My fourth practice picture book agent query/pitch letter, this one for The Toy That Destroyed Christmas picture book manuscript.

Update: All five literary agent query letters.

The Toy That Destroyed Christmas is the first picture book manuscript Marie and I finished. As I’m sure you can guess from the book title it’s got a Christmas theme :-)

The Toy That Destroyed Christmas Rough Pencil Drawing

The Toy That Destroyed Christmas Rough Pencil Drawing -by Marie Law-

When we wrote it we didn’t know the picture book market had moved on so much regarding word count. The length of picture books have trended down to well below 1,000 words (sweet spot below 500 words apparently), The Toy That Destroyed Christmas has a word count of around 1,400 words, so problematic.

We really enjoyed writing it and you never know where the picture book market will be 5 years from now. We could try to query it as an early reader, but there doesn’t appear to be much interest in early readers right now.

It’s difficult enough trying to get an agent interested without trying to pitch a long Christmas rhyming picture book! Is there anything we could add to that to make it harder to sell let me know?

We aren’t planning to query this manuscript with literary agents at this time, just practicing.

The Toy That Destroyed Christmas PB Query Letter


Email Subject – Query : The Toy that Destroyed Christmas

Dear Mr/Mrs/Ms. Agent Name,

Follow a little boys trip to the Christmas fair in search of that must have Christmas toy. The very special toy that’s from outer space, it flashes, it dashes, it makes a sonic boom, it hovers off the floor, it zooms round the room.

He wants it, he needs it, he must have it quick, so he throws a tantrum in front of Santa and rips his nice red suit! Big mistake messing with Santa, the little boy soon finds that perfect gift isn’t so perfect after all and chaos ensues!

The fair is in ruins, the twinkly lights are all shattered and poor Punch and Judy have been fed to their Croc! The little boys only hope is Santa Claus accepts his heart felt apology, sets the naughty toy back to good and together they save the Christmas fair.

A classic Christmas tale with a simple message that will appeal to parents and children (ages 3-8) who love read aloud rhyming picture books at Christmas.

This is a simultaneous submission, the full 1400 word manuscript is below (link to example illustrations below the MS).

— The Manuscript —
Full manuscript text here…
— end —

Example illustrations for The Toy that Destroyed Christmas at:

URL to private webpage just for agents.
Password: ####

See more examples of Marie’s illustrations at http://md-law.classic-literature.co.uk/art-by-marie-law/

The Toy that Destroyed Christmas is one of five complete PB manuscripts by Marie and David Law.

Although we are looking to build a long term career as an author/illustrator couple, we are flexible with how our manuscripts are published. We wouldn’t have a problem with other illustrators illustrating a project if a publisher is only interested in the manuscript text.

Thank you for your consideration.

Marie and David Law

Contact Details
Address etc… here


No more art yet for this manuscript.

Some of my favorite parts of the story:

“Yes, Yes” said the boy
with a smile on his face,
“There’s a very special toy,
it’s from outer space,
It flashes, it dashes,
it makes a sonic boom,
it hovers off the floor,
it zooms round the room.”

“You kicked, you screamed,
you tore my nice red suit,
you got what you wanted
by being a little brute.”

Santa rolled up his sleeves,
flipped the toy upside down,
he looked at the toy
with a worrying frown.

“It’s been set to naughty
instead of being good,
it will need an adjustment
under the hood.”

Some really nice rhyme in the story, we think it would be a joy to read to kids at Christmas.

David Law

Literary Agent Query Letters