March was the slowest month for my inbox so far, so caught up quick! I received a total of 330 queries for the month, including those I requested through #PitMad.
Total queries: 330
Number of responses sent so far: 321* I've responded to all regular queries and am calling March closed. I do still have #PitMad requests to respond to, but because I requested 50 pages alongside the query I'm treating these differently.
Total requests: 7 (2 YA contemporary, 1 YA historical, 2 YA fantasy, 1 MG fantasy 1 MG contemporary)
#PitMad requests: 9
Genre Breakdowns so far....
TOTAL YA: 140
3 magical realism
26 science fiction
TOTAL MG: 53
1 picture book
8 science fiction
TOTAL ADULT: 128
2 magical realism
15 science fiction
2 stumpers. I have no idea what this is, and the writer didn't provide a genre, either.
TOTAL OUTSIDE MY GENRE: 7
TOTAL QUERIES THAT DID NOT FOLLOW SUB GUIDELINES: 9
TOTAL QUERIES WITH INAPPROPRIATE WORD COUNTS FOR THEIR CATEGORY: 6. Including one project with a word count of 999k! Come on, guys.
TOTAL QUERIES ABOUT NAZIS: 2. I'm going to start keeping track of these in the hopes that one day I never, ever get another one. Please do not send me projects that are sympathetic to Nazis. I have no interest in that take.
TOTAL REPEAT QUERIES (same writer, same project): 2 :(
TOTAL PERSONAL REJECTIONS SENT: 3. Most of my rejections are form letters, but sometimes I add a personal note in there, when moved to do so. I cannot do this for everyone, so please do not respond to rejections asking for more details. I understand how frustrating it is to not know what to fix or what to improve. I know that silence or generic politenesses aren't something you can work with. Lean on critique partners and beta readers to get the critical feedback you need. And know that if I do send personalized feedback to you on a rejection, that it comes from a genuine place.
THE ONES THAT GOT AWAY: I lost two projects this month. Oof. The first was a #PitMad request. The author emailed to withdraw her book from consideration after signing with another agent. I wish I'd been given the chance to read the full and put my hat in the ring, but sometimes when authors find the perfect agent, they don't need to explore other options. I was grateful that she wrote to let me know, and sent her my heartfelt congratulations.
The second project I lost out on still hurts, because I chose to bow out. I got an incredible query mid-month but hadn't had a chance to look at it yet when the author emailed to let me know she had an offer of representation, and she set a week-long deadline to hear back from everyone else. I requested the full manuscript immediately and started reading. It was a gorgeous book. But...I couldn't finish it in time. It was a hectic week for me both personally and professionally and I just could not get the reading done. It wouldn't have been fair to either me or the author to offer representation without having finished the book. So the day before her deadline I sent an email that pained me to write. I told her how much I loved what I'd read so far, but that I wasn't going to be finished by her deadline, and so I was bowing out. It broke my heart to hit send and let go of that project. But the author was gracious and understanding in her response, and I have NO DOUBT that you'll all be hearing about her and this rich, compelling, truly special book in the future.
TOTAL NEW CLIENTS SIGNED: 1! Technically this came from a February query, but going back and editing old posts to announce good news seems silly, so from now on I'll announce new clients in the month I sign them! Rachael Garza, with her self-described "weird little book about sisters and refugees and magic" is my latest client and I'm so, so excited to be working with her on this beautiful book. You can find Rachael on twitter: @Rachael846
I've now responded to all regular queries sent in March! This does not include requested manuscripts (some dating back to January. Eep) or #PitMad requests. If you sent a regular query in March and haven't heard from me, please resend!