September 24th, 2010


letters from the query wars 9/24/2010

# of queries responded to this week: 257
# of partials/manuscripts requested: 1
genre of partials/manuscripts requested: YA paranormal

oldest query in the queue: Sept 4

A few random things that struck me as ironic this week....

* Queries that request no reply unless interested because it bogs up the sender's email-- included in multiple queries for multiple works. And, of note, since many writers around the blogosphere hate/despise/otherwise denigrate "no response means no" policies.

* A terse follow-up about how it's been 3 weeks since a query was sent but there has not been the courtesy of a reply... when the listed response time for the agent is 4 weeks.

* Queries that indicate the sender would very much like to submit a sample of their work when the query doesn't include the first five pages as indicated in our submission guidelines. Irritated replies to same asking how a work can be evaluated without reading any of it. (It's a fair point so it's why I ask for the five pages.)

* Letters with no name in either the sender field or any of the text but wanting a personal reply. (So I'm stuck with Dear ihatekittens at yourISP dot com)

* Queries complaining about how mercenary and awful agents are while soliciting representation for new novel. Similarly, queries offering to pay fees or higher commission rates.

* Anything that includes the phrase: "I know you're extremely busy, but...." or some variation on that theme.

* Not being able to go back in time to tell my younger self who had such a ridiculously limited book budget that a day would come when I would be torn about which manuscript to read and critique on the weekend and that the 700+ books in the TBR pile would have to wait.

Happy weekend....