Date specific responses, and cover letters

Hi Miss Snark!

I just received an email today from an agent interested in a partial and a synopsis. An interesting bit, though - she asked me to send it after a certain date (March 20th to be precise).

Why such a specific date? I'm not confused or upset or any of that sort of thing - just curious. Is it her personal method of organization, or is after March 20th when agents finish one round of something?

Also, when I DO mail it to her, what type of letter should I include? Clearly not the full query, as she received that... is it just a "Dear Rock'em Sock'em agent, here is the 75 page partial MS and synopsis you requested that I send to you after March 20th, I have also enclosed an SASE as per your request"?

Be sure to bundle KY up today, it's cold and looks like it's about to rain! (KY sneers at cold and rain. Also Rottweilers)

I can't think of anything off the top of my head that is associated with March 20 other than everyone is back from London and clearing their desk of the accumulated debris after a week away.

Clearly she's looked at her calendar and doesn't want to start getting stuff till she's got time to read it. I do this too, but it usually involves "hell freezing over" or "Poodle Appreciation Day, 2008.

And it won't hurt to send her the same cover letter you did before to remind her why she wanted to see it. Or a cover letter that says "herewith what you asked for" and a copy of the original cover under that.

People send me partials with NOTHING and they really shoot themselves in the foot by doing so. I keep track of what I've asked for but I don't keep pages. If someone just sends pages, frequently I don't know if I'm reading memoir, true crime, or an expose of New York State Assembly. Never assume an agent remembers anything, even when they've asked for stuff. You can't go wrong being thorough.


Stephen said...

My agent threw something of a cordon sanitaire around the first half of March, specifically because of the London Book Fair - preparing for it, attending it, and handling the aftermath. She is UK-based. US agents may want an even longer post-Fair gap, to catch up on everything that was going on while they were enjoying the delights of London's Docklands.

Anonymous said...

Stephen, I initially misread your post as indicating that US agents were enjoying the delights of London's Dockhands. Upon consideration, I wonder if the average London Dockhand is any more enjoyable than the average Gulf Coast dockhand...Hm...

Anonymous said...

The date may be something as simple as she's going to be visiting her lover, her mother, or her second cousin twice removed, and won't be back until the 19th.