When one is querying for an agent, let's say for the, oh I don't know, Young Adult market, how many agents do you think one should target in the search? 5? 15?

Query until someone says yes. Pick some agents, send it out, pick some more. It's that simple.


cin said...
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Debra Kemp said...

I always kept at least ten queries out at any one time when I was shopping my novel. And I had a list of MANY more on hand. So whenever I'd get a rejection in the mail, I'd send out TWO new queries the next day.

Keep the manuscripts circulating!

Dave Kuzminski said...

The idea about sending out queries in small batches is so you can refine and polish your query. If the first few don't respond favorably, then you can review your query letter and work on it before sending it out to other agents. The idea is to make your work catch their attention. If you're not getting requests for partials or fulls, then your query letter isn't doing the job.

Debra Kemp said...

Absolutely, Dave. It was an ever evolving process. Do I have an agent? No, I went electronic--the wave of the future.

Nance said...

Just for giggles- I have over 550 rejections letters in the old bin. Fifteen from agents since I was published. A writer I know once told me she would have given up well before 200. Huh-Guess I'm stubborn but a good sense of humor helps too.

It does pay off. My seventh book is coming out in June and I do finally have a very good agent who believes in my work.

So, as Debra said-"Keep the manuscripts circulating!"

Debra Kemp said...

Someone who beat my measly 208 rejections! But mine were all for the same book, what about you, Nance? My hubby kept reminding me, maybe the next letter you send will bring acceptance.

Of course while I queried, I kept revising the book.

Congrats on your seventh novel. I doubt I'll ever be known as a prolific writer.

Nance said...

Actually I write about three books a year- including revisions-lots and lots of revisions.

I think I had 18 complete 100,000 word manuscripts before I sold number 12-everything I've written since then has been new-keeps me fresh. Completing so many books taught me a lot about plot, revision and characterization.

Congrats on so many rejections from just one book. It shows you love it-you believe in it and you're going to do your best to help it see the light of day. I think you get the gold crown of positive stubborness!