What Stace had to say on Friday, January 2nd, 2009
A few bits before I “officially” return

Yes, I know. You’re all waiting with bated breath, right? Ha.

Okay. First, yes, I am messing about with the template. I attempted to download the new CSS template I’m using for my shiny! new! website!, but Blogger kept insisting something was wrong with that code. Nothing was wrong with the code; I’ve run it through three different programs to make sure. The problem, I guess, is that it’s a webpage code and not a blogpage code. I dunno. Anyway, it blows, because I love my shiny! new! website! template. (Above is a sneak preview of the header.)

Anyway. Feedback is appreciated. I can already see the sidebar fonts are too light; I will fix them over the weekend.

Second.

I hope the person in question doesn’t mind me posting this, but a friend said something to me earlier–and I said something in return–that I felt the need to repeat here publicly.

In a nutshell, my friend is getting ready to begin the query process. I sent her a list of names of fantasy agents I esteem–Jim McCarthy, Rachel Vater, Miriam Kriss, Kim Whalen at Trident, Katie Menick at Howard Morhaim, to name a few–to add to her list.

Of course, at the top of the list I put my own agent. :-)

My friend thanked me for the suggestions but mentioned she probably wouldn’t query my agent because she didn’t think she had a chance at interesting an agent with such a prestigious agency (Look, this is what SHE said, okay. I’m not trying to brag or anything here, I’m really not, so I hope I don’t sound like one of these people who’s constantly running around talking about their agent and how their agent is the greatest agent who ever lived and how other writers would kill, yes, kill, to be repped by my agent because my agent gets a billion queries a minute and is clearly The Most Important Person In Publishing and the business would stop dead if this person were ever to leave it because they are so, so, so important and amazing and thus by extension so am I. So please don’t think I’m doing that.)(Although I do obviously think my agent is pretty fucking cool.)

Anyway.

She told me she didn’t have a chance with him, because she didn’t have any prior publication credits and she’s not writing in a “hot” subgenre, and this is what I said in return:

Don’t be ridiculous. Prior credits have nothing to do with it and you should know that. Chris signed {another cool writer} and I don’t think {writer} has any prior credits. I know my prior credits didn’t matter one bit to him.

Query him. Query him, unless you just don’t think you’re good enough to get a really good agent; in which case, why query anybody at all? Believe me, if I’m good enough for him–me, of all people–so is anybody else.

What’s the worst that can happen? You’ll waste under a minute cutting and pasting a query letter? You’ll get a polite rejection? Oooh, scary. :rolleyes

Yes, I’m being deliberately harsh here in an attempt to show you that you’re being silly. Query EVERYONE who can give you proper representation. EVERYONE. So they say no, so what? Chris isn’t some sort of beast; he’s not going to come to your house and throw poop at you if your query isn’t for him, or send out an email to every other agent in NY making fun of you for having the effrontery to think *he* might be interested in your work.

Either you believe you’re publishable or you don’t. (Yes, I use boldface a lot; so? You got a problem with that?) And if you do, you query everyone. Period.

Hugs, dear. I’m trusting that you know I’m really not trying to be a bitch here; I just don’t want you to limit yourself like that. Where would I be right now if I hadn’t decided to go ahead and query him? Maybe I’d be repped by somebody else, sure; I had five or six other fulls out when he offered. But you know, maybe not. Who knows?

Just send the fucking query. At worst you’ll get a form rejection. At best you’ll get a great agent.

And that goes for you too, readers. Don’t give me that shit about how The Big Guys aren’t going to be interested in you. Either you’re ready or you’re not. Either you think your work is publishable or you don’t. Why limit yourself at the query stage? If they say no, they say no; big damn deal. What if Bigtime Agent is the one, and you never find out because you’re too chicken?

There are LOTS of great agents out there. Try them all.

Thus ends your new year inspiration for the day.

6 comments to “A few bits before I “officially” return”

  1. Pink Ink
    Comment
    1
    · January 3rd, 2009 at 9:15 am · Link

    Yes! I was thinking which big agents I should go for, and then something holds me back thinking, don’t be ridiculous…

    But thanks to you, I will Go For It.

    Happy New Year!



  2. kirsten saell
    Comment
    2
    · January 3rd, 2009 at 1:55 pm · Link

    Hey, D, I like the new look–and that header is fab. I redid my blog for the new year, too, though I just grabbed a premade blogger template. I wish I could figure out enough HTML to stick a sidebar on the left, tho.

    And good advice as always. If you’re ready to query, start from the top.



  3. Charles Gramlich
    Comment
    3
    · January 3rd, 2009 at 6:09 pm · Link

    Good advice.



  4. BernardL
    Comment
    4
    · January 4th, 2009 at 8:41 am · Link

    Although it seems depressing, querying and getting rejected is the rule rather than the exception. The optimistic part is we sure have a lot of potential targets. Don’t miss any. :)



  5. Seeley deBorn
    Comment
    5
    · January 4th, 2009 at 10:34 pm · Link

    Love, love, love the new header! Didn’t think you’d go so dark. Very perty.

    And anyone who wouldn’t work top down in queries and subs needs a hell of a talking to. Good thing she has you, eh? 😉



  6. Marian
    Comment
    6
    · January 6th, 2009 at 8:13 pm · Link

    Goodness, your friend sounds like a complete n00b. Luckily you talked sense to her. :p

    You know what the best part is? I sent out the query and then thought, good idea to have more than one query out at a time. That way, if you get a rejection, at least you know there are other queries out there.

    So I sent out two more and thought, OK, that’s a nice number for Monday.

    Then I came home today to a partial request. Not from Chris, but from another agency with prior sales and experience in spec fic. So that was way cool and I have you to thank for it. :)



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