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tylerjfrancke
06-07-2013, 09:08 PM
Hey all,

I've seen some threads on this, but some of them are a couple years dated, so I just wanted to post and see if anyone has some new insight or recent experiences they might want to share.

After a couple months of rejections, I've found an agent who was interested in viewing my full manuscript. I freaked out, sent a few text messages to friends and family that had way too many exclamation points in them, calmed down and sent it in.

I know that experiences with this can vary wildly, but this is all new to me, so any insight you guys have to offer would be helpful and interesting. That being said, here's what I'm wondering:

- What does this mean?

- What does it not mean?

- What should I realistically expect to come out of this, if anything?

- Is there anything I should do or consider doing while I'm waiting to hear something?

Thank you!

Old Hack
06-07-2013, 09:28 PM
It means that the agent was interested in the query you sent, and if she likes your book she might offer representation.

All you can do now is wait, and work on your next book.

Good luck!

Terie
06-07-2013, 09:31 PM
- What does this mean?

It means the agent liked what they saw in your query and is interested in seeing more, to see if they might want to offer representation.


- What does it not mean?

It doesn't mean they WILL offer representation.


- What should I realistically expect to come out of this, if anything?

Nothing is the easiest thing to expect.


- Is there anything I should do or consider doing while I'm waiting to hear something?

Keep querying, and keep working on your next book.

Good luck!

Little Ming
06-07-2013, 09:31 PM
Hey all,

I've seen some threads on this, but some of them are a couple years dated, so I just wanted to post and see if anyone has some new insight or recent experiences they might want to share.

After a couple months of rejections, I've found an agent who was interested in viewing my full manuscript. I freaked out, sent a few text messages to friends and family that had way too many exclamation points in them, calmed down and sent it in.

I know that experiences with this can vary wildly, but this is all new to me, so any insight you guys have to offer would be helpful and interesting. That being said, here's what I'm wondering:

- What does this mean? The agent is interested in your query/synopsis/opening pages to read your MS (at least until the agent stops ;)).

- What does it not mean? The agent *will* offer representation. (I mean, the agent *might*, but it's not a guarantee.)

- What should I realistically expect to come out of this, if anything? Hope for the best (offer), but prepare for the worst (rejection, so keep querying).

- Is there anything I should do or consider doing while I'm waiting to hear something? Unless the agent has an exclusive (in which case you have to set a time limit) then continue querying other agents. A full request is good, but again, you have to prepare for the worst (rejection).

Write the next book.

Thank you!

Congrats! :partyguy:

Terie
06-07-2013, 09:35 PM
Gosh, too bad we're all giving such different answers and such diverse advice! ;) LOL!!!!

tylerjfrancke
06-07-2013, 09:38 PM
Gosh, too bad we're all giving such different answers and such diverse advice! ;) LOL!!!!

LOL. Yes, after careful study, I believe I am beginning to detect a pattern in the responses. ;)

tylerjfrancke
06-07-2013, 09:43 PM
I know a rejection is a very real possibility (and probably the most likely scenario). Follow-up question, though: In your experience, do the rejections that come from an agent that has seen your full manuscript tend to contain more helpful information and criticism?

Even that would be really nice at this point. Most of the rejections I've gotten (based on queries and/or short samples) have been form letters. The few that weren't were along the lines of "I think it's a good project, but I'm not the best agent/not in the right market," which I'm guessing is the literary-industry equivalent of "It's not you, it's me." :)

Siri Kirpal
06-07-2013, 09:48 PM
I know a rejection is a very real possibility (and probably the most likely scenario). Follow-up question, though: In your experience, do the rejections that come from an agent that has seen your full manuscript tend to contain more helpful information and criticism?

Even that would be really nice at this point. Most of the rejections I've gotten (based on queries and/or short samples) have been form letters. The few that weren't were along the lines of "I think it's a good project, but I'm not the best agent/not in the right market," which I'm guessing is the literary-industry equivalent of "It's not you, it's me." :)

Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

Sometimes agents give comments, but don't count on it. A good agent who rejects a full will say so. A not-so-good one won't.

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

tylerjfrancke
06-07-2013, 09:51 PM
Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

Sometimes agents give comments, but don't count on it. A good agent who rejects a full will say so. A not-so-good one won't.

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

Thanks for your thoughts! I must ask: Is that quote on your sig an original? I really like it! :)

Old Hack
06-07-2013, 09:52 PM
I've had all sorts of rejections. Some have been little more than a no, while others have given me all sorts of helpful feedback. It's impossible to say which sort you'll get.

I hope you've checked the agent out thoroughly, and have made sure he or she is reputable and effective.

Drachen Jager
06-07-2013, 09:54 PM
Lots of agents don't even send rejections on fulls.

Here is a typical breakdown of what happens with a full off a query (numbers are guesstimates). Note fulls off a partial are much more significant.

1% = Offer of representation, or R&R
40% = Rejection, but they never respond to you.
50% = Form rejection with little or no commentary.
9% = Rejection with some useful comments.

Phaeal
06-07-2013, 09:58 PM
I had fulls that came back with a few comments. I had fulls that arrived with form rejections. I had fulls on which I never heard back from the agent, after two nudges.

And I had the full my agent read overnight and offered rep the next day. Hit the right desk, this literary urban legend can really come true. ;)

Unless the agent wants you to consider rewriting and resubbing, you're not likely to get much in the way of comments. If you do get them, it's a gift. Send back a sincere thank you.

Always, while waiting, be writing the next book. Because if an agent is thinking of making an offer, one of the first questions he's likely to ask is: What are you working on now?

If you have a series in mind, a very good thing to do at this point is to write a proposal for the next book or two. This will prove you have more than one book in you, and that you know where you're heading. You'll inspire trust in your agent, and he can submit the proposals to editors along with the first MS in order to entice a multi-book deal. My proposals are detailed synopses, five-ten pages long in general, written with as much flair as I can pound into them with a sledgehammer.

Even if your next book isn't related to the first one, having proposals for another book or two would be useful.

kkbe
06-07-2013, 10:08 PM
Everything they said. I'm in your shoes, waiting and wondering. Best thing for me is to work on my latest, trying not to fret. I realize that chances are slim that anything will come of those full requests but you never know.

It's a step in the right direction, for sure. No telling where that train's going but at least you're on the right track.

Terie
06-07-2013, 10:35 PM
Lots of agents don't even send rejections on fulls.

Here is a typical breakdown of what happens with a full off a query (numbers are guesstimates). Note fulls off a partial are much more significant.

1% = Offer of representation, or R&R
40% = Rejection, but they never respond to you.
50% = Form rejection with little or no commentary.
9% = Rejection with some useful comments.

(bolding mine)

Not my experience or anyone I know. A few agents don't even send rejections on fulls, but I don't think we've reached anywhere near 'lots' yet, certainly not 40%.

Your 'guesstimate' is unhelