If you are not sure whether your query letter will grab an agent's attention, go to Query Shark. Agent Janet Reid does an excellent job of explaining how queries do and don't succeed (with great examples).
Note: You can find a complete listing of over 100 new and established agents seeking clients here:
Agents Seeking Clients
The Bent Agency)
Victoria was born and raised in Queens, New York and graduated from the City University of New York, Queens College. Before joining the Bent Agency, she completed internships at Serendipity Literary and the Carol Mann Agency.
What she is looking for: Crime fiction and atmospheric, haunting domestic thrillers.
How to Submit: Send queries to cappelloqueries [@] thebentagency.com. Tell Victoria briefly who you are, about your book, and why you’re the one to write it. Include the title of your project in the subject line of your email. Then paste the first ten pages of your book in the body of your email (not as an attachment, please).
Carrie Pestritto joined Prospect Agency in 2011 after working as an assistant at Writers House. With a B.A. in English from Amherst College, she has experienced all sides of the publishing industry, having worked as a ghostwriter, freelance writer, and as an intern in the editorial acquisitions department of the Greenwood Publishing Group.
What she is looking for: “I am looking for thrillers, but am looking for more high-concept thrillers aimed at a female audience rather than police procedurals, etc.”
How to Submit: Upload submission through online submissions page. Do not query by mail or email. Include a synopsis and query letter with your email and contact information at the beginning of the manuscript body (3 chapters or first 30 pages).
Victoria Sanders & Associates)
Bernadette Baker-Baughman has a MS in Professional Writing and has worked on both the editorial and marketing sides of publishing. As the Marketing Coordinator for Beyond Words Publishing/Atria Books, she headed up campaigns for two New York Times best-selling titles. In 2005 Bernadette co-founded Baker’s Mark Literary Agency where she discovered talent such as Farel Dalrymple, Faith Erin Hicks, Paul Guinan & Anina Bennett, Dan Elconin, David Axe, Carson Morton, and Zack Giallongo, among others.
How to Submit: Send a query letter with the first three chapters (or about 25 pages) pasted into the body of the message to queriesvsa [@] gmail.com. Only accepts queries via e-mail. Query letters should describe the project and the author in the body of a single, one-page e-mail that does not contain any attached files.
Rebecca Friedman Literary)
Kimberly is a graduate of both California State University, Northridge and Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. Although she loves all things romance, she is also searching for books that are different and will surprise her, with empathetic characters and compelling stories.
What she is looking for: She seeks mysteries and thrillers for both adult and YA.
How to Submit: Include a query letter, a full synopsis (this should summarize the entire book), and your first chapter (pasted into the email, double spaced). Please submit to Kimberly [@] rfliterary.com.
Michelle Brower began her career in publishing in 2004 while studying for her Master's degree in English Literature at New York University. During that time, she worked with the agents Wendy Sherman and Joelle Delbourgo. After graduating, she became an agent at Wendy Sherman Associates where she began representing books in a variety of areas within fiction and non-fiction.
What she is looking for: “Sub categories I’m looking for are psychological suspense, literary suspense, thrillers with an international bent, and suspense with a touch of the supernatural (but only a touch). Nothing that involves the CIA or terrorism or evil corporations.”
How to Submit: Submit queries through the agency online form.
Veronica Park is an agent, author, journalist and marketing consultant with more than ten years of experience writing and editing for publication. She graduated with a BA in print journalism with an emphasis in linguistics and business marketing from Brigham Young University and went on to expand her writing skills as a broadcast journalist and independent film producer, before running away with her husband to work on cruise ships in the Caribbean as a port lecturer and luxury goods marketing specialist.
What she is looking for: “I’m mostly interested in thrillers with a strong romantic element and/or modern political angle. (Female MCs a plus; not a huge fan of Jason Bourne.)”
How to Submit: Please query Veronica Park by emailing query [@] corvisieroagency.com and putting “Attn: Veronica Park – Query – [BOOK TITLE]” in the subject line. She prefers to see your query letter, synopsis and 15-20 page sample pasted into the body of the email. For bonus points, include links to your social media profiles in your email signature, and a brief description of your writing career goals.
Dystel & Goderich)
Jessica Papin first joined DGLM in 2003, after spending eight years as an editor at Warner Books (now Grand Central). In 2004, she moved to Egypt, where she spent three years working for the American University in Cairo Press. Upon her return to the United States, she rejoined Dystel and Goderich. With a background on both sides of the desk, she loves working collaboratively with clients to shape and refine their work. Her stay in the Middle East has given her an abiding interest in the history and politics of the region, as well as the broader Islamic world.
What she is looking for: She seeks dark, twisty literary thrillers
How to Submit: Query by email to jpapin [@] dystel.com. Paster cover letter in the body of the email. Include a synopsis, outline, sample chapter (one chapter or the first 25 pages of your manuscript) either below the cover letter or attached as a separate document. We won’t open attachments if they come with a blank email.
Aaron M. Priest Literary Agency)
Mitch Hoffman joined the Aaron Priest Literary Agency as a Senior Agent in 2015. A 20-year veteran of the publishing industry, he was most recently Vice-President, Executive Editor at Grand Central Publishing.
How to Submit: Please submit a one page query letter via e-mail. Please do not send attachments. However a first chapter pasted into the body of an e-mail query is acceptable. Send queries to queryhoffman [@] aaronpriest.com.
Evan Gregory is a senior agent at Ethan Ellenberg.
How to Submit: Query by email only to agent [@] ethanellenberg.com. Paste all materials into the body of the email in the order mentioned below: a brief query letter, a synopsis (1-2 pages long), the first 50 pages (approximately) of your manuscript. No attachments.