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Queries and Agents => Literary Agents => Topic started by: Alniah on December 17, 2011, 03:49:22 PM

Title: What is a good request rate?
Post by: Alniah on December 17, 2011, 03:49:22 PM
I know that it only takes one but I'm just curious. What is a good request rate as far as queries are concerned? When should one revise said query? I thought I read somewhere like 10% is good?
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: Kimmy on December 17, 2011, 05:17:37 PM
I think a hundred percent request rate is good (in my dreams!!!) but I have had about 10-15% with both my YA books. Zero from the query for my MG but won a few contests with said query, so not sure what to consider that!
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: edelweiss on December 17, 2011, 07:39:07 PM
It depends a little on how you do the accounting. If you count no response (after a few months) as a no, then my request rate was 22%. If you only count no response as a no only when they say that no response in X time is a no, then it was 32%. I had a request after a no response is a no that was out seven months!

Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: B on December 17, 2011, 10:49:42 PM
I remember there was a big to-do over an author saying anything below 25% was not a good query. Above there's a good example (about having won contests with it or getting queries from it being posted online) of why numbers aren't hard and fast indicators. Subjectivity isn't just in the book, it's also in the query stage. That said, if I sent out 5-7 queries and didn't get a request (and I'd just started using it), I'd try another variation. I've been known to do that, even when I am getting positive results. What works for one agent might not work for the other.
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: lovinlife83 on December 18, 2011, 11:56:54 AM
The numbers really depend on other things like...

(Do you have premium membership? Do you look that the reports?) If you look at each agent and see how often they request, it tells you a lot. Like if you get a request from an agent who hasn't requested in like...forever, then no biggie, I say. But if you're not getting any requests from the agents who rep your genre and request often, then there may be a problem. And if you get a request from an agent who rarely requests, then how awesome is that?

Let's say you queried 10 agents and got all "no thank you" responses. Then you looked them up and they are all agents who haven't been requesting hardly anything at all. That says a lot more than if you looked up said agents and they all requested at a 10-20% rate. Make sense?

Good luck, Alniah! Luv ya!  ;D
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: ClaudeDancourt on December 18, 2011, 05:36:08 PM
Melinda is right. I personally also look at the submission rate. It's great to have a request from an agent which request rate is above 25%, but if the named agent reject 95% of submitted material afterward...  :crazy:

Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: bodwen on December 18, 2011, 06:49:28 PM
Last I checked 20% was good, 25%+ was great, and 10%+ meant that the query was doing its job. 

But it's also important that the query match the manuscript.  You can have the best query letter in the world, but if it doesn't reflect the writing and the story, you'll just end up with a lot of partial requests.
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: Duff on December 19, 2011, 06:15:51 AM
I agree on the variables. For instance, if sample pages are attached and you're getting requests from those or not, what genre you're writing in (based on word count and agents' desire for or recent success with that genre).

I also read that 10% meant the query was effective. It seems most of those who got offers here were at 15% or more if I remember correctly.

But if your partial doesn't live up to your query, you get where I was for a while (hinting that I needed a revision). Obviously the foot in the door is key, but the upgrade to full is the full step in).
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: Alniah on January 03, 2012, 10:28:46 AM
Karma to all for your answers.
So I am wondering what to do. Right now, I have 3 partials and 1 full out (received 2 Rs on partials already) and I stopped querying about 3 weeks ago but I am itching to start again. Should I wait for the answers to those subs? Query wildly?
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: angikelly on January 03, 2012, 11:15:38 AM
Alniah,

Hi! I'm in a similar situation. I've got partial/fulls out with several agents and since it could take a while to hear back, I plan to keep querying widely. I took a break for the holidays but now I'm jumping back into the trenches. LOL!
Title: Re: What is a good request rate?
Post by: rewrighter on January 03, 2012, 11:25:49 AM
I didn't stop querying until I had 8 fulls out and two partials. I got nervous w/ so much out - turns out I was right but only bc my offer came the final work day before the holiday break. Waiting for everyone to return to work has definitely slowed my decision making process.
 Since we have a nice six months until people go on mass vacations again, you should be good to query widely.
Good luck!!