Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Resending Queries

This may sound like an unprofessional and very likely stupid question, but I had to make certain before giving up entirely: I was wondering whether it was alright to send a revised query letter to your agency when the first has not been replied to yet? I know that the query letter you send should have been edited and revised until it was polished but I just have to ask.

Hey, we all make mistakes. In fact, just recently I sent an email out to an editor, querying a book, with a major grammatical error in the subject heading. It happens. I don't think the editor judged me or the submission any less.

You must have caught me on one of those days because I'm of two minds on this. First of all, yes, I would rather the query be right the first time, but as everyone knows sometimes it takes a few days or months and a few rejections before you realize it isn't right. And in the end I think I would rather not miss out on an opportunity than have one less query in my inbox. But do you send it while still waiting for an answer? That does feel like it's mucking up my inbox to me. People do it all the time though.

The truth is that unless I happen to read the queries in backward order and notice that you've sent the revised and asked me to delete the original, I will probably just end up reading them both and wonder if they were both sent accidentally or on purpose.

So here's what I'm going to say: Just send the revised one whenever you want to.



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Carolynnwith2Ns said...

What a perfect question.

Rereading my query letters has become, in some instances, embarrassing.

One agent replied, “...your query is a little more than confusing.”
When I reread it, I even found it confusing, and I wrote the damn thing. Based on the query I couldn’t tell you what the book is about.

It’s like getting dressed for the prom. Convinced you look perfect, you feel excited and off you go. In the prom pictures: why didn’t anybody tell me my butt looked huge and my hair was lumpy? What was I thinking? Oh wait, I wasn’t thinking, I was dreaming. Slow down...turn around...view from another angle...okay...time to go. Problem is, the prom is over and my one shot to make a grand entrance has passed. Well, there’s always next year, because school is never out.

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Lillie McFerrin said...
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Lillie McFerrin said...

Thank you for the post. Great information that anyone in the query process can use.


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Barbara Franzen said...
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Barbara Franzen said...

I do mensa puzzles
Yours is harder to fugure out than theirs. If you send a query for this-I'm certain it will be accepted and published. I'll be watching for it..Gabbi

Barbara Franzen said...

I just reread what I wrote. It came out rather cleverly. What I meant was that I would be watching for this as a puzzle-