At 2am on Tuesday morning, I'd reduced my incoming email pile up down to 20 pending. It had taken three days to pare it down from 186.
This morning I have 144, and that's after I pared out all the DorothyL posts, the queries that go in a separate file, and the thank yous that didn't need a response. 144 left. It's 9:40am. I have to pick up the phone and dial for dollars starting at 10.
Your query arrives. It doesn't have anything in it but an excerpt. I don't know if it's crime fiction, true crime, memoir, what. I don't know if this is the opening, the closing or the middle.
I say no. Is this the wisest, most judicious, most careful decision? Maybe not. But at this point, all I want is fewer emails.
There's a reason that query letters have a certain form to them. There's a reason I ask for a hook before I ask to read the pages. I'm not doing that to make you crazy. I'm doing it so that when you send me an email, I don't go crazy, and auto-reject you.