I had to skip two agents: the one who wanted a synopsis, and the next one on the list who wanted a synopsis and 50 pages of double-spaced manuscript by snail mail. But I did send in a query letter (via online submission form). Woo!
Oh, and I looked at my list of query letter submissions, and I haven’t submitted one since 10/19. So it took 4 months to revise my book and do another query letter. Working full-time certainly cuts down on the amount of time I have to spend on my book. But it pays a hell of a lot better.
I probably shouldn’t say this publicly–at least before I get an agent–but why on earth would any agent want to still get unsolicitaed manuscripts by snail mail? It seems so primitive… and time-consuming. It’s so much easier to reply to an e-mail query with a form letter and then delete it. Dumping stuff in a trash can is work–especially if you have to then empty said trash can.
But maybe it separates a little bit of the chaff from the wheat; people who aren’t serious aren’t going to go to the expense and effort to put 50+ pages in the mail. There will still be crap arriving in the mail, but not quite as much crap as will arrive in the e-mail inbox.
Still, I am not up to the point of desperation to snail mail unsolicited partials. If an agent requests a partial via mail, I will run over people to get it in the mail box. And if someone asks for just a query letter by mail, I can spare the 44 cents. But $2.00 and a lot of copying for a high probability of rejection? I’ll keep my money and paper. I can rack up rejections for free!
Oh, the coincidence! As I was finishing up this blog, “Paperback Writer” by the Beatles came on my Pandora radio station.
Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book?
It took me years to write, will you take a look?
It’s based on a novel by a man named Lear
And I need a job, so I want to be a paperback writer,
It’s the dirty story of a dirty man
And his clinging wife doesn’t understand.
The son (The Sun) is working for the Daily Mail,
It’s a steady job but he wants to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer (paperback writer)
It’s a thousand pages, give or take a few,
I’ll be writing more in a week or two.
I can make it longer if you like the style,
I can change it round and I want to be a paperback writer,
If you really like it you can have the rights,
It could make a million for you overnight.
If you must return it, you can send it here
But I need a break and I want to be a paperback writer,