When It’s Just Not Happening
So, you’ve figured out how to write a query that pricks an agent’s interest. How do you know this?
Before this point, it’s fairly easy to figure out problems that might be preventing agents from reading your manuscript. And you can tweak your query or your first 250 words and throw the line back out.Partial requests have you feeling hopeful! Full requests keep you up at night, for awhile…
But this is the point where querying becomes the hardest.Since I began querying, I’ve received around twenty requests for full manuscripts. And twenty times I kept hoping that someone would come back with a positive response.
And a few of them did – giving me positive or negative feedback.
One even offered to do a revise and resubmit. Twice!And yet, I am still un-agented.
Does that mean my work stinks? (God, I hope not!) My betas don’t seem to think so.So what’s going on? What am I doing wrong?
Well, if there’s anything I’ve learned from years in the query trenches, it’s that agents are just like us. They are looking for that story they want to read exactly when they want to read it and they have a lot of work and words vying for their attention.You can’t be ‘the one’ for everyone. But you have to believe that your fairy god agent is out there.
That is the key to surviving the process. You can question yourself. You can change. You can learn. You can try again.Doubting yourself and your writing is normal. Wanting to give up is normal. When it just isn’t happening, you start to wonder if it ever will.
I know I have.After all, at this point it seems forming fossils move faster than the publishing industry. Requests no longer bring any hope –just anticipation of the disappointment that comes with the inevitable rejection. Researching agents is torture. Sending out queries seems pointless.
But it’s taught me endurance and the meaning of the word ‘determined’. It’s helped me develop a thick skin. It’s kept me on my toes and in constant search of bettering my craft.Sometimes, the query process is just a blip on the radar for published authors.
But other times... I think the query trenches are where mettle is tested and writers are made.Thanks so much for this encouraging post, Katie! It was great having you on my blog. So, ladies and gents, are you going the traditional route? Have you met with any sort of success? How do you deal with rejection?