Query keywords

After a very quick search of certain keywords in my query pile, I have a new set of data for you.

Now, not all of these are exactly what they seem--since it would take a long time to read each one and be sure, keep in mind that some "vampire" hits refer to notes thrown into non-vampire queries--things like, "So, I know it's impossible to sell anything but YA about vampires, but here's my adult nonfiction query..."

If you submitted a request that was  more labor-intensive, that's why it isn't here.

Also note that this data is only for queries in the body of the email; attachments are not searched.

So, for now:

Mentions of the following:

Harry Potter: 73 (13 were just "J.K. Rowling" without mention of title)

Twilight: 111

Eat, Pray, Love: 104

Vampire: 118. Would recommend that you subtract about 15 from this number for aforementioned reasons.

Werewolf: 35. I imagine most people do not use this much except when referring to the moon-inspired beasties.

Angel: hundreds. Seriously hundreds. But keep in mind that one often uses the word "angel" or "angelic" without directly referring to their own work. Some even have the name of Angel, and it pops up, too.

Demon: 113. Subtract a few (probably 10) for writers simply referring to something non-paranormal as "demonic."

Dragon: 98, though a number of these referred to dragon statutes and other dragon objects that were within the story and mattered but did not refer to living, fire-breathing dragons.


Holly Dodson said...

Very interesting indeed. I love hearing about trends in the slush pile. I've heard angels have been really popular lately, but didn't know about demons.

Good stuff Gatekeeper!

Ruth Donnelly said...

Fascinating! I am not sure what to do with this information (other than avoid comparing my work to Twilight, Harry Potter, or Eat, Pray, Love--which I wouldn't do anyway--but it's really interesting! No idea angels/demons were SO big.

Matthew Rush said...

Dragons rule. All that other stuff is cool, but played out.

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

111 Twilights.

Holy bejeezus.

:) said...


Another dragon person.

GK -- thanks for taking the time to do this exercise. Most enlightening.

I don't compare myself to any other writers in a query--you name a big one and it makes you look puffed up. Is there any advantage to comparing to less astronomical books?


ajcastle said...

Hmmm, I am actually pretty proud to say that even though my novel is a paranormal, I don't have a single one of those things in my story or my query! Woot! Go me! LOL!

Watery Tart said...

*wipes brow to have avoided all of these in queries* Very interesting these are the top, though. And I DO have books that refer to people exorcising their 'demons' but they are the psychological kind, and not yet queried... this helps me keep in mind that I should avoid the word...