QueryTracker Community
July 16, 2018, 08:35:58 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News:
 
   Home   Help Search Login Register  
Note: This forum uses different usernames and passwords than those of the main QueryTracker site. 
Please register if you want to post messages.

This forum is also accessible by the public (including search engines).
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Four fulls left  (Read 2742 times)
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« on: October 11, 2017, 08:26:19 PM »

I wrote what could be called a literary novel. I sent out 25 queries and received nine requests for a full. So far I've received five rejections, all of which included details about the characters, the novel's good qualities, but finally the agent said he/she 'just didn't fall in love' with the manuscript. First question: what the hell does that mean? (One of the agents had a slightly different response, which I won't discuss here, but all the same they didn't accept my novel.) Now I have four fulls out and two of these are with superstar agents — the two biggest longshots in my query list. One of the four agents is a chronic non-responder to full manuscripts: I think this particular agent responds only to fulls that receive an offer elsewhere. My hopes are slimming. Two agents have had the manuscript for four months, one for three months, and the other for two weeks (an agent at a small outfit). This whole process is very stressful. Thing is, I can get a read at two of the largest publishing houses: I know several senior editors. At what point should I just submit directly? Should I query more agents — is 25 too few for lit fiction?    
« Last Edit: October 11, 2017, 09:32:48 PM by Vathi » Logged
Sarah Ahiers (Falen)
Hero Member
*****

Karma: 792
Offline Offline

Posts: 7890


This, too, shall pass


WWW
« Reply #1 on: October 12, 2017, 07:46:20 AM »

First question: what the hell does that mean?

You know when you read a book and you're like "yeah. I liked this. It was good." And then you put it away. And you know when you read a book and you're like "Holy sh**. I love this book. It's the best book I've read all year."

That second response is what agents are looking for when they offer rep. Your book probably fell more into the first response.

As for how many queries is too many, that's up to you. I used to query 100 agents or until I had another book ready to query (which ended up being about the same amount of time.)

If you have two editors at houses that will read, I say send it to them. If one of them wants to publish it, then you can reach out to an agent you want to rep you and ask if they will because you have a deal on the table.

As long as you're not making it a habit to send to a bunch of editors AND agents at the same time, you're fine.
Logged

Repped by Mollie Glick of CAA
ASSASSIN'S HEART 2016 HarperTeen
I hang out at Sarah Ahiers Writes
Author Website
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2017, 07:40:31 PM »

Thanks for responding, Sarah.
Logged
Sarah Ahiers (Falen)
Hero Member
*****

Karma: 792
Offline Offline

Posts: 7890


This, too, shall pass


WWW
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2017, 07:49:00 AM »

Super good luck!
Logged

Repped by Mollie Glick of CAA
ASSASSIN'S HEART 2016 HarperTeen
I hang out at Sarah Ahiers Writes
Author Website
mgmystery
Hero Member
*****

Karma: 181
Offline Offline

Posts: 844


« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2017, 09:30:25 AM »

If you're really interested in finding an agent, I'd definitely query more. If the feedback you're getting is similar, maybe consider making some of those changes. And keep in mind, it's not uncommon for agents to take several months to respond to fulls and partials. Your stats are good, so there's no real reason to give up. Good luck!
Logged
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2017, 01:08:14 AM »

Thanks, MG. There is no crossover in the comments, beyond 'didn't fall in love'. Two more agents have requested in the past week. Who knows how this will turn out. It would be wonderful if literary agents, and the publishing industry in general, moved a lot faster on manuscripts.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2017, 10:25:00 PM by Vathi » Logged
atwhatcost
Full Member
***

Karma: 4
Offline Offline

Posts: 58


« Reply #6 on: November 14, 2017, 08:51:53 AM »

Thanks, MG. There is no crossover in the comments, beyond 'didn't fall in love'. Two more agents have requested in the past week. Who knows how this will turn out. It would be wonderful if literary agents, and the publishing industry in general, moved a lot faster on manuscripts.
I read your question when you first asked, but had nothing to give you, since, at that time, I didn't even have my first Full yet.

Things I'm thinking about the "problems" you're having:
1. I want to be you.

2. I really want to be you in that I could get that many fulls.

3. I get the delay. I read a lot. And often I have to let a story to sit in my mind for a week to find out if it was just-good or wow! ("I fell in love with it.") The difference sneaks up on me. Wow-books keep me thinking about the characters long afterwards. I want to find out how life is still going for them even after it all settled back down. I want to visit them again, even if it's just stopping by for some coffee. (Well, soda, since I don't like coffee, but I'll bring my own.) And, I can't wait to read it again in the future, after I kind of forget what happened. Those kinds of stories don't come to me that often, but then again, I'm not an agent, so people don't drop them off at my inbox. So, yeah, really. If I were to be an agent, I would have to fall in love with it, otherwise it's just another book. And remember, the agent will be your #1 fan, and is the person who knows who will publish it. Better yet, who else will fall in love.

