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Old 07-10-2014, 03:48 AM
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Default Query Letter and Synopsis


Hello,

I have written my script and polished it up, got it copyrighted and now I am ready to make contact with agents and studios.

So I have written my own query letter and synopsis, however, I have never done this before as I had to do my research on the web. So I was hoping if there is anyone who has experience in dealing with query letters and synopsis before in being able to give me feedback on what they think of my query letter and synopsis? Any feedback will be really helpful and greatly appreciated.

Btw, I have not included the line where I need to mention why I chose a particular agent or studio as I haven't selected one yet.

Fragments of a Broken Heart - Query Letter:

How do you expect children to live through life after the loss of the most important beings in their lives, their parents?

Date
Executive's name
Executive's title
Company name
Address of company
Dear Mr. or Ms. Executive:

My name is Mayur Patel and I like to have the opportunity to submit to you a powerful, inspiring, tragic-drama titled “Fragments of a Broken Heart” for your consideration. I am approaching your agency as I believe … (reasons for why I chose this agency).

A traditional animation feature-length that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister must endure after the death of their parents during a devastating tsunami.

The fictional town of Sonoko is destroyed by a vigorous tsunami. Haruto (15), eldest son of the Yamamoto family, searches the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. However, his fear becomes reality when first he finds his injured mother, who dies in his arms and later on despite discovering his younger sister Miyu (10) alive, he notices behind her their lifeless father, leaving the two siblings all on their own. After being rescued and treated, they are both taken to an orphanage that is run by Akari Tanaka (35). Despite a tough beginning, both siblings manage to slowly adapt to their life and new surroundings, especially with the help of Akari’s adopted daughter Keiko (10) and the head child of the orphanage Ryusei “Ryu” Sato (15). However, complications arise when a couple, Kenji (28) and Nanami (27) Fujiwara wish to adopt solely Miyu. Reluctant at first, Haruto finally decides to let Miyu go on the basis that she can gain a better life. However, when Miyu learns of her adoption, she becomes saddened and is determined to stay with her brother; instead Fujiwaras manage to drag her away from Haruto. Miyu become angered with Haruto over the phone for abandoning her and wishes not to see or speak to him again. The situation worsens when Haruto discovers that Miyu is leaving the country due to a job opportunity for her adoptive father. Haruto desperately tries to reach Miyu and stop her from leaving, but is too late. Is the bond between both these siblings lost forever?

I am a master graduate in Database Programming, before switching to encounter my lifelong ambition of becoming a screenwriter. I have learned my craft through self-learning and have gained valuable skills thanks to various screenwriting books, seminars and advice from professional people in film including animation writer Jeffrey Scott and anime and film director Michael Arias.

I believe this unique, gripping and compelling story in addition to the dynamic characters involved will appeal to a worldwide audience. Thank you very much for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

(My Details)



Fragments of a Broken Heart - One page Synopsis:

A tsunami destroys the small provincial town of Sonoko. HARUTO (15), eldest son of the Yamamoto family, searches the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. He finds his injured mother who dies in his arms. Later on during a cold night whilst carrying his lifeless mother, he finds his depressed younger sister MIYU (10), as he also discovers behind her their deceased father, leaving Haruto and Miyu with no living parents.

After being saved by a team of rescuers and being treated in a hospital, Haruto and Miyu are taken to an orphanage which is run by AKARI TANAKA (35). After a tough start, especially for a pensive Miyu, they both manage to slowly adapt to their new surroundings thanks to the company of Akari’s adopted daughter KEIKO (10) and the head child of the orphanage RYUSEI “RYU” SATO (15).

However, complication arises when a couple, KENJI (28) and NANAMI (27) FUJIWARA show interest in adopting Miyu alone. Though Haruto is angered and reluctant at first to accept their offer, through the advice and opinions given to him by Akari and Ryu, Haruto agrees for the Fujiwaras to adopt Miyu. This decision saddens Miyu, as she wants to stay with her brother, forcing her to be dragged away by the Fujiwaras as Haruto turns his back to Miyu, unbeknown to her that he is heartbroken.

When Haruto tries to contact Miyu, she becomes angry with him for letting her go and does not want to see or speak to him again. After their communication, Haruto becomes enraged, until Ryu calms him down and reminds him that he did this to give Miyu a better life.

