The most important part of finding an agent for a traditional publishing route is mastering the query letter. The query is a sales pitch to the agent capturing their attention and pulling their interest into your story. There are a few parts that it you should be aware of when it comes to the query - the hook, the log line and the actual pitch. Lets take a little closer look at each aspect of your query.
The hook is also known as your tagline. Think of it like the quick line on a movie poster. It is something that captures the reader's attention and pulls them in making them have to know more. My most recent book Survivor had a tagline of A nightmare hidden in a dream. It is at the top of my synopsis on the back cover as well as the bookmarks that people bought along with copies of the book.
Immediately following your tagline is the log line. This is the part you would find written in a tv guide for those that remember reading such things. It is the part that gives a few more details, offers some hints about what happens. You want to make sure not to give away too much while also keeping them interested. It is a very fine line but with practice and several drafts it can be achieved, it is just a matter of practice.
Then comes the official pitch. Basically it is the full synopsis and even gives away parts of how the book will pan out. You want the agent to know it is the type of book they will not regret getting into. Of course because the query is only one page you will not get into too many details but it is important that to also make sure that the agent finds it compelling. It will also make the book easier to sell if there is a well written synopsis so make it as easy as possible for your target agent to see themselves taking on your business.
The last thing to include is the about you section. Make sure the agent knows about any awards you have achieved, any audience you have created or anyone in the industry that you have made contact with. It is absolutely what and who you know because they can help others know you and your work better than you alone.