Here's my latest query:
I have an 83,000-word YA urban fantasy set in Oakland, California called JULIA MILAN AND THE CHAPEL OF THE CHIMES, about a precocious 14-year-old who helps her grandmother learn the truth about a special boy who went missing when her grandmother was 14. With help from an old diary, an irksome ghost, and an unusual mausoleum designed by California’s first female architect, Julia Milan digs up a haunting piece of Oakland's past while uncovering a series of bizarre coincidences that suggests history may be repeating itself. Suddenly, the astonishing connection Julia and her grandmother share is even more powerful than Julia had imagined. The comps are Rick Riordan (clear writing) and Suzanne Collins (suspenseful storytelling).
I'm using the Noah Lukeman model of query writing. Three sentences in paragraph two, plus an additional comp line as suggested by Michael Neff. Let's see if that works. I received form rejections from a couple of front-runner agents and it's hard not to wonder why nothing is working. I've read a few queries that landed agents on querytracker.net, and all I can do is scratch my head. Oh well. My disappointment will pass. I have a very clear vision about this project and my journey with Chris toward a meeting in LA over at least one of our scripts. That is really the larger picture here and I'm too far along to let anything derail me.
I've been very disciplined this week, knocking off to-do list items and making great use of my time. Work hasn't been all that busy this week, so yesterday I was able to devote several hours to researching agents. I'm compiling a new list of agents to query and not spending so much time reading their blogs. It's frustrating finding an agent who seems like a good fit, only to get a form rejection a few weeks later. Really frustrating, but part of the game, I know.