1. Patrick M. Egan
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    Patrick M. Egan Banned

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    Agent Email Query Wait Time

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Patrick M. Egan, Feb 2, 2012.


    I sent out a small batch of email queries to agents earlier this week. Believe it or not, when I began writing my novel, snail mail queries were the only way to go, and I knew what to expect ~ interest or rejection, you'd receive a response in the mail anywhere from one to four weeks. But now I've read that if an agent is uninterested in your email query, there is no response at all.

    Can anyone give me an idea of approximately how long I should wait before deciding that no response means no interest?

    What's the longest period of time anyone experienced between emailing an agent and receiving a response?

    Thanks!

    Patrick
     
  2. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    agents can take up to many months to respond, depending on how busy they are and how many queries they get deluged with on a daily basis...

    aren't you checking each one's submission guidelines to see how long they say it may be before they get back to you?... if not, you should be... and then add 1-3 months to that, before giving up on them or sending a 'did you get my query' query, or calling to ask when you might expect a response...

    that said, many simply don't respond if not interested, but it can't hurt to try one reminder email/postcard/phone call...

    my longest span between query and response was nearly a year, believe it or not!
     
  3. Patrick M. Egan
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    Patrick M. Egan Banned

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    The site I'm using does not have response times in the submission guidelines.

    Was that one year wait for a response from an email, or from a letter sent snail mail?
     
  4. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    what do you mean by 'site'?... each agent's site will have guidelines... if you're only sending from an angent listing site and not checking each agent's requirements first, then you're just wasting a lot of time and energy and shooting yourself in the foot by not giving them what they want...
     
  5. Patrick M. Egan
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    Patrick M. Egan Banned

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    I use agentquery.com
    There have a full list of agents, complete with what genres they work in, and a sampling of the books they have sold.
    About the only information not on the site is response time.
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    that's why using sites like that are not enough... use them only to find agents that handle your genre and then go directly to the agent's own site to check each one's guidelines... and first check each name on preditors & editors to make sure they're legit, before going any further...

    there's no quick and easy way to handle the querying process, if you want to get optimum results...
     
  7. Patrick M. Egan
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    Patrick M. Egan Banned

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    I never said I wanted either a "quick" or "easy" way.

    All I asked was whether anyone could give me an approximation of how long email responses take nowadays, and when I should assume that no response equals no interest.

    And you never answered my previous question: was that one year wait for a response based on a snail mail query, or an email?
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    there's no way to tell other than by each agent's guidelines... and i gave you detailed info/advice on that issue...

    it was too long ago to recall whether it was snail or e-mail, but it makes no difference as far as i can see... a wait is a wait, is a wait...

    i have to say you seem awfully contentious and borderline rude for someone asking for free advice/info...
     

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