Months later, Haruto receives a call from Kenji that they are leaving the country due to a job opportunity and Miyu will be going to. Desperate to not lose Miyu, Haruto attempts to take back Miyu. However, he is too late. Grief-stricken, Haruto finds a sharp rock and attempts to slit his wrist, but before reaching the vein, he remembers the reason for why he gave Miyu away, causing him to stop.

18 months pass as Haruto receives information that the people who have been sponsoring him would like to invite him to their home in England for a two week holiday. Haruto agrees to go. On the plane he is shocked to see Miyu is also coming to England. However, she is still angry with Haruto.


Haruto and Miyu are greeted by AKEMI (36) and CHASE (35) RICHARDSON and are later introduced to their impolite and disrespectful daughter LAURA (14). Miyu begins to spend time with Laura and not Haruto, believing in Laura’s theory of hating family. After some time, Haruto encounters Miyu on how he feels of her behaviour towards him, causing a major disagreement between them. After Akemi consoles Miyu and Chase inform Haruto separately about the importance of family, the two siblings manage to sympathize and reconnect with each other. Even Laura learns an important lesson about family.

At the end, Haruto and Miyu are in the plane, knowing soon they will be going their separate ways but realizing their bond remains. They both hold hands whilst asleep in the plane, with their given wristbands displaying the phrase “TOGETHER FOREVER”.

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Old 07-10-2014, 03:02 PM
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How do you expect children to live through life after the loss of the most important beings in their lives, their parents?

You've got "live", "life" and "lives" in the same sentence. It's vital to get this one strap line absolutely perfect.
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Old 07-10-2014, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
How do you expect children to live through life after the loss of the most important beings in their lives, their parents?

You've got "live", "life" and "lives" in the same sentence. It's vital to get this one strap line absolutely perfect.
Thanks for that tip, that's a good point you made. How about:

How do you expect children to manage through life after the loss of the most important people during their existence, their parents?
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Old 07-10-2014, 04:45 PM
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Why not:

How can children cope when their parents are killed in a tsunami?

You're trying to make that strap line shorter and punchier.
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Old 07-11-2014, 01:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Non Serviam View Post
Why not:

How can children cope when their parents are killed in a tsunami?

You're trying to make that strap line shorter and punchier.
That does seem a lot better, thanks for that info about strap lines, I will know for future reference.

What do you think of rest of query letter and synopsis?
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Old 07-11-2014, 03:29 AM
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Hi. I'll just look at the query letter first.

It needs to tease the reader, which means you keep it short, sweet, but offer enough to offer a tease.

Originally Posted by mmkp1990 View Post

How do you expect children to live through life after the loss of the most important beings in their lives, their parents?
Is this part of the query letter?

Date
Executive's name
Executive's title
Company name
Address of company
Dear Mr. or Ms. Executive:

My name is Mayur Patel and I like to have the opportunity to submit to you a powerful, inspiring, tragic-drama titled (this is stating the obviousm as this is being sent to an agent on submissions, it's obvious why you're sending it, ) “Fragments of a Broken Heart” for your consideration. I am approaching your agency as I believe … (reasons for why I chose this agency).

A traditional animation feature-length that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister must endure after the death of their parents during a devastating tsunami. (I'd blend this with the intro)

The fictional town of Sonoko is destroyed by a vigorous tsunami. Haruto (15), (and) eldest son of the Yamamoto family, (is left) searches the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. However, his fear becomes reality Wwhen first he finds (his sister ten year-old sister, Miyu, under the bodies of both his mother and father) his injured mother, who dies in his arms and later on despite discovering his younger sister Miyu (10) alive, he notices behind her their lifeless father, (Yamamoto is) leftving (to bring up his sister, alone, underthreat of both being placed in an orphanage.) the two siblings all on their own. After being rescued and treated, they are both taken to an orphanage that is run by Akari Tanaka (35). Despite a tough beginning, both siblings manage to slowly adapt to their life and new surroundings, especially with the help of Akari’s adopted daughter Keiko (10) and the head child of the orphanage Ryusei “Ryu” Sato (15). However, complications arise w Yet When a couple, Kenji (28) and Nanami (27) Fujiwara wish to adopt solely Miyu, Yamamoto's throw into the posibility of facing life alone.[S]

Reluctant at first, Haruto finally decides to let Miyu go on the basis that she can gain a better life. However, when Miyu learns of her adoption, she becomes saddened and is determined to stay with her brother; instead Fujiwaras manage to drag her away from Haruto. Miyu become angered with Haruto over the phone for abandoning her and wishes not to see or speak to him again. The situation worsens when Haruto discovers that Miyu is leaving the country due to a job opportunity for her adoptive father. Haruto desperately tries to reach Miyu and stop her from leaving, but is too late. Is the bond between both these siblings lost forever?


