Oh, I love these things!

Writer Unboxed » Query Letter FAQs (Part II): 10 More Questions Answered.

I particularly like this one:

4. How many query rejections would necessitate a major overhaul of the query?

Submit no more than 10 queries to start. If only 0-1 respond with requests for more, then you’ve got a problem. Go back to the drawing board and overhaul the query before the next wave of 6-10 submissions.

That’s fascinating. I’ve only gone through the agent submissions process… once? In 2008? And I sent out a little more than a dozen and got nothing but form letters. (And yes, that is the most half-hearted attempt at getting an agent ever. And the fact that it’s taken me 5 years to get back to this point is horrifying.) But, yes. I would not be at all surprised to know that my query letter sucked.

Well, you know. On top of other things. The story wasn’t particularly strong, either. And it was short. But this is the sort of thing you realize when looking back 5 years in time.

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I’ve already said that I’m obsessed with word counts. So that’s the link that caught my eye when I got last week’s Guide to Literary Agents newsletter. But, hey! They were actually doing a collection of some of their best and most popular links, which is why they were all ridiculously useful. Here they are, in case you want ’em:

They’re all quick reads. Enjoy!

Photo of the cover of the 2013 Guide to Literary Agents.

Hotlinked from WritersDigest.com.

The 2013 Guide to Literary Agents is out!

I’m actually kind of flustered about this. I got the 2012 Guide last year as a Christmas present, since I was intending on spending all year annoying the daylights out of agents. And… I haven’t. I’m starting a new project and am letting Autumn sit for a few weeks before I edit it–and now the next edition is out. Darn it.

It’s a useful book, though. It’s an easy way to find a ton of agents in your field, with their websites, their submission requirements, their emails, and everything else you need to query them.

But I’m still peeved that I’ve been so slow that a whole other edition has come out in the meantime. I need to get haulin’.

Ahhh! I was complaining about query letters just last week. But then the biweekly Writer’s Digest newsletter came out yesterday, and it turns out that they have a whole series on novel queries:

Successful Queries | WritersDigest.com.

Goodness, so much for my feeling that novel queries were less gimmicky than magazine queries. Some of these are incredibly quirky and charming. (I’m looking at you, The Rise and Fall of Mount Majestic.)