AW Amazon Store

If this site is helpful to you,
Please consider a voluntary subscription to defray ongoing expenses.


 

Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 36

Thread: Images/Pics in queries?

  1. #1
    It's not simple. It's commercial /s chracatoa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Near Puget Sound, in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
    Posts
    143

    Question Images/Pics in queries?

    How do agents feel about images/pictures in queries?

    Here's the argument:

    - Liking it or not, the cover of a book influences its sales. I attended a conference talk where the author told us he had to change its cover from something that he thought was meaningful for his SciFi book, to a generic "spaceship in space" cover that screamed "I'm scifi damn it!". Note that here the "sale" is from the author to the agent, and not to readers, but the technique is similar.

    - We live in an age where books have trailers (I'm not linking anything here because most of them are for-sale stuff). Again, this is for readers, but the first sale you make is to your agent.

    - Even some twitter pitch events now allow you to do a "media pitch".

    Since I'm ready to start pitching again, and I was working on the media pitch, I thought that perhaps it'd be a good idea - something that makes the agent look twice, perhaps even improve her day after reading through several queries

    On the other hand, this could be seen as trying too much, and have the opposite effect.

    So, adding pics/images to queries: good, bad, or meh?
    Iím used to type my posts without paying much attention to them, I overuse adverbs and often confuse words that are similar. Please PM me if you find something.

    Follow my journey from untalented writer to crude blogger here: Writing at Fire Woods Park.
    In-depth analysis of agents here: Query & Publish. DUN DUN.

  2. #2
    Moderator AW Moderator Maryn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    I did not shoot the deputy
    Posts
    40,516
    I am not an agent. Or an author with a lot of sales. But putting anything unexpected in a query seems like dooming your chances. Agents don't want green ink or dried flowers or perfumed paper or beach sand or dog pix or anything else in the query. They want to know about the book and why you think they're the best agent to sell it to publishers.

    My understanding is that anything other than that is seen as a gimmick, unprofessional, and an immediate No, thank you.
    "I've never had to fake sarcasm."

    Brick by Brick, a mťnage ŗ trois novel (soon to be re-released)
    Taming the Wilde, FemDom spotted--and striped--in the wild
    Men in Love, anthology about--hey, you're already there, aren't you?
    Maryn Says, an irregular blog almost never about writing
    The Occasional Tweet

  3. #3
    Friendly Neighborhood Mustelidae The Otter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    In the room next to the noisy ice machine, for all eternity.
    Posts
    1,168
    Yeah, I'll second Maryn. Stick to the basics: a concise pitch of your book, along with relevant credentials. Anything else will just look unprofessional.
    Available in February 2018, my YA novel: WHEN MY HEART JOINS THE THOUSAND

  4. #4
    figuring it all out atwhatcost's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2015
    Location
    South Philly, PA
    Posts
    73
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    How do agents feel about images/pictures in queries?

    Here's the argument:

    - Liking it or not, the cover of a book influences its sales. I attended a conference talk where the author told us he had to change its cover from something that he thought was meaningful for his SciFi book, to a generic "spaceship in space" cover that screamed "I'm scifi damn it!". Note that here the "sale" is from the author to the agent, and not to readers, but the technique is similar.

    - We live in an age where books have trailers (I'm not linking anything here because most of them are for-sale stuff). Again, this is for readers, but the first sale you make is to your agent.

    - Even some twitter pitch events now allow you to do a "media pitch".

    Since I'm ready to start pitching again, and I was working on the media pitch, I thought that perhaps it'd be a good idea - something that makes the agent look twice, perhaps even improve her day after reading through several queries

    On the other hand, this could be seen as trying too much, and have the opposite effect.

    So, adding pics/images to queries: good, bad, or meh?
    If you want an agent because you're an illustrator, then include what they want in a query.

    If you want them to represent your writing, then include writing, not pictures.

    All the what-goes-on/in-the book stuff comes later.

    Prove you know all about that before you get an agent is usually proving why the agent doesn't want you as a client.

  5. #5
    Three of a perfect pair. AW Moderator amergina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    14,879
    Agents don't want attachments in queries (and most if not all will delete emails with attachments unread). Adding anything but text is a bad idea.

    Twitter pitches are not queries, so how they're done will be different. (And in those cases, the media files are stored elsewhere, so the agent isn't going to chance a virus by scrolling through a pitch feed and seeing a graphic.)

    Follow an agent's query submission guidelines. They're there for a reason.
    Done: Syncopation -- Rockstars! Kink! Reunited snarky enemies to lovers!
    WIP: Counterpoint -- Indomitable Rock God who's secretly a twink falls for a geek who likes to tie men up.

    Latest Release: Close Quarter
    Coming December 2017: Outside the Lines

    Website * Twitter * Tumblr

    Please consider a paid subscription to AbsoluteWrite to help with site's upkeep!

  6. #6
    It's not simple. It's commercial /s chracatoa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Near Puget Sound, in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
    Posts
    143
    It makes sense. Pictures are attachments after all. It's a bit ironic that you can have a watermark and/or letterhead in a real letter and no one bats an eye, but due to the e-mail format (plain/HTML) and the downside of having attachments, they're considered unprofessional.

    Sometimes the future is not that glamorous.
    Iím used to type my posts without paying much attention to them, I overuse adverbs and often confuse words that are similar. Please PM me if you find something.

    Follow my journey from untalented writer to crude blogger here: Writing at Fire Woods Park.
    In-depth analysis of agents here: Query & Publish. DUN DUN.

  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW cornflake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    13,787
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    How do agents feel about images/pictures in queries?

    Here's the argument:

    - Liking it or not, the cover of a book influences its sales. I attended a conference talk where the author told us he had to change its cover from something that he thought was meaningful for his SciFi book, to a generic "spaceship in space" cover that screamed "I'm scifi damn it!". Note that here the "sale" is from the author to the agent, and not to readers, but the technique is similar.

    - We live in an age where books have trailers (I'm not linking anything here because most of them are for-sale stuff). Again, this is for readers, but the first sale you make is to your agent.

    - Even some twitter pitch events now allow you to do a "media pitch".

    Since I'm ready to start pitching again, and I was working on the media pitch, I thought that perhaps it'd be a good idea - something that makes the agent look twice, perhaps even improve her day after reading through several queries

    On the other hand, this could be seen as trying too much, and have the opposite effect.

    So, adding pics/images to queries: good, bad, or meh?
    Even if you could add a cover photo, I'd imagine it'd only make an agent think it was either published or that you were likely to be trouble -- that you thought you should get to design the cover or whatnot.

    Why chase trouble?

  8. #8
    Rewriting My Destiny Cyia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Brillig in the slithy toves...
    Posts
    18,019
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    How do agents feel about images/pictures in queries?
    Your argument is invalid.

    It's a rookie move that annoys more than it inspires. You don't get to pick your cover, and even if the agent didn't mind, the image wouldn't be passed along to your publisher. However, some publishers will ask you for images that fit your idea of what your cover should look like so that they can then pass them along to the cover designer. It's just easier for them to do the cover and not have to worry about securing image rights. Plus, what's "meaningful" to you may not be marketable, and it's the market that matters to the publisher. They have to use a cover that will attract a reader's eye.

  9. #9
    Beastly Fido Roxxsmom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Lost in space. And meaning.
    Posts
    15,927
    I am not an industry pro or expert, but I concur with other opinions posted here. Always, always, always comply with the agent's or agencies instructions re querying and don't include unasked for materials. In the absence of overt directions on their websites (or other places where they make such information known), stick with the basic format for queries, and that means no extra images or attachments. If they want additional material, they will ask.

    As for images, book trailers and things like that, if you are querying an agent, you are pursuing trade publishing. Agents will try to sell their clients' work to publishers the agents think could be a good match. If a book finds a trade publisher, their team will be responsible for things like cover design, book trailers, and for other promotional material. They may consult with the author, and in some cases they may even solicit ideas, but I'd worry that including ideas for cover design, promotion etc, "up front" when querying an agent could come off as presumptuous at worst and putting the cart before the horse at best.
    Please excuse me, I was raised by wolves.

    My twitter - My FB - My blog

  10. #10
    It's not simple. It's commercial /s chracatoa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Near Puget Sound, in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
    Posts
    143
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyia View Post
    Your argument is invalid.

    It's a rookie move that annoys more than it inspires. You don't get to pick your cover, and even if the agent didn't mind, the image wouldn't be passed along to your publisher. However, some publishers will ask you for images that fit your idea of what your cover should look like so that they can then pass them along to the cover designer. It's just easier for them to do the cover and not have to worry about securing image rights. Plus, what's "meaningful" to you may not be marketable, and it's the market that matters to the publisher. They have to use a cover that will attract a reader's eye.
    Clearly it's a bad idea based on all the replies. I was just curious about it.

    Saying that, perhaps I wasn't clear about the intended goal of the image. It wouldn't be the cover of the book or even directed at future readers. Think of it as a tool to sell your book to the agent. A brochure, for the lack of a better word, like your temporary book title. Even the manuscript won't be the same once you sign with an agent.

    In other words, you'd be marketing to the agent.
    Iím used to type my posts without paying much attention to them, I overuse adverbs and often confuse words that are similar. Please PM me if you find something.

    Follow my journey from untalented writer to crude blogger here: Writing at Fire Woods Park.
    In-depth analysis of agents here: Query & Publish. DUN DUN.

  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW cornflake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    13,787
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    Clearly it's a bad idea based on all the replies. I was just curious about it.

    Saying that, perhaps I wasn't clear about the intended goal of the image. It wouldn't be the cover of the book or even directed at future readers. Think of it as a tool to sell your book to the agent. A brochure, for the lack of a better word, like your temporary book title. Even the manuscript won't be the same once you sign with an agent.

    In other words, you'd be marketing to the agent.
    Agents are readers, not tiny children or people who pick up a book once in a while because they saw the movie or whatever. They don't need -- or I'd wager have any desire for -- pictures.

  12. #12
    It's not simple. It's commercial /s chracatoa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Near Puget Sound, in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
    Posts
    143
    Quote Originally Posted by cornflake View Post
    Agents are readers, not tiny children or people who pick up a book once in a while because they saw the movie or whatever. They don't need -- or I'd wager have any desire for -- pictures.
    I guess it varies from people to people. I'm very visual, and I was introduced to reading with books with illustrations. I grew up with Graphic Novels, and I still enjoy books with illustrations when introducing new chapters or parts to this day (e.g. The Graveyard Book). Mixed media, etc.

    I think that, in general, people are attracted to pictures. Social media is an example. Posts with pictures result in more interactions, even if it's just a picture with words. In terms of sale (think Amazon, YouTube): it doesn't guarantee a sale, since what matters is the product itself, or, in our case, the manuscript. But it gets the foot in the door.
    Iím used to type my posts without paying much attention to them, I overuse adverbs and often confuse words that are similar. Please PM me if you find something.

    Follow my journey from untalented writer to crude blogger here: Writing at Fire Woods Park.
    In-depth analysis of agents here: Query & Publish. DUN DUN.

  13. #13
    Three of a perfect pair. AW Moderator amergina's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    14,879
    Something you might not consider:

    How are agents consuming your query? If they're flipping through emailed queries on a phone while riding the subway in NYC, images aren't gonna impress. Not when what they want is the freaking story, not someone's graphic art.

    Bottom line: give agents what they ask for.
    Done: Syncopation -- Rockstars! Kink! Reunited snarky enemies to lovers!
    WIP: Counterpoint -- Indomitable Rock God who's secretly a twink falls for a geek who likes to tie men up.

    Latest Release: Close Quarter
    Coming December 2017: Outside the Lines

    Website * Twitter * Tumblr

    Please consider a paid subscription to AbsoluteWrite to help with site's upkeep!

  14. #14
    Perpetually in transit Helix's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Far North Queensland
    Posts
    6,291
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    I guess it varies from people to people. I'm very visual, and I was introduced to reading with books with illustrations. I grew up with Graphic Novels, and I still enjoy books with illustrations when introducing new chapters or parts to this day (e.g. The Graveyard Book). Mixed media, etc.

    I think that, in general, people are attracted to pictures. Social media is an example. Posts with pictures result in more interactions, even if it's just a picture with words. In terms of sale (think Amazon, YouTube): it doesn't guarantee a sale, since what matters is the product itself, or, in our case, the manuscript. But it gets the foot in the door.
    Agents are attracted to words. Specifically, the right words arranged in a pleasing order. If you're trying to flog a novel to an agent, sending unsolicited images will probably end up with your work getting a boot out of the door. And how would an agent know that it's not an unrequested dick pic?


  15. #15
    beef rank be frank's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    8,793
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    But it gets the foot in the door.
    In this case, it's more likely to be a this person can't follow simple instructions auto-reject slammed door, I'd think.
    The early bird may catch the worm, but it's the second mouse that gets the cheese.

    here be all the query exercises

  16. #16
    That's PastRyAlien PastyAlien's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    The restaurant at the end of the multiverse
    Posts
    1,992
    Quote Originally Posted by Helix View Post
    And how would an agent know that it's not an unrequested dick pic?
    But what if agents ask for a submission "package"?
    NEW! Playing for Keeps - Come and rate my Quantum Shorts flash-fiction entry!

    --
    Website
    Twitter

  17. #17
    practical experience, FTW cornflake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    13,787
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    I guess it varies from people to people. I'm very visual, and I was introduced to reading with books with illustrations. I grew up with Graphic Novels, and I still enjoy books with illustrations when introducing new chapters or parts to this day (e.g. The Graveyard Book). Mixed media, etc.

    I think that, in general, people are attracted to pictures. Social media is an example. Posts with pictures result in more interactions, even if it's just a picture with words. In terms of sale (think Amazon, YouTube): it doesn't guarantee a sale, since what matters is the product itself, or, in our case, the manuscript. But it gets the foot in the door.
    If it's a product, I want to see it.

    If it's a book, I don't.

    Sure, people vary, but agents are people who have decided to spend their lives involved in the written word.

    I hate video online instead of text, almost never watch youtubes people link to, unless it's just a clip of cute animals or something, never when it's a story or report that could be text, that drives me batty.

    Notice how text-driven the site you're on is, without the giant sigs, blinky avatars, tons of meme posts? There's a reason.

    I'm probably further to one end of the text/pics-videos spectrum than some people, but I'd wager most agents are sitting next to me.

  18. #18
    No, you're the grease monkey. Fruitbat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Swinging from the tree tops
    Posts
    11,841
    [QUOTE=chracatoa;10294687]Clearly it's a bad idea based on all the replies. I was just curious about it./QUOTE]

    I deleted my earlier post after seeing that you had posted the sentence above.

    But then your post/s after that seem to possibly contradict that statement and to continue on with why it would be a good idea to include pictures with your queries?

    So, I'm a bit confused about where you stand in the discussion at this point. I'll just add that of course you can always send pictures to agents anyway if you want to. But, there is a lot of actual industry experience on this forum. They are telling you how things really go, not just personal opinions. Good luck.
    Last edited by Fruitbat; 11-05-2017 at 10:17 AM.
    Story Prompts That Work: 52 Detailed, Tested Story Starters for Short Stories and Flash Fiction (for Adults and Teens)
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...mpts+that+work

    Writing Flash Fiction: How to Write Very Short Stories and Get Them Published
    http://www.amazon.com/Writing-Flash-...0670797&sr=1-1

    Coffee House Lies: 100 Cups of Flash Fiction:
    http://www.amazon.com/Coffee-House-L...fee+house+lies

    Blog: http://carlyberg.com/

  19. #19
    No, you're the grease monkey. Fruitbat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Swinging from the tree tops
    Posts
    11,841
    Quote Originally Posted by Helix View Post
    ... And how would an agent know that it's not an unrequested dick pic?
    As opposed to the dick pics they did request? :p
    Last edited by Fruitbat; 11-05-2017 at 12:28 PM.
    Story Prompts That Work: 52 Detailed, Tested Story Starters for Short Stories and Flash Fiction (for Adults and Teens)
    https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_n...mpts+that+work

    Writing Flash Fiction: How to Write Very Short Stories and Get Them Published
    http://www.amazon.com/Writing-Flash-...0670797&sr=1-1

    Coffee House Lies: 100 Cups of Flash Fiction:
    http://www.amazon.com/Coffee-House-L...fee+house+lies

    Blog: http://carlyberg.com/

  20. #20
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    In chaos
    Posts
    21,555
    I agree with everyone: don't send pictures. They won't help, because agents are only interested in the book you've written.

  21. #21
    Who's going for a beer? waylander's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    London, UK
    Posts
    6,678
    Quote Originally Posted by PastyAlien View Post
    But what if agents ask for a submission "package"?
    Then you look very carefully at the agent's guidelines to see what their version of a package consists of and send them that. I guarantee it will not include your concept of the cover art, yourself in swimwear or any other pictures

  22. #22
    I write novels
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    In the resistance
    Posts
    3,981
    Quote Originally Posted by PastyAlien View Post
    But what if agents ask for a submission "package"?
    I see what you did there.

  23. #23
    That's PastRyAlien PastyAlien's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    The restaurant at the end of the multiverse
    Posts
    1,992
    Quote Originally Posted by eqb View Post
    I see what you did there.
    Whew. Thought I was losing my touch there for a minute.
    NEW! Playing for Keeps - Come and rate my Quantum Shorts flash-fiction entry!

    --
    Website
    Twitter

  24. #24
    It's not simple. It's commercial /s chracatoa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Near Puget Sound, in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.
    Posts
    143
    [QUOTE=Fruitbat;10294813]
    Quote Originally Posted by chracatoa View Post
    Clearly it's a bad idea based on all the replies. I was just curious about it./QUOTE]

    I deleted my earlier post after seeing that you had posted the sentence above.

    But then your post/s after that seem to possibly contradict that statement and to continue on with why it would be a good idea to include pictures with your queries?

    So, I'm a bit confused about where you stand in the discussion at this point. I'll just add that of course you can always send pictures to agents anyway if you want to. But, there is a lot of actual industry experience on this forum. They are telling you how things really go, not just personal opinions. Good luck.
    Oh, I meant that. It's a bad idea!

    I was just trying to explain why I was wondering about it. It started when I was preparing the media pitch for this week. When Cornflake said that few people would care about pictures, I described why some people are more visual and media in other formats (not in query letters) tends to become more visual as time goes by (Twitter is an example).

    But you're right, the thread is confusing and it's my fault. I went off on a tangent.
    Iím used to type my posts without paying much attention to them, I overuse adverbs and often confuse words that are similar. Please PM me if you find something.

    Follow my journey from untalented writer to crude blogger here: Writing at Fire Woods Park.
    In-depth analysis of agents here: Query & Publish. DUN DUN.

  25. #25
    Perpetually Tired ZachJPayne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Pinon Hills, CA
    Posts
    1,245
    I'm a former intern for a lit agent, and I spent most of my time going through the query box. So let me just echo the chorus in here:

    Please. Do not. Include. Pictures. In. Your. Query.

    Every benefit that you think it has? It doesn't. It looks amateurish. It doesn't attract attention, it doesn't stand out, it doesn't help. And for God's sake, don't send a cover, either. If your goal is to be professionally published (and it should be, if you're trying to retain an agent), your title/cover/a significant part of your book is sure to change.

    If I had a nickel for every time I've seen a good cover/photo/piece of artwork with a (non-picture book) query, I might be able to get a gumball. If it was an old-timey machine that had gumballs for a nickel. And that person's day job was as a graphic designer.

    Not to mention that, then, I have to play Russian roulette with my computer, deciding if I should even open a message with an attachment, since it might mean hours of purging a virus from my computer. Once burned and twice shy.

    Don't do it. Send what the agent asks for. Their guidelines are there for a reason.
    "She discovered that a great deal of the suffering in this world is due not so much to original sin,
    but to a kind of original stupidity, an unimaginative, stubborn stupidity." -- Georges Sand
    -*-
    http://medium.com/@zachjpayne

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Custom Search