Queries a snarkling

I recently queried an agent at the very top of my list. She wrote me back (via email) the same day, requesting a partial. I sent it, and I got a very quick read--as in that very night. The next morning I got a form rejection. In spite of the rejection, I think this ms has a real shot and will continue to query it, because it's had a phenomenal request rate. But I also have several other completed mss, and another in the works. Is it okay to re-query agents who have rejected me when I have a new project ready to go? Even if I didn't get personal feedback? I'm interested in your opinion, but I'd also like to hear (read) whatever you know about your fellow agents' preferences.

Nothing makes me scream louder than someone who responds to a no by sending me another query letter. It seems obvious to me that if I didn't like something even well enough to write a "try me on other things" note, I'm probably not the right agent for you.

There are 65 gazillion agents in New York. Try a few more before you go back to the ones who've said no.

There's no law requiring agents to use form rejection letters. If I like something but I don't think it's finished, or ready, or quite right, but I'll look at other things, I'll write and say so.

People do this all the time and I want to wring their necks.

Not yours of course, dear Snarkling. You were wise enough to ask first.


Anonymous said...

Wow, that was fast. Thanks. I'm glad I did ask first.

Anonymous said...

What if it's been a couple years, it's a completely different and much better book?

Anonymous said...

I'd posted this down, down down on the Snarkometer between a couple of early Crapometers, and I really would love to hear your answer.
It's in response to someone saying they'd NEVER start a novel with a letter. My set up, it's a trilogy, set during the Vietnam War. first book it's the letters of the young protag to her uncle in Vietnam, the second is the uncle's letters home with a reverse arc to his actual circumstance in the book-- he comes home wounded, starts with his optimistic letters in bootcamp. And third, the letter of a refugee to the mother left behind, not knowing if the letters ever reach her...

"I don't. Hey Miss Snark, I missed your roll call... and most likely you'll miss this minor querulous query. So if it's hysterical, er historical (okay, set during MY childhood, and thinking that would give anyone the screaming mimis)fiction, and the letters are short and sweet, reflective of the chapter as well as the time period (Vietnam War) and introduces an absent character (for this novel), You would reject it out of hand (I know many feel the same way, and I don't have the intention of querying you), or is this more of a warning flag, that it'd better be stellar and not hamper story and voice?

Enquiring minds want to know so badly, I may very well ask higher up, because I doubt if you'll lower yourself (get it, get it) all the way to the lower Crapometer.

BTW. LOVE your blog. One of my ambitions is calligraphing and illustrating the Hunting of the Snark."

thank you, your royal Snarkiness... I'm not worthy! (well maybe)

Anonymous said...

Sorry for the typos, I've been following the horrendous news of late and I'm not as on top of things as I'd like. Feel free to Snark away, though, for consistency's sake! And thank you again, for an honest answer.

Miss Snark said...

It's easier if you email questions so I can cut and paste into the blog posting. I lose track of them here.