Dorothy Thompson, Pump Up Your Book Promotions diva, blogged about a terribly generic query she received in her Inbox. (Read it here)
In several blog posts, group discussions, telephone calls and Tweets I've discussed the appropriate way to approach people.
Address them by name when you are able.
Unless they have a strict rulebook posted online, most editors, publicists, publishers and others in the field will accept a short, well-written query with no misspellings.
As a virtual book tour host, I don't expect a novel – just enough to peak my interest in an author.
Here is an example of how you can approach someone in a professional manner:
I would like to be considered for a virtual book tour stop at Book Addict, Pop Syndicate's book blog.
My novel, Urban Fantasy Rocks, hits bookstores in two months. It is nonfiction novel of the best urban fantasy novels past and present. Additional information is available at my Web site, www.urbanfantasyrocks.com.
Please contact me at your convenience if you are interesting and what dates are open.
Thanks so much for your time.
U.F. Rocks, author
Most online folks are not this formal, but you just never know who will open that email first. Error on the side of caution. You want to make a good first impression – the same as you want your manuscript to make when it lands in the hands of an editor.
If you do not know the name of the person you need to reach, simply say so in the e-mail. It can be something as simple as: "I apologize if I missed this on your Web site, but I'm trying to reach the person who schedules your virtual book tours."
As always, SPELL CHECK your submission before you send, or ask a friend to read it over if you are super nervous as you type.0