Query Report 2: Don’t Panic (Yet)

So, it’s been roughly a month since my first query report, and since I said I’d try to do those monthly, I might as well get to it. Plus, there is something to report, so…

  1. Potential Agents Identified: 16 so far, and actually a bit more as some agencies don’t have in-house referrals, meaning if your first contact at that agency isn’t interested, you’re free to query the rest of the agency in due time. I didn’t get much research done in the last month, as I ran out of mental stamina a few days after the first Query Report post.
  2. Query Letters Sent:¬†10. That includes the first six I’d sent prior to the first Report, two more I sent in early December, and the two I sent yesterday. In this case, the low progress was deliberate: I didn’t want my queries to fall into the huge pile agents have to sort through as they come back from vacation.
  3. Rejection Letters Received: 4. I’m trying very hard not to over-analyze those, as they’re more than likely only form letters. Still, one in particular was surprisingly positive. But the fact remain that they’re still rejection, and so I’ve began looking at ways to adapt my basic query to up my success rate.
  4. Ignored Queries:¬†Rapidly approaching 3. Of those, only one is from an agency that doesn’t clearly state their response/no response policy. But it’s been on hold for long enough that I’m calling it dead.
  5. Manuscript Requests: And that’s the good news. One of the agent I contacted requested a partial manuscript. So far, I count this as a 1/8 success rate for queries (the two queries sent yesterday don’t count, obviously. )

So let’s hope for further good news this month!

Query Report: 1 of Hopefully Not Too Many

In commemoration of the receipt of my first official “Not Interested” answer, I figure I can throw some numbers out here, just to illustrate where I currently am in my search for an agent.

  1. Potential Agents Identified: 12 so far. I’m a firm believer that targetting agents who state their interest in the kind of book I wrote (contemporary fantasy, if anyone’s interested) is a lot more likely to lead to a successful query. Plus, it’s basic courtesy not to spam people.
  2. Query Letters Sent: 6. As a corollary to point 1 above, I think each agent deserves something better than a Dear Agent letter. Besides, the submission guidelines change from agency to agency, which means I have to rework each letter anyway. Still, I really need to push those remaining six letters out ASAP.
  3. Rejection Letters Received: 1. That’s not cause for concern yet. At this point, I’m trying really hard not to second-guess myself (and my approach) yet. Some rejections are perfectly normal (and I much prefer getting a formal response than being ignored – see below.)
  4. Ignored Queries:¬†Rapidly approaching 1. The second agent I queried has a “If you don’t hear from me in two weeks, I’m not interested” policy. While I prefer to be told flat out if a particular line is dead, at least this gives me an idea of when to stop hoping. In this case, we’re right on the two-week mark… but I’ll give it a few days more, as the query was sent during Thanksgiving.

So this is where I stand. Obviously, not where I want to be, but this isn’t cause for anxiety yet. I’ll probably write up an update in a month or so.