. Interesting to note, I sent the letter on June 6, 2010, almost three years ago. Turns out, June is a magical month in my life.
Although it’s a little embarrassing, here is that query letter…
Mainly, it’s a love story – because all the great ones are. But this is also a story of doubt and hope; tragedy and triumph; the inescapable and the unknown; destiny and choice. Robyn Bruce, the female main character, is a vibrant, easy-to-relate-to eighteen year old still struggling to put her life in order two years after the unexplained and disturbing disappearance of her mother. She escapes to rural Kansas and her quirky Grandma’s comfort, but not after a strange encounter with a man with marble-gray skin and radiant moonlight eyes. This man, who will not leave her thoughts, is Tankin, the male main character. He is Shadalune, a race of ancient, supernatural creatures, long hidden from the human world, who survive by consuming the heat from dead human bodies. He will pull her into his world, a deep-rooted, secret family legacy and a fight against a diabolic evil. Along the way Tankin will struggle to extinguish his forbidden feelings for Robyn and she to try to understand her own budding feelings for a creature she knows very little about.
The Glass Doorknob is a fresh addition to the group of supernatural novels that teens devour. This series is unique and compelling, full of action, romance, humor and thrilling twists. Young girls will especially love getting to know Robyn and find themselves blissfully lost in her love story with Tankin.
The narrative switches between Robyn’s first person account and Tankin’s third person, all in present tense. The present tense adds a realness to the story, allowing the reader to be there with the characters as events unfold and emotions form. Robyn and Tankin’s story is smart and engaging, captivating and quick-paced. The Glass Doorknob manuscript is 99,835 words long and the first in a trilogy for young adults.
I am a stay-at-home mom and while at first this may not sound like grand qualifications for publication it does allow me the time to indulge in my two favorite hobbies and talents: reading and writing. Writing has always been one of my strengths and reading an insatiable passion. I know what makes an enjoyable and marketable story. I have written a book I would love to read, one I would let the dishes pile up and the children watch movies because I couldn’t put it down.
I have one previous publishing credit: an article on teaching yoga (my job before the children) in Angles Magazine in the Winter 2003 edition.
I very much appreciate your time. I hope you enjoy the included first three chapters (below). The completed manuscript is ready for your review. I look forward to hearing from you and working with you to make this novel a success.
Thanks again for your time.
Teri Lyn Harman
Haha! Makes me smile! To all those writers currently in the torture of querying agents, hang in there! It took me five years and two books to sign with Fran and Jenn of Literary Counsel and it was worth the wait!