What Our Readers Said About: World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For June, 2019!

What Our Readers Said About: World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For June, 2019!

Comments and Letters About: World’s Worst Query Letters and Book Proposals For June, 2019!

Laughing out loud! What a great way to start out a Saturday morning. Thanks for all you do, Brian.

-Dennis Clark

It takes a lot of patience to weed through those letters, huh?

-Nirmala McAfee

It’s bad luck for you to have to wade through all of these, but it’s good luck for us to get to read them and have a much-needed laugh. Cheers!

-Pamela Allegretto

Your “Worst Query Letters” column tickles me. Thanks for taking the time to prepare it. I gave myself a chuckle visualizing a dozen or so of these ‘writers’ sitting around holding a seminar on writing. Then I thought “How would I ever write the dialogue?”

-Robert L. Hazlett

This is fun up to a point, but queries that fail for less obvious reasons would be more useful, queries that fall short, but were written by people who aren’t in institutions or refugee camps.

Barry Knister


You have a point, Barry. But, that’s why we call this “World’s WORST” Query letters, and not “Query Letters That Didn’t Quite Make The Cut.”

As the guy who sorts through all of these, I can tell you that the ones that don’t quite make it are really not that exciting. Top few reasons for rejections are:

  1. Having too many spelling or grammatical errors in the query letter.
  2. Offering a topic that has been written about ad nauseum (Such as “Freelance Writing Requires Hard Work – It’s Not Just Sitting Around Writing And Collecting Money”)
  3. Offering an article on a subject – no matter how well written – on something that doesn’t fit WritersWeekly’s basic format. (If I get another query from someone offering us an article on Crypto-Currency, I swear I’m going to hang myself from the mizzen mast halyard.)
  4. Offering a How-To on becoming a successful freelance writer when it’s obvious that the writer just started writing professionally six months ago.

For advice on correct querying, see: 

QUERY LETTERS THAT WORKED! Real Queries That Landed $2K+ Writing Assignments – SECOND EDITION

-Brian Whiddon – Managing Editor


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