Over the past six months, I’ve been getting a lot of emails as I venture into the world of querying. Most often, I see the emails of “thanks… but”. Those are some of the worst — especially when they come from agents you’d think would be perfect for your manuscript. You also learn a lot — not to send off a bazillion queries at once when the query isn’t perfect.


You learn to head to other sites that offer peer review. You learn to take the criticism and the hurt and put it into writing bigger and better drafts. Soon you have a version of your query that sparkles so brightly it shines as the diamond in the slush.


Then, you start hearing the exciting words.


Can I see a partial?

Can I see the first 50 pages?

Can I see the first 30 pages and a synopsis?


Those words are great and exciting, especially when you’ve gotten nothing but rejections sitting in your inbox. Still, the greatest words ever to appear in an email have to be:


Is your novel still available? If so I’d love to consider the full.


It still is enough to make me grin. And so you, my awesome readers, what are some of the best emails you’ve gotten while going off on the grand journey that is publishing?

Plot from Query:
When seventeen-year-old Gwen Masterson finds an enchanted book that whisks her back in time, she has no idea she’s about to become the most wanted woman in Camelot. As a modern girl in a medieval world, she is the key that will allow the golden age of King Arthur to flourish.


What starts out as fun and games turns into a nightmare when she becomes trapped in Camelot. Gwen unravels the larger plot – engineered by Merlin – to change the past by finding find a strong woman who will remain loyal to the king. However, such a plan can only work if the participants are willing and Gwen certainly is not. She loathes living in this male-dominated society and wants nothing to do with the arrogant boy-king. The idea of falling in love with Arthur the Neanderthal is ridiculous and yet she’s betrothed to him! To make matters worse, thanks to Merlin’s meddling, Gwen’s life hangs in the balance as she finds herself at the top of Morgana’s ‘people to kill’ list after several assassination attempts.


As Gwen’s unwanted wedding day grows closer, all she wants to do is leave Arthur at the altar and find a way home. She refuses to be anyone’s pawn – but when her brother Leigh finds the book and becomes trapped in the past as well, Gwen no longer has a choice. With Leigh now in Morgana’s clutches, Gwen will have to follow a new destiny in order to save not only her brother, but her future and all of Camelot.


First 250 Words – *UPDATED to Chapter 1 Pages*

She had promised herself she wouldn’t cry today.


“I’m so sorry for your loss.”


“He was such a good man.”


Their words blended together as the mourners passed her by in single-file. Gwen Masterson could barely respond beyond a tip of her head in acknowledgement, her eyes staring straight ahead. Seven years ago, she had stood six feet to the right of this plot of grass on the day they buried her mother. The landscape hadn’t changed much in the intervening years, though the trees were a bit taller and there were a more headstones dotted around. Gwen remembered that day being much the same as it was today: unseasonably cold with dark clouds hanging low in the sky, threatening rain at any moment. The bright flowers resting on the lid of her father’s casket stood out in contrast to the ominous backdrop.


“He was so young…”


“I can’t imagine what you must be going through.”


Gwen clasped her hands in front of her black patterned skirt, squeezing them as hard as she could. She was burying her father after his long, and ultimately unsuccessful, battle with cancer. The last thing she needed was to cause a scene, though all she wanted to do was scream and shake the nearest person until they showed some bit of genuine emotion. Her nails imprinted red crescents onto her palms as she tried to hold her tongue and keep the plastic smile on her face.