letters from the query wars

# of queries read this week: 176
# of partials/manuscripts requested: 1
genre of partials/manuscripts reqested: SF thriller

Note: Have now read all query letters pre-July. If your query was sent either via email or snailmail prior to July 1st and you have not received a reply, either your query didn’t reach me or my reply did not reach you. Please check your spam filters. This message brought to you by the letters “p” and “q”.

Today’s missives from the front:

* Still not reading unsolicited attachments. (Also still not king.) If I didn’t specifically and personally ask for you to send it, it’s unsolicited.

* If you query several times via email over the course of a few months for the same project with identical query letter and pages, and each time the response from me is to decline (until I finally succumb after you reach double digits and block your email address because really this is so unfair to eveyone else), sending the same query via post will garner the same reply (or none if you didn’t include an SASE).

* Because of that infamous spam querier who has sent the same query multiple times from multiple email addresses, a legit query was almost deleted yesterday as the author’s name showed in the from field as the same as one of the psuedonyms frequently used. If you know someone who is employing these kinds of tactics, please say something to them. The query you save may be your own.

13 responses to “letters from the query wars

  1. Just from a curiosity standpoint, you seem to request on average say 1 manuscript per 200 query letters. What percentage of those requested manuscripts turn out to be something that you represent? I am assuming it’s still a very low percentage.

  2. I hope the use of the legit name as a psuedonym was accidental.

  3. I’m not a namer-of-names in general, but I’ve blogged about this before: http://arcaedia.livejournal.com/195322.html
    Same two authors.

  4. I keep watching my news feeds expecting to see something about Query Spammer snapping and doing something really newsworthy… If I knew Query Spammer’s secret identity, rest assured I would say something to someone. ::shakes head:: Spammer needs help. Pills or a shrink or a hug or a brick up the side of the head… Something.

  5. Whoa. Reading over entries like this one, I’m astonished at the mind-numbing, jaw-dropping, ignorance of what you put up with. As if your work wasn’t difficult enough.
    The phrase “sharp as a bowling ball” comes to mind.
    Thank you for persevering.

  6. Mad Querier Strikes Again
    When I first started reading about the Mad Querier I thought perhaps he was just one of those poor, deluded individuals who aren’t the brightest crayons in the box. Now I’m wondering if he isn’t just seriously mentally ill, which means bad karma all around if some enterprising agent “recommends” a vanity publisher. Sigh.
    It seems we have an archnemesis in the building, agents and legit queriers alike. Where’s Miss Snark and sidekick KY when you need them? Do we have a Snark signal?

  7. The multiple spam-querier is now on Twitter, hitting up agents and editors. We’re all pretty sure it’s the same guy. Oy…

  8. Query Spammer- WTF? I learn something new everyday! Too bad there’s isn’t some TSA software that can hold these folks up so they never make it to your inbox.

  9. Why would this person make a fool of himself? If your work is not ready, it’s not ready. Work on your craft and be patient. It’s not a difficult concept to grasp. Sheesh. He could have written several more novels by now. What a turd.
    ~Tyhitia
    http://obfuscationofreality.blogspot.com/

  10. Replies, and the lack of them
    If your query was sent either via email or snailmail prior to July 1st and you have not received a reply, either your query didn’t reach me or my reply did not reach you. Please check your spam filters.
    So, what exactly DO you recommend for people who have received no reply to a query sent in before July 1? Faithful checking of the spam filter has revealed nothing caught in its toils. Follow-up query (one) to you went unanswered. Would it be inappropriate to send the query again, perhaps by snail mail this time?

    • Re: Replies, and the lack of them
      You may certainly send it by snail mail (and be sure to include an old-fashioned SASE for reply) if email is failing you. Same guidelines as on the website: http://www.maassagency.com/submissions.html
      Sidenote: It can take as long to reply to follow-ups as original queries, particularly when there are so many pending, so, if that’s the case, you may want to give it just a little more time.

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