Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Follow up on yesterday's blog post


Steve Forti asked

My last book didn't get picked up, but a number of agents said they loved the writing and would like to see the next one. What's the right way to remind that when querying the next one?



First thing to remember here is that agents DO NOT say that as a matter of course, or just to let you down gently. They mean it.


And if an agent says that to you, they're NOT sending you form rejections. (Also a good thing.)


And it sounds like the agent read some or all of your novel. Yesterday's post was more about writers who did not make it past the incoming query stage.


Now to the specifics:


Dear Snookums:

You read my epic tome Nemesis last year and complimented the writing and asked to see my next one. 


Quote what the agent said as closely as possible.

We have a keen ear for our own voice so you want to be as close to it as you can.


LEAD with this so that the agent knows you're not cold querying.




Does this help?


Steve Forti said...

(After that momentary panic reflex when you see your name and wonder if you did something wrong) Yes, indeed-ee-doo, that helps immensely. And is reassuring, thank you!
Now about finishing that "next one". Gotta plow through that last 25%...

AJ Blythe said...

Haha, Steve, that's a definite sign of a guilty conscious. I wonder what you've been up to...?

Good to know how to respond to those rejections. Thanks as always, Janet.

E.M. Goldsmith said...

Oh, this is great information. Could you reply to the email where they asked to see your next great thing or should it be a new email? I figured replying to the email where they asked to see the next great thing would be a good way of showing them that they actually did ask you for new material? Considering how much material agents see all the time.

I always feel so spoiled when we get multiple posts in a week. I wonder if it is dangerous to spoil writers?

Katja said...

Very interesting, thank you Janet.
I can't wait to query my book that I have translated to German. I just have to wait for my German friend and proofreader to be done with it.
And then, I'll probably have no time for querying because I have had a twist in my life - it looks like that I'm getting a trilingual job in my BELOVED ZURICH for 1st July. OK, nothing is certain yet but I have passed the first 2 rounds of the interview process and will go over for a trial day next month.

Sorry for going off-topic but I'm just too excited. Not been working for over a decade due to my severe OCD but I've FOUGHT and FOUGHT my way back into life, phew.

John Davis Frain said...

I would read MY BELOVED ZURICH, Katja. Unless, of course, Zurich turned out to be a pet turtle in which case I'd think it would move kinda slow.


Katja said...

What? John Davis, I just let my English husband read my comment and then yours, because I just panicked a little. 😂 Like, I need and want this job but is my English still THAT bad? 🙃 MY BELOVED ZURICH isn't a book. 😆 Well, yet, at least.

I did quite well in my one-hour video call. In English and in German. They also tested my French and I was a bit surprised because they hadn't told me this would happen. But I also could answer those questions as well as those on the company itself (these were in English).

You did joke with me, right? 😰😅

RebeccaB said...

Plot twist: what if a kind agent said they wanted to see "a revised version of (old novel) or any future works," but now no longer have your (new novel) genre listed on their online query system? Do you pick the next closest category so you can get the query before her or do you just miss out on such a rare, promising lead? It wouldn't be totally off-genre--think: submitting Historical Fiction (with some romance) under Romance...or is that just a big tacky no?