4. I hope you get a bidding war going on for agents. No idea what a bidding war for agents looks like, but I suspect you will find out. Or, better yet, you get your top Dream Agent, and he/she really is all you dreamed of.

I wasn't checking my email every day to see who requested a full. I've only sent out 20 queries so far, and already hit enough rejects to expect even more rejects. I just got my first full, and yet I know this agent's speed means I will probably find out "I just didn't fall in love" within the next five days. (I made it through the first day without that, so far. lol) I now get how much more anxiety hits when agents have fulls. I suspect you'll be getting the "I love it" before I do. One thing I've learned is each step of this process has whole new levels of fears, doubts, angst and thrills. But each level is one more step toward goal!

Enjoy the ride. This is the path we've chosen, and all the signs say you're on the right path. One day, you'll look back fondly at all this as "the quiet days." Why not enjoy the path while you're on it? Your scenery looks great to me. Smiley
Logged
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2017, 12:18:21 AM »

Thanks, atwhatcost. Your generosity of spirit is what makes these forums so important. I hope you've had some more requests in the past week (or, better still, an offer of represention!). 

At the moment I have five fulls out. The most recent request was one week ago. I'm excited about this new request, at least for the most part. In many ways the agent is a good fit. On the other hand, I came across something he said in an interview — about his general likes and dislikes — that makes me think he won't love the manuscript.

I've nudged my dream agent, as well as another agent who has the manuscript. The dream agent said she'd been reading and enjoying my novel but had to pause because of other work (I won't go into it, but she told me the nature of the work that pulled her away). She said she'd keep reading my ms. And that was a few weeks ago. I won't nudge her again. Was she being honest about having looked at the manuscript already? Who knows. The other (nudged) agent apologised for the wait, and said thanks for staying in touch, and said my novel was on the top of his pile. That was a month back.

I try to get on with other work, but it's slow going.
 
« Last Edit: November 18, 2017, 04:38:51 AM by Vathi » Logged
drose
Full Member
***

Karma: 3
Offline Offline

Posts: 65



« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2017, 01:17:10 PM »

Vathi,

First, good luck with your newest request. I'm in a very similar position with a few fulls out. How long did you wait before nudging and how did you phrase your email? I'm reluctant to nudge but two fulls have been out just shy of six months and I'd like to ask if the agents are still interested since the industry slows down considerably over the winter holidays.

thanks!
Logged
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2017, 01:59:50 AM »

Nudge if you're getting close to six months.

About the contents of the nudge letter: In the first line I asked whether they were still considering the manuscript. Then I linked them to a new publication (a short story), and I mentioned a commission for an essay. With my dream agent I also included two lines about why I think she'd be ideal for the novel I submitted. My nudge emails were short — about four or five sentences. I didn't sweat over every line.
Logged
atwhatcost
Full Member
***

Karma: 4
Offline Offline

Posts: 58


« Reply #10 on: December 03, 2017, 01:34:59 PM »

Something I've read a few times, (not to be confused with experienced.) Agents like to "clear the desk" by the end of the year to prepare for the new year. So everything that has been piling up, (like your MS), gets decided some time in December often.

That way the new year feels like a fresh choice. (Which tells me that's when to query for me more.)
Logged
Vathi
Newbie
*

Karma: 1
Offline Offline

Posts: 8


« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2018, 03:21:02 AM »

This thread has a happy ending. In late December I received an email from an agent who said she loved the book and wanted to arrange a phone call in the new year. The call went well: we clicked and she offered representation, and a few weeks later I signed a contract with the agency. I'm excited about the next step!
« Last Edit: February 17, 2018, 06:53:31 AM by Vathi » Logged
Munley
Hero Member
*****

Karma: 82
Offline Offline

Posts: 291


Mr. Fluff -- from the SPCA


« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2018, 02:17:40 PM »

Congratulations!

 clap clap clap clap
Logged
Pineapplejuice
Sr. Member
****

Karma: 41
Offline Offline

Posts: 191



« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2018, 09:38:22 PM »

This thread has a happy ending. In late December I received an email from an agent who said she loved the book and wanted to arrange a phone call in the new year. The call went well: we clicked and she offered representation, and a few weeks later I signed a contract with the agency. I'm excited about the next step!

Yey Vathi! Have you posted your query in 'Successful Queries' thread?  Grin
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.2 | SMF © 2006-2007, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!