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Content Warning For Queries
Did you know that content warnings are a must in your queries?
What is a Content Warning?
A content warning is just that… you are warning the potential reader (in this case, the agent) that your manuscript may contain some sensitive trigger points, such as (but not limited to):
Death of a child
Violence of any kind
Abuse (sexual or other)
Killing or murder
Use of guns
Put the content warning inside your query letter, like this:
Content Warning: This manuscript includes the death of a child, references to sexual abuse, and mild violence.”
I’ve started to see content warnings inside published books on the front pages, which is becoming more of a common practice.
Why Content Warnings?
Well, let’s say an agent has experienced the death of a child. Giving them this warning ahead of time gives them the chance to either prepare themselves, pass the manuscript to someone else to read, or even reject it.
It is just plain courtesy.
I give content warnings to anyone that is about to read my manuscript (beta readers, editors, or family).