I am a master graduate in Database Programming, before switching to encounter my lifelong ambition of becoming a screenwriter. I have learned my craft through self-learning and have gained valuable skills thanks to various screenwriting books, seminars and advice from professional people in film including animation writer Jeffrey Scott and anime and film director Michael Arias.

I believe this unique, gripping and compelling story in addition to the dynamic characters involved will appeal to a worldwide audience. Thank you very much for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

(My Details)
Rewrite suggestions (and they really are just that.

My name is Mayur Patel. “Fragments of a Broken Heart” ia a traditional animation feature-length (what?) that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister during the aftermath of a Tsunai.

The town of Sonoko is destroyed by a tsunami, and eldest son of the Yamamoto family (Give him a name) is left to search the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. When (insert name)finds his sister ten year-old sister, Miyu, under the bodies of both his mother and father, (insert name here) is left to bring up his sister, alone and under threat of them both being placed in an orphanage. As (insert name here's) orphanage fears are realised, and a couple come to tear him and his sister apart, *insert name here here* is forced too battle his darkest demon: by letting Miyu find security with another family, he'll spend the rest of his childhood alone. And being alone is (what to this kid? how much does he fear it)

But general, the query letter is about conflict and how it tests the MC. It's not about a full decsription. So try and show this kid's inner battle over self-preservation etc.

I don't know the story, I can't say exactly what happens, so it's only ever a rough guide. Hope it helps. It still looks too long for me up there, and would need a few edits to refine.
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Last edited by Whiskers; 07-11-2014 at 04:02 AM..
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Old 07-11-2014, 06:14 AM
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Thank you for your thoughts whiskers. Pretty cool btw, how you can cross out my previous text to show how to rewrite it.

Anyway, your version looks a lot better than mine, and your explanation does help me in knowing that the query letter is a teaser and the synopsis is the description, followed by the script which is the whole story.

I am just going to be a little busy next couple of hours, but I will rewrite the query letter thanks to your suggestions and post the re-written version. I think my next attempt will be much better thanks to your feedback
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Old 07-11-2014, 12:15 PM
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Ok here we go, after the kind feedback given, this is the second attempt of the query letter, this is the shortest I have managed to get it which in my opinion still gives enough info to make the agent/studio interested, yet short enough to tease them to want to read more:



How can children cope when their parents a killed in a tsunami?

Date
Executive's name
Executive's title
Company name
Address of company

Dear Mr. or Ms. Executive:

My name is Mayur Patel and I have a story titled “Fragments of a Broken Heart”, a traditional animation feature-length that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister must endure after the death of their parents during a devastating tsunami. I am approaching your agency as I believe … (reasons for why I chose this agency).

The town of Sonoko is destroyed by a tsunami, and eldest son of the Yamamoto family, Haruto (15), is left to search the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. However, his fear becomes reality as he first finds his injured mother, who dies in his arms and later in the day after discovering his younger sister. Miyu (10), alive, he notices behind her their lifeless father, leaving Haruto to solely take care of Miyu and being taken to an orphanage after rescue.

Despite a tough beginning, both siblings manage to slowly adapt to life in the orphanage, until complications arises when a couple threaten to tear them apart, Kenji (28) and Nanami (27) Fujiwara. Haruto is forced to battle his darkest demon: by letting Miyu find security with another family, he loses the only family he has left. Despite letting Miyu go for the best intentions, Miyu despises Haruto, which causes their bond to break apart. Is the relationship between both these siblings lost forever?

I am a master graduate in Database Programming, before switching to encounter my lifelong ambition of becoming a screenwriter. I have learned my craft through self-learning and have gained valuable skills thanks to various screenwriting books, seminars and advice from professional people in film including animation writer Jeffrey Scott and anime and film director Michael Arias.

I believe this unique, gripping and compelling story in addition to the dynamic characters involved will appeal to a worldwide audience. Thank you very much for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Sincerely,

(my details)
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Old 07-13-2014, 05:44 PM
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How can children cope when their parents a killed in a tsunami?
I favor changing this. It's just not grabbing me right.

Something like: Will two children be able to cope with the death of their parents?

This hits harder for me and then you explain in your synopsis.
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Old 07-13-2014, 06:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Bagit View Post
I favor changing this. It's just not grabbing me right.

Something like: Will two children be able to cope with the death of their parents?

This hits harder for me and then you explain in your synopsis.
Can two young siblings cope after the death of their parents?

Thanks for suggestion. Just thinking which one do you prefer between your suggestion and this possible suggestion I posted?
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Old 07-13-2014, 06:36 PM
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That'll work too!

Edit: I'd cut out "young" perhaps. You give their age in the synopsis.
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Last edited by Bagit; 07-13-2014 at 06:42 PM..
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Old 07-13-2014, 10:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Bagit View Post
That'll work too!

Edit: I'd cut out "young" perhaps. You give their age in the synopsis.
Cool, will do. So other than that is the query letter and synopsis ok to you?
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Old 07-14-2014, 11:57 AM
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Actually I do think your synopsis should be harder hitting also.

My name is Mayur Patel and I have a story titled “Fragments of a Broken Heart”, a traditional animation feature-length that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister must endure after the death of their parents during a devastating tsunami. [I am approaching your agency as I believe …] I'd strike this, but if you use it, it may need to be combined with "My name is Mayur Patel and I am approaching . . . ." (reasons for why I chose this agency).
This paragraph to me is a mini-synopsis.

I think you need the next two paragraphs shortened and with not so much of the "who's" and "why's" and more of the "what's". The children's name's and age's are fine, but I'd strike the age's of adopter's. There just seems to be too much description going on here. Look at your first paragraph and try a redo following the form of it laced with quicker description.
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Old 07-14-2014, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Bagit View Post
Actually I do think your synopsis should be harder hitting also.

This paragraph to me is a mini-synopsis.

I think you need the next two paragraphs shortened and with not so much of the "who's" and "why's" and more of the "what's". The children's name's and age's are fine, but I'd strike the age's of adopter's. There just seems to be too much description going on here. Look at your first paragraph and try a redo following the form of it laced with quicker description.
Thanks for advice, I have managed to shorten the query letter (I'm assuming that is the one you are referring to, even though you keep saying synopsis) based on your helpful feedback. It now reads:



How children cope after the death of their parents?

Date
Executive's name
Executive's title
Company name
Address of company
Dear Mr. or Ms. Executive:

My name is Mayur Patel and I am approaching your agency as … (reasons for why I chose this agency.) I have a story titled “Fragments of a Broken Heart”, a traditional animation feature-length that focuses on the survival, consequences and hardships a young brother and sister must endure after the death of their parents during a devastating tsunami.).

The town of Sonoko is destroyed by a tsunami, and eldest son of the Yamamoto family, Haruto (15), is left to search the strewn wreckage for the rest of his family. However, despite finding his younger sister Miyu (10) alive, their mother and father are dead, leaving Haruto to solely take care of Miyu, before being taken to an orphanage after rescue.

Despite a tough beginning, both siblings manage to slowly adapt to life in the orphanage, until complications arise when a couple threaten to tear them apart. Haruto is forced to battle his darkest demon: by letting Miyu find security with another family, he loses the only family he has left. Despite letting Miyu go for the best intentions, Miyu despises Haruto, causing their bond to break apart. Is the relationship between both these siblings lost forever?

I am a master graduate in Database Programming, before switching to encounter my lifelong ambition of becoming a screenwriter. I have learned my craft through self-learning and have gained valuable skills thanks to various screenwriting books, seminars and advice from professional people in film including animation writer Jeffrey Scott and anime and film director Michael Arias.

I believe this unique, gripping and compelling story in addition to the dynamic characters involved will appeal to a worldwide audience. Thank you very much for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,
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Old 07-15-2014, 02:41 PM
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Much better. Hope you knock them out with the story!

Oh . . .
How children cope after the death of their parents?
Make sure you get this right. "How will two children cope after the death of their parents." Essentially you're not asking a question here, but a statement from the author. That's the way I see it, anyway. I guess a question mark would be okay too.

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Last edited by Bagit; 07-15-2014 at 02:55 PM..
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