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Author Topic: Climate change on querying questions  (Read 2211 times)
atwhatcost
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« on: August 05, 2017, 11:09:50 PM »

When I started the project I was worried on how to afford that many print outs of my novel to send to agents.

Did I get a giggle? Good, that was the plan.

But I may still be have old school filling my thoughts. One is that I'm supposed to send out 10 queries at a time, and wait two weeks for answers. Now most agents don't even send rejects, and don't get back to writers for anywhere between immediately and 2 years. Well, that first batch done in two weeks is supposed to tell me if my query is any good. See the problem? If most won't answer in two weeks, how am I supposed to know if it is any good?

What's the new way of doing it?
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Hairaplenty
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« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2017, 01:29:56 AM »

It is tough! No doubt about it. Most houses will let you know what their response time is. Anywhere from two weeks to four to six, to eight. When you read the submissions at each house, make note of that and then keep track. If you haven't heard back within their response time guidelines, they're not interested. Some do ask for you to nudge, or re-query. As far as knowing if your query is any good, get fellow writers to critique your query so you can query, with at least some confidence.  Cry   You can ask for critique on this forum.
I start with ten or so, and wait. If you get a nibble, something must be working. If not, I'll load out a few more and check my query, again!
Best of luck. I've been at this a long time, as well. Like, back when we used stamps!   wink2
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Tabris
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« Reply #2 on: August 06, 2017, 08:49:50 AM »

I'm not sure if there's a "new way" of doing it necessarily. Make sure you check the reply times on QueryTracker so your first batch has a mix of agents who reply soon versus ones who don't. If you see an agent typically makes requests within two weeks and doesn't send rejections, after two weeks assume it's a rejection.
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atwhatcost
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« Reply #3 on: August 06, 2017, 11:04:56 AM »

Yikes! I should have asked when I was on Page One (of Eight) for researching agents. I'm at the bottom of page 7 now, and have to backtrack to see how long the wait is for 84 agents who made my list!  embarrassed

Which brings me to next question... how often do they update their submissions page? Because part of my research is checking AW's forums, which tend to tell me how they were 2-14 years ago.
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gckatz
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« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2017, 03:22:39 PM »

I don't know about the rest of you, but I use a magic 8 ball.

"Is my query working?"
"Reply hazy try again"
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Tabris
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« Reply #5 on: August 06, 2017, 04:25:26 PM »

Yikes! I should have asked when I was on Page One (of Eight) for researching agents. I'm at the bottom of page 7 now, and have to backtrack to see how long the wait is for 84 agents who made my list!  embarrassed


Not necessarily. When you pick out the first bunch you want to query, make note then of how long they should generally respond by. If you notice they're all in the three month zone, deselect a few and then go back to the group and look at a few more.

Most of the first round aren't in "dream agent" category anyhow, no? Becauseyou want to make sure the query works before you contact those folks. So you have plenty of flexibility with the first round.
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mgmystery
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« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2017, 07:34:30 AM »

Lol, Gckatz, now I need a magic 8 ball!
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atwhatcost
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« Reply #7 on: August 07, 2017, 04:40:45 PM »

I don't know about the rest of you, but I use a magic 8 ball.

"Is my query working?"
"Reply hazy try again"
I must have bought the wrong Crazy Eight Ball. Mine keeps saying, "Crossing I-95 in rush-hour traffic is easier and safer than this."
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atwhatcost
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« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2017, 04:42:43 PM »

Yikes! I should have asked when I was on Page One (of Eight) for researching agents. I'm at the bottom of page 7 now, and have to backtrack to see how long the wait is for 84 agents who made my list!  embarrassed


Not necessarily. When you pick out the first bunch you want to query, make note then of how long they should generally respond by. If you notice they're all in the three month zone, deselect a few and then go back to the group and look at a few more.

Most of the first round aren't in "dream agent" category anyhow, no? Becauseyou want to make sure the query works before you contact those folks. So you have plenty of flexibility with the first round.
My second biggest fear is someone wants to rep me before I have time to hit my Dream Agent list.

My biggest fear is no one wants to rep me even with a great query and synopsis.  embarrassed
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Tabris
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« Reply #9 on: August 07, 2017, 07:30:59 PM »


My second biggest fear is someone wants to rep me before I have time to hit my Dream Agent list.

My biggest fear is no one wants to rep me even with a great query and synopsis.  embarrassed

The second biggest fear you can do something about. It is VERY highly unlikely that an agent will request your full and read it so quickly that you don't have time to send another query to your dream agent.

Once you start getting full requests, submit then to all your top-tier agents. If you get an offer, then you can nudge them with "offer of representation" and they have the chance to take a look before you decide.
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Sarah Ahiers (Falen)
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« Reply #10 on: August 08, 2017, 08:57:42 AM »

My second biggest fear is someone wants to rep me before I have time to hit my Dream Agent list.

My biggest fear is no one wants to rep me even with a great query and synopsis.  embarrassed

Listen, if you send out a query to a B lister, and you get an immediate offer, real quick send out a query or two to your "dream" agents. Then give it 24 hours and nudge with the offer.

Chances are slim that it would even happen, but that's what I did when I got an offer the same day someone really high on my list opened for queries. Granted, I sent the query before the phone call, but I was pretty darn sure it was going to be an offer since it was our second call.

But, again, query replies are so slow nowadays, it's even more rare for that to happen.

Once you get a request or two, then you know your query is working and you can query the big names on your list.
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atwhatcost
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« Reply #11 on: August 08, 2017, 02:16:28 PM »

Doh!

I've had 2 in one hand and 2 in the other, but never put 2 and 2 together.

The most common question on AW's agency threads is, "How long before they get back to me about my query?" (Standard answer: "If you haven't heard anything in three months, gently nudge.")

The second most common question is, "How long do I give them for my full?" (Standard answer: "If you haven't heard anything in six months, gently nudge.")

You'd think I'd catch on that I have time when a partial or full gets into someone's hands.  Roll Eyes

Thanks! A little slow on the uptake, but getting there.
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gushags16
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« Reply #12 on: August 08, 2017, 03:39:44 PM »

You can always query some of QueryTracker's Top 10 fastest responders. That will help give you an idea.

Link is here: https://querytracker.net/top10fastest.php
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