My first blog - in this place as opposed to my occasional Blogspot ravings - has to be about today's cause for yanking-out-of-hair: query letters. I read a piece of advice recently that specifically said the first thing you should say is how you found/selected your current victi ... sorry, agent. Then yesterday having got a bit caught up in #queryfail on Twitter (after the event, I have to say) I find another who says quite categorically that this is the last thing you should say. As in "don't say it," not as in "make it the final point of your query letter."
It makes sense to study the individual guidelines of any agent you're hoping to ensnare, but usually all the information you can find is for submissions - rarely is it possible to find guidelines for the initial contact, the thing that will make or break your submission before it's even read.
So today's task is to re-write my query for the agent I would next like to target, and think myself lucky that she is one of the few who do actually outline their specific requirements. What a pity she's based in the USA - although she has said she accepts queries from the UK. Hooray for electronic documents!