Monday, August 31, 2009

The Score 10 Days In

It's only been 10 days since I started querying -- I dumped 18 e-queries into cyberspace on August 21 -- and since that was a Friday evening, effectively it's only been a week. Still, it feels like a 100 years.

Things started well. The very next morning an agent asked for the first 50 pages! Visions of sugar plums started to dance in my head. Maybe this won't be so hard after all, I thought. I'll have to decide between two, three, ten agents! I'd have to lie because so many people would be asking for an exclusive look at my full ms. -- "Sorry, there's three copies of it out there already."

Of course, in the back of my head was a little voice telling me to get real. A little dose of reality came in on Monday with a couple of rejections. A few more followed. Over the weekend I was asked for the first chapter and then turned down because of it. (More on that in a later post.)

So, back to the old stalwarts -- John Grisham was turned away by eight agents! Fourteen agents said no to J.K. Rowling -- and every publisher in London!

Mostly, though, the killer has been the waiting. Is my query working? Will other agents have the same problem with the first chapter? Is my new query, used on the subsequent 12 of my 30 queries overall, better than the first? Should I have waited and re-written the query before I sent out those first 18?

Jesus, one gets consumed by doubt.

And why the fuck is it taking everyone so long to get back to me? Or is their not getting back simply a rejection by non-response, for which so many agents are famous? Haven't they worked through their backlog and gotten to me, yet? Is there any hope at all that I might know if I have any future as a writer by Christmas?

(Yes, I know it's only been a week. No one said I had to be rational about this journey.)

The score as of today: Queries sent - 30. Partials requested - 2. Rejections - 6.

1 comment:

  1. Right on! What's an aspiring writer supposed to do with all of the time and anticipation between query and response? I have high hopes the moment I send out a query but the longer it takes for a response, the more my hope dwindles. That sucks big balls and it's sapped the fun out of writing.

    Then there's the conflicting information via the web that leaves me wondering how in hell can I get it right. Blogs say: "Say this in your query.. don't say that... be sure to add this, but if it's that don't mention it unless it's like this..." WTF?!!!

    Point is--I understand your frustration.

    Good luck! God willing, we'll get that agent and subsequent book deal. (And then we'll laugh at our melancholy.)

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