The Query Letter Content, Non-Fiction
… Strive for brevity and clarity. Make your letters short, well-written, and to the point. Your main objective should be to get your foot in the door and to make the publisher curious enough to ask for more information about your book. The best way to do so is to clearly and professionally communicate the specialness of your book idea in plain, straightforward, easily understood English.
Make sure you’ve researched, so your letter isn’t headed for immediate rejection: “An immediate turnoff is when I receive an inquiry that shows that the writer hasn’t done enough research,” agent Edward Knappman, of New England Publishing Associates, explains. “If I get an inquiry regarding a novel, it’s obvious that they haven’t done enough research to learn that we don’t handle fiction. If they haven’t researched our agency, the first thing I ask is, ‘How can they do enough research for the book?’”