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PurpleClover
12-26-2008, 07:50 AM
So I queried an agent and their email/website states "if no response in 6 weeks, assume no interest..." and its been 3.

My query included a full manuscript since it was a picture book (actually two). I said it was exclusive for 4 weeks. Will I most likely get a response (even negative) because it was exclusive, or will it be treated as any other query and possibly have no response regardless of if it was exclusive or not?

On a side note, since I said it was exclusive, does that apply to any other manuscripts as well? I just finished another MG ms and don't know if I need to hold it until the time is up on the picture books...I mean I would assume it would be rude to go ahead but I don't know...I'm confused!

This agent is my top choice and I don't want to screw it up but I also don't want to wait for something that isn't there...

I feel like that teenager with a huge crush on someone that doesn't even know they're alive! :( maybe I should be writing about that...

ChaosTitan
12-26-2008, 08:00 AM
I don't know if querying picture books differs from other books, so here goes.

First question: Does this agent accept unsolicited submissions? Because by sending the manuscript along with the query, you've sent them an unsolicited submission. If they aren't accepted, then you've probably been rejected.

About "exclusives." You can't actually grant an exclusive on a manuscript by yourself. If an agent wants to see material (ie, the full manuscript), they will ask you for it. If they want it on an exclusive basis, they will also ask you for it when they request the manuscript.

Yvettesgonefishing
12-26-2008, 10:45 AM
I'm a noob to this site too and don't know the ins and outs yet either, but Chaos is right. It's only an exclusive if the agent has requested one.

If they're not already inclined to respond to all submissions (and that's the way it appears, since their site says "if no response in 6 weeks, assume no interest..."), then they won't be compelled to respond when a writer submits their MS to them as an exclusive. If they requested an exclusive, I would expect that they'd get back to you.

I have my fingers crossed for you. I'd love to hear how this turns out. Hopefully they show interest. :)

Danthia
12-26-2008, 06:01 PM
Your other manuscripts are separate from each other. Each query is its own book, and will stand or fall on its own merit. Picture books may be different, but traditionally it's one book at a time on submissions. If the book is a series, you can mention that in your closer, but you'd only query with the first book.

As Chaos said, it's the agent/editor who asks for exclusives, and the author says yes or no. An unsolicited query or ms. is treated no differently that any other unsolicited query or ms. Wait four weeks (since you said it was exclusive you really should follow that) then query more agents and editors. If you haven't heard anything from this agent after six weeks, assume no as their site says.

If you plan to submit the new MG novel to the same agent, wait a few months, then query. You don't want to confuse them by having two projects there at the same time. It also might make them feel like you're flooding them with all your work, which can make an agent a little leery.

Most importantly, if you just finished your MG novel, don't send it out right away. You'll want time to revise and polish and work on your query letter before you start submitting. Unless of course, "just finished" means you just completed that long revisions stage. Then start querying agents when you want.

Toothpaste
12-26-2008, 08:25 PM
And also stop granting exclusives before an agent/editor requests one. What is the point of doing that except to make your life harder? You won't flatter an agent/editor into wanting to sign you because you gave them an exclusive, and in the mean time you have paralysed youself because you won't be able to send out any more submissions while you wait. There are even some agents out there who don't approve of exclusives for that very reason, that it is unfair to the author. Only grant an exclusive if it is asked of you, otherwise, query widely.

trickywoo
12-26-2008, 08:57 PM
I agree with the other posters. I was confused about this at first, too, and wasn't sure if I should query exclusively since some agents prefer "exclusives". But I discovered this doesn't refer to the initial query. The only children's agency I came across that requested a full manuscript exclusively with the initial query was the Adams Literary Agency. So, if you've queried them, then follow their guidelines and wait to hear from them.

Otherwise, send out your queries to whomever you want, and then when they request to see a partial or full of your manuscript you can decide if you want to offer it to them on an exclusive basis. Good luck!

PurpleClover
12-26-2008, 11:30 PM
I don't know if querying picture books differs from other books, so here goes.

First question: Does this agent accept unsolicited submissions? Because by sending the manuscript along with the query, you've sent them an unsolicited submission. If they aren't accepted, then you've probably been rejected.

About "exclusives." You can't actually grant an exclusive on a manuscript by yourself. If an agent wants to see material (ie, the full manuscript), they will ask you for it. If they want it on an exclusive basis, they will also ask you for it when they request the manuscript.


Thanks so much for the response. I think I did shoot myself in the foot. They do accept unsolited (Andrea Brown)...But the website said for picture books to send the full MS and that if you are going to have a simultaneous submission it's okay but only professional to let them know in advance. I vaguely recall some verbiage about every agent loves exclusives or something like that. So basically I was trying to follow the guidelines to every letter and bend over backwards.

I think instead it probably just made me look like a doofus. :(

I have been going over and tweaking my MG ms and don't think it's quite ready but I was hoping i could at least query it. I may be posting the query soon to get some thoughts/opinions.

PurpleClover
12-26-2008, 11:34 PM
And also stop granting exclusives before an agent/editor requests one. What is the point of doing that except to make your life harder? You won't flatter an agent/editor into wanting to sign you because you gave them an exclusive, and in the mean time you have paralysed youself because you won't be able to send out any more submissions while you wait. There are even some agents out there who don't approve of exclusives for that very reason, that it is unfair to the author. Only grant an exclusive if it is asked of you, otherwise, query widely.


Thanks, I plan to take that advice. Originally I read somewhere (lord I've visited so many agent blogs/sites) and many of them say that it can take longer to respond if its not exclusive and if it is they may it a priority. But I'm sure not all agents are the same. It was my first query, so one mistake down...many more to go.

PurpleClover
12-26-2008, 11:40 PM
Thanks so much Danthia. This is good advice. I'll wait out the rest of my "exclusive" and then start querying as soon as the revisions are complete.

I didn't know how the exclusive thing worked...as a matter of fact I came across someone's blog and saw that they said the agent requested an exclusive for 3 weeks after getting a full. I was like...oh okay..if this was after the query than most likely that person had sent to several. DUH. I guess because its a picture book and the full ms is in the email it made it confusing for me!

scope
12-27-2008, 04:33 AM
So I queried an agent and their email/website states "if no response in 6 weeks, assume no interest..." and its been 3.

My query included a full manuscript since it was a picture book (actually two). I said it was exclusive for 4 weeks. Will I most likely get a response (even negative) because it was exclusive, or will it be treated as any other query and possibly have no response regardless of if it was exclusive or not?

Writers only offer exclusives on behest of the agent and/or publisher. That is, after a writer reads the guidelines of an agent and/or publisher s/he may discover that they will only consider exclusive material.
Now the writer has a decisions to make -- grant an exclusive and be unable to offer the work to others? If so, how long should the period of exclusivity be?

On the other hand, a writer may send a query to an agent and/or publisher where there's no exclusivity involved. Should the agent and/or publisher be interested enough to ask the writer to send in the full on an exclusive basis, it's now decision time for the writer. Grant exclusivity, and if so, for how long?.

On a side note, since I said it was exclusive, does that apply to any other manuscripts as well?

No.

I just finished another MG ms and don't know if I need to hold it until the time is up on the picture books...I mean I would assume it would be rude to go ahead but I don't know...I'm confused!



Send one at at time and hope to get at least helpful feedback. Don't limit yourself to one agent or pubisher at a time. Submit to many.

Danthia
12-27-2008, 07:02 PM
For what it's worth, you probably didn't shoot yourself in the foot too much. If the stories are good, most agents will overlook little things like that. They know mistakes happen, and it's usually when you fall into the "clueless unprofessional" zone that it's a problem. As long as you approach everything professionally, you should be okay even with a mishap here and there.