Query Letter Writing with Caitlin Alexander and Cynthia Manson

    Sunday, November 17, 2019 at 1:00 PM until 4:00 PMEastern Standard Time

    Sarah Lawrence College
    1 Mead Way
    Bronxville, NY 10708
    United States

    Instructors: Caitlin Alexander and Cynthia Manson
    1 session, $200

    Bring a draft of your query letter and receive hands-on, personalized feedback.

    If you’re serious about getting published, you’ll need an irresistible query letter to land the agent and publisher of your dreams. In this in-depth workshop, a literary agent and an editor will guide you through how to write an effective query letter, including:

    • The all-important “hook”

    • What comp titles are and how to select the right ones

    • How to describe your book in a succinct, attention-grabbing paragraph

    • What to include (and what not to include) in your author bio


    • What agents and editors are really looking for

    • The best methods for querying agents

    • How to read between the lines of rejections letters

    You’ll have the option to share a draft of your query letter in the workshop and receive feedback from the instructors. Don't have a query letter yet? Don't worry. You'll come away from this class with a bevy of advice and inspiration to get you started.

    What participants say:

    “I had become discouraged with the process of writing query letters to agents, and these three hours dispelled those dark clouds!”

    “A plethora of information and examples about terms like hook, synopsis, platform, and also about what agents and editors look for in a query letter was offered. Questions were welcomed and answered. The presenters were both thoroughly prepared and clearly knowledgeable, but most helpful was the ability to have my query and those of others individually analyzed. A very good workshop.”

    “Very informative, interesting, and organized information made it easy to follow. I would definitely recommend this workshop to others.”

    “Cynthia and Caitlin were extremely competent and relatable. Good connection with the audience.”

    “Valuable information presented in a clear, succinct, yet entertaining manner.”

    “Clear, objective, insightful, and concise.”

    “I didn’t know how to write a query letter, and the suggestions for changes recommended by the instructors were very helpful.”

    “Offered a lot of terrific ‘insider’ information.”

    “Definitely a must recommendation to a first-timer.”

    Caitlin Alexander has been editing books for more than fifteen years. She spent much of that time at Random House, where she acquired and edited New York Times bestsellers in fiction and nonfiction. She continues to edit bestselling and award-winning books as a freelance editor and can be found at editedbycaitlin.com.

    Cynthia Manson is a well-known and respected literary agent who represents a number of bestselling authors in a variety of genres. She graduated from Scripps College for Women in Claremont, CA. Manson has worked in both magazine and book publishing, including for Sterling Lord Literistic, Putnam, Bertelsmann, Scientific American, and Advertising Age magazine. She is well connected to the Hollywood community and has brokered numerous deals in the book-to-film-and-television market.

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    Note: Details about room assignment, parking, and any other information relevant to the course will be emailed to you the week before classes begin. If you have questions about the registration process, please call us at 914-323-6170 or email writinginstitute@sarahlawrence.edu.