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  1. jamesE
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    jamesE Member

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    Queries/Submissions should i mention this in a query?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by jamesE, Nov 7, 2012.

    "I would like to note that I have given the manuscript to random people whom I don't know to read and they have all loved it."

    which is true. should i stick that in at the end of my query?
     
  2. B93
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    B93 Active Member

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    No. The agent will make his own evaluation, and at best ignore or at worst resent being told what other people think.
     
  3. jamesE
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    jamesE Member

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    I see your point though im trying to get the agent to read it as well....
     
  4. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    That won't do it. If anything, it weakens your case, by obviously trying too hard.

    Keep it simple and direct.
     
  5. chicagoliz
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    chicagoliz Contributing Member Contributor

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    No. Make them want to read it by what you say about the story in the query. Agents won't care if a random person loved your story.
     
  6. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    That absolutely screams "AMATEUR" and that's really not something you wanna highlight so well to your agent.

    And frankly, the agent will probably think you gave it to your friends and family, who are unreliable because they'd be biased. The agent cannot possibly know how avid a writer your aunt is or how great a critic your mum is - he just knows, aunty and mummy love the dear writer and therefore will likely say they love the book regardless. Also, your friends and family liking something doesn't mean there's a market for your book - it doesn't actually tell the agent how well it's gonna sell.

    Now if you've managed to get reputable magazines or websites to review it, that would be different I think. As you have it, leave it out - at best, it'd be ignored and at worst, it'd actually hurt your chances.
     
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  7. JamesOliv
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    JamesOliv Senior Member

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    Ditto that.

    Besides, even if you give it to complete strangers, they could also be trying to sound polite.

    I was at a book signing in Florida about a year and a half ago. The author was published through Tate (vanity) and landed a signing at an independent bookstore. I wandered in looking for a book to read on the flight home. So I was the only person in the store besides the author and staff. This woman was oozing desperation. She followed me around the store telling me about her book. I kept telling her how interesting the book sounded (it didnt). To get her off of my back, I picked up a copy and read the first few pages. I read the first few pages. I told her how much I enjoyed it (I didn't) and took it with me to the register ready to buy it out of pity.

    I lost my nerve to spend $25 on a book to make her feel better and left it next to the register, leaving with some Malcolm Gladwell, Neil Gaiman and a desire to get as far away from that bookstore as quickly as possible.

    I stressed myself out needlessly because I didn't want to tell this stranger that I didn't want to read her crappy book. I know of at least three friends of mine who would have purchased it just to mark it up with a red pen and then would have returned it to her. But that isn't my style.

    My point is that reviews from family are not usually helpful (though that depends on your family). But reviews from strangers are not always reliable, especially when you personally ask them to read the work and provide feedback. I'm not talking about sending your book out to critics. I'm talking about approaching a friend of a friend or a guy your dad knows and asking them to read it over. Even if you force your work upon strangers in a bookstore you run the risk of them just trying to be polite to avoid an unpleasant confrontation.

    The reason why paid credits are worth mentioning is that you were not published because someone felt sorry for you and didnt want to tell you your work sucked. You were published and paid by a professional who felt your work was both well written and had commercial appeal. Lots of freebie pubs are willing to publish almost anything just so they can produce a product. So they don't really help in the end either.

    Think of it like a resume. If you are applying for a job as an accountant, having held paid accounting positions for the last five years will buttress your case. Saying that your mom and ten strangers on the street told you that you would be an awesome accountant wouldn't.
     
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  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    ditto all of the above!
     
  9. Selbbin
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    Selbbin I hate you Contributor

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    How awkward and horrible for both of you. Even though she sounds incredibly naive, it would have been humiliating having no one there. It's clearly her own fault, but still... I have a soft spot for that. I probably would have bought one out of pity...


    Bingo.
     
  10. cabbage
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    cabbage Member

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    I agree that such a thing should not be included. Noah Lukeman specifically warns against it and he’s an authority on these things.
     
  11. JohnW
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    JohnW Member

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    I didn't know anything about query letters until a few minutes ago but how about:

    This book is your pension.
     
  12. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    avoid hyperbole like the plague!

    unless, of course, you want to be treated like a plague carrier... :eek:
     

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