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Shadow_Ferret
07-08-2008, 10:34 PM
At the beginning of the year I sent out 6 email submissions to various agents for my novel. I've received one rejection.

Should I assume the others are all rejections? Or should I assume they were lost in the ethers or someone's spam filter (mine or theirs)?

Should I move on to other agents, or resubmit on the assumption they never got them?

Calla Lily
07-08-2008, 10:37 PM
I'd do a heads-up email to see if they got them or got lost in the spam filter. 6 months is definitely worth a check.

dawinsor
07-08-2008, 10:37 PM
Assume these are rejections and be pleasantly surprised if they're not. Move on and submit to others, though before you do that, you might want to put your query in the Share Your Work section. That way you'll have a better idea of whether it was the query itself that netted you no nibbles this time.

Karen Duvall
07-08-2008, 10:38 PM
Ed, I think you should move on. I have 24 non-responders to my queries in my QueryTracker.net database. Their loss. Ha! :tongue And that's how you should look at it. You've got something great to offer, and if they don't recognize it, well, it's time to find someone who will.

Shadow_Ferret
07-08-2008, 10:42 PM
though before you do that, you might want to put your query in the Share Your Work section. That way you'll have a better idea of whether it was the query itself that netted you no nibbles this time.
I had gotten a few requests for partials and a full off this one. Don't think its the query.

cate townsend
07-08-2008, 10:47 PM
I'd do a heads-up email to see if they got them or got lost in the spam filter. 6 months is definitely worth a check.

Yes, and I also agree with Dawinsor and Karen. I've sent both email and hard copy queries with SASEs, and it seems I have better luck with responses via the snail mail submissions. Why? Maybe agents feel more obligated to provide a response when there's an SASE involved, as opposed to just another query in the inbox that can easily be deleted or ignored.

If an agent doesn't specify their preference, I always send hard copy. Out of all the queries I've sent this way, only one SASE never made it back, and that was after I found out the agent left the biz to pursue another career.

Phaeal
07-08-2008, 11:18 PM
Grrr, my friend just got back her SASE from a very well-regarded agent. The problem? The envelope was empty. No letter, no card. Nada.

I expect a minion made an error and suggested that she politely report the omission via email. She probably won't, though.

I have ranted elsewhere about no responses to email queries. Given you can set up a rejection auto-response that would require you to click one key, I think there's no excuse for not replying at all. Limbo is not a nice place to put someone into.

lkp
07-09-2008, 01:16 AM
Silence means rejection for a *lot* of agents who accept e-mail. I'd move on and query more people.

scope
07-09-2008, 07:10 AM
Definitely move on. At the same time, if you wish, you could inquire the 5 who haven't replied in 6 months.

aka eraser
07-09-2008, 10:23 AM
Yep. Move on, but do check with the Limbo 5 if you need to for your peace of mind.

For an initial query, to agent or publisher, I'd consider 6-8 weeks of silence to mean "Nope. Not for us." (expressed the Lazy Way) and I'd be looking for greener pastures.

Puma
07-09-2008, 02:05 PM
My experience has been a 40% no response rate to e-mail queries. I've had two that showed up with responses almost a year after my initial submission. My gut feel is that if you don't hear on an e-mail query within the first week, there's a good chance you won't. It should be a no-brainer for the agents, either yes, they're interested and want to see a chapter or no, they're not, thank you very much. I'm not sure why there should really be any more than that involved in the decision. But, yes, back to the original question - move on. If you do anything at all about those five, I'd re-query. Puma

Nakhlasmoke
07-09-2008, 03:10 PM
With email i had an over 50% no-response rate - even from agents who had a policy to respond to every submission.


Shrug and move on, that's all I can say. Sucks though.

Mystic Blossom
07-09-2008, 04:38 PM
E-mail queries are so iffy, because most agents who accept e-mail have a policy of not responding to queries they're not interested in, but there's no guarantee that your query made it to their inbox in the first place. My personal advice is to move on for now. Submit to other places, and then in a few months if you've changed your work enough, submit to the unresponding five, or the ones out of them you really would want to work with.

MsJudy
07-09-2008, 09:26 PM
Check their policy. I know Andrea Brown, for one, is up front--you'll hear from us if we're interested. If you don't hear in 6 weeks, assume we're not and move on. (Although I did get a personal reject from one of their agents, so maybe that means it was better than most, just not good enough....?)

Phaeal
07-09-2008, 10:33 PM
No response to email queries will stay in my book of unwarranted rudenesses. To reply is just too easy to warrant the omission. Not that the degree of difficulty in performing a courtesy excuses any rudeness.

Sigh. Noblesse oblige, and the converse.

Shadow_Ferret
07-17-2008, 12:06 AM
No response to email queries will stay in my book of unwarranted rudenesses. To reply is just too easy to warrant the omission. Not that the degree of difficulty in performing a courtesy excuses any rudeness.

Sigh. Noblesse oblige, and the converse.
Right. Rude.

How hard is it to hit reply and type "Not for us?"

nerds
07-22-2008, 01:45 AM
And it doesn't even have to be typed - it's just set to an auto-reply. I've only just started down Query Lane, and I've set up a chart of my own design to track how it all pans out. Of the sixteen e-queries I've sent out five of those agencies say up front on their sites that no reply within X time means No, and I've got them indicated on my chart. Of the remaining 11, I've had four rejections back within 48 hours, and we'll see what the rest do or don't do.

I don't mind no reply meaning No. But I think any agency with that policy should just say so, with a timeframe, right up front where you'll notice it and know what to expect.

triceretops
07-22-2008, 11:34 AM
I agree that the limbo thing sucks. Non-responders irritate me. So I hunt them down and verify submission--taking up their time AGAIN, since they neglected me in the beginning. So it's counter-productive for them to ignore me. Cause I'm going to go right back in there and tie 'em up again.

Rant.

Tri