1. Always address the agent by name. “Dear Agent” is a rookie’s mistake, it shows a lack of interest, research as well as effort. It’s akin to addressing someone as “Dear person”. They have a name, let’s show courtesy and use it.
2. Do your research. Make sure you know what a query implies (hook, summary, author bio), what each agent asks for in their query, and your work’s details (word length, genre, target audience, to readers of what books/writers it would appeal to) which you add in the query. Know your genre and target audience so you can target the right agents that rep those categories, otherwise you’re wasting everybody’s time including your own.
3. Stay professional. This means be yourself, but don’t exaggerate with gimmicks, jokes, getting too cozy with the agent (for all intents and purposes you’re a stranger so it’s creepy), being humble to the point of begging (my friend give yourself some credit), or being confident to the point of arrogance (“this is the best thing since sliced bread”, you know what I mean). We’re all human, just doing our best, but remember this is first impressions. You can be your witty and wildly enthusiastic self afterwards.
4. Be calculated. Is this your dream, and are determined to spend as many months or years necessary to get your book out there? If you just nodded, I applaud you. Or is it just a hobby and you’d enjoy seeing your name in print, but would give up after a couple of rejections? (If you just want to be famous, the world needs a better motive.) Furthermore, what’s your querying strategy? Do you want a small or major publishing company? Print or e-book (or both)? What’s your back-up plan, if any?
In short, just make sure you know what you want and how much effort and time you’re willing to invest in this.
What? *taking off jacket* I told you to bring more layers but of course you didn’t listen and now *piling scarves on her* now look, I’ve got to make sure you don’t FREEZE to death and *taking somebody else’s hat* how long have you been cold you should’ve said something sooner
Hunter, I'm also cold-
WELL DAMN BOBBI, I CAN'T CONTROL THE WEATHER.
*turns into the Ghost Rider*
*steps closer to him* Oh that's nice.
Coulson (preparing to remove jacket):
...aren't you gonna say you're cold?
I love how tender this scene looked if you could imagine it without everything else in the production still. I would love to picture that the two of them had a proper talk and sorted out all the emotional baggage that was set aside from the moment Harry left for Kentucky.
Eggsy is the most amazing subject for me in this shot.
Hannibal: And if you see Ms Lounds, give her this message. Hannibal: *makes a neutral face* Hannibal: She’ll know what it means. [later] Will: Oh, and Hannibal said to give you a message. Will: *makes a neutral face* Freddie: Oh no. The neutral face of displeasure.