Here’s my first attempt at a query letter. Tell me what you think in the comments section.
10 June 2006
M_. Agent Soandso
1000 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY 10010
Dear M_. Soandso,
I am writing to query Lithium, a 70,000 word complete novel. Lithium centers on the character of Marianne Caxton, a poet and novelist who suffers from manic depression. I became interested in manic depression after reading Kay Redfield Jamisonís memoir An Unquiet Mind.
Marianne abandoned her son Mark at the age of three after discovering his father Quentin was having an affair. The story is told from Markís point of view. The action begins with Mark returning home to his fatherís house in Seattle and learning of Marianneís murder.
Mark sets off to the Midwestern college town of Ann Arbor where Marianne spent her last days. He is searching for the answer to the questions, ďWhy had she left? Where had she gone? What had she done? Whom had she met, lived with, gotten drunk with, fucked, broken the heart of (besides the obvious)? Whom had she loved? What goes into nineteen years of life?Ē During the process Mark must fight through his own severe depression during the summer of 2001. He learns of his fatherís affair with Marianneís sister Laura, and he entangles himself in two separate affairs as he discovers the story of his motherís life and death.
Lithium spans the last quarter of the twentieth century and the beginning of the twenty-first. It is a story about renewal, about rising from the wreckage.
Thank you for your time and consideration.