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Marina Snow
02-04-2009, 07:52 PM
I am sending a query letter to an agent who has probably gotten married recently because she is listed in my agent book as Bess Reed but the agency website has her listed as Bess Reed Currence.

Do I address her as Ms. Reed Currence or as Ms. Currence?

Another question for you folks is this: How do female agents feel about being addressed as Ms. when they are married? When sending queries, I always use "Ms." because one never knows if the agent is married or not. In this case, we can assume she got married but I try not to assume anything in life.

Red.Ink.Rain
02-04-2009, 07:56 PM
I always write "Dear (First name) (Last name):" to avoid that complication. :) "Dear Tina Wexler" or "Dear Kristin Nelson"...it eliminates the weirdness of trying to figure out if they're married.

Marina Snow
02-04-2009, 08:14 PM
I always write "Dear (First name) (Last name):" to avoid that complication. :) "Dear Tina Wexler" or "Dear Kristin Nelson"...it eliminates the weirdness of trying to figure out if they're married.

Good suggestion. So in this case, I can write "Dear Bess Reed Currence" and cover all my bases. Thank you.

When is it okay to call an agent or editor by their first name? After a few emails back and forth to each other? Only when they tell me to do it?

Tierartz
02-04-2009, 10:39 PM
Wow, I like the full name in the salutation, that really does simplify things. As for the whole first name thing, I take my cue from how the agent responds. If he/she uses my first name, I do the same and so forth.

Marina Snow
02-05-2009, 02:40 AM
As for the whole first name thing, I take my cue from how the agent responds. If he/she uses my first name, I do the same and so forth.

That is how I have conducted myself in the past. So unless I hear differently, I will keep it up. Thanks so much.

Horserider
02-05-2009, 03:52 AM
Do I address her as Ms. Reed Currence or as Ms. Currence?


If she's married shouldn't it be Mrs. not Ms? :D

MaryMumsy
02-05-2009, 04:04 AM
If she's married shouldn't it be Mrs. not Ms? :D

That is a matter of personal preference. From websites we are unlikely to know which they prefer. I've been married almost 37 years, and I prefer Ms.

MM

FennelGiraffe
02-05-2009, 04:15 AM
If she's married shouldn't it be Mrs. not Ms? :D


Marking marital status by Mrs. or Miss is appropriate only in social contexts.

In business, where a woman's marital status is irrelevant, Ms. is standard.

Unless the individual in question has explicitly stated a preference. That's always the final answer.

dpaterso
02-05-2009, 04:16 AM
Dear Bess, please find enclosed...

-Derek

jvc
02-05-2009, 04:30 AM
I always write "Dear (First name) (Last name):" to avoid that complication. :) "Dear Tina Wexler" or "Dear Kristin Nelson"...it eliminates the weirdness of trying to figure out if they're married.
I've done this and it has seemed to work in the past. At least, I haven't been picked up on it.

adtabb
02-05-2009, 04:45 AM
Always use caution guessing an agents gender. I have generally seen the name "Reed" used for males, not females. So many names are gender bent these days, gender salutations are almost meaningless.

If the website states a preference, follow it. Otherwise a "Dear Agent's Names," is perfectly acceptable until you are sure how they perfer to be addressed.

IceCreamEmpress
02-05-2009, 05:10 AM
"Ms." is always correct--the whole point of "Ms." is that it is neither "Miss" nor "Mrs."

It's not just a substitute for "Miss".

I have generally seen the name "Reed" used for males, not females.

The agent's name is Bess Reed Currence now, and was formerly Bess Reed. So yeah, she's definitely female.