If you are going to take the time to contact an agent or an editor, give it your very best the first time. Don’t rush your work and don’t rush the query.
You might think, how’s the editor/agent going to know? Here are some tell-tale signs when contacting our office:
You write only a query letter. As outlined on our agency site, we want a full proposal—exact guidelines on our site.
You send a proposal, but it’s for erotica. As outlined on our site, we don’t handle any projects with graphic sexuality.
You send a well-thought out proposal, but it reads like a Goodfellows screenplay, enough f-bombs to start WWIII. As outlined on our site, we don’t handle projects with profanity in them.
You did your homework, and your proposal includes EVERYthing I want to see, but it’s for sci-fi. As outlined…well, you get it. I don’t handle sci-fi.
You have a wonderful, absolutely marvelous proposal, but the actual writing just isn’t there yet. You’ve rushed the editing or written a sloppy, hasty synopsis so it’s impossible to tell how the story progresses and ends. The story is full of telling, opens with backstory and/or five pages of description, doesn’t begin with pop and action, and basically, just isn’t ready to be submitted yet. At least, not to me.
I can be very honest with you because I made ALL of these mistakes, except for the bombs, when I first submitted my work. I had NOT done my homework.
As an agent, I WANT you to succeed. I WANT you to have a great experience in the industry. I WANT for you to turn in the best manuscript possible. I WANT to see you get published.
So my advice? Don’t rush it. We will still be here once you’re ready.