H.L. Dyer (hldyer on QT) has signed with agent Katherine Boyle of Veritas Literary Agency.
Now I had an obstacle, but needed to create a character motivated to overcome it. So I considered why someone might be desperate to find such a place and why this map would exist.
And a concept was born: a twist on a treasure map, which led my protagonist Beatrice on a hunt for herself.
In fall of 2008, when the economy took a turn for the worse, I decided to take a break from querying, although I continued to receive agent feedback on submissions I already had out. One agent gave me a very simple suggestion that led to a very major revision. I began querying in earnest this spring. So, either three months or one year, depending on your point of view.
Send out a few queries and see whether you’re getting requests. If you are, you know your query works. If you’re getting requests for fulls from partials, you’ll know your writing works. So even without a single word of feedback from an agent, you can still get a lot of information about your project. And if you do get specific written feedback, so much the better. My own manuscript was not ready, in my opinion, when I first queried, although one of my offers came from those early queries. It seemed ready to me at the time, though. If I had queried all the agents on my list right away, I might not have interested the agent I eventually signed with. And if I hadn’t queried at all last year, I wouldn’t have gotten some feedback that strengthened my manuscript.
Dear Ms. Boyle,
I would like you to consider my novel, THE EDGE OF MEMORY (89,000 words.)
Maybe if Beatrice Greyson knew someone faked her death as a child, she wouldn't wish so desperately to remember the first decade of her life.
As a young girl, she collapsed in an unfamiliar house in rural Illinois. No one knew where she came from or how she ended up on war widow Thea Greyson's front porch that stormy night. Thirty years later, Beatrice is devastated by the death of the woman who took her in. But her grief turns to a sense of betrayal when she finds the letter from her birth mother that Thea claimed was lost.
When the search for her birth parents reveals the brutal details of her mother’s murder, Beatrice thinks she’s found the reason she can’t remember her childhood. She doesn’t know her past holds darker family secrets or that someone else is also desperate for Beatrice to remember. Uncovering the truth will force her to confront a violent murderer. And maybe miss out on the love of her life.
My current work as a pediatrician gives unique insight to the physical and psychological impact of traumatic childhood as addressed in my novel. I am also an RWA member and co-author the QueryTracker blog.
THE EDGE OF MEMORY would appeal to readers who enjoy the work of Jodi Picoult and Anita Shreve. The full manuscript is immediately available upon request.
I appreciate your time and look forward to hearing from you.
Heather Dyer, M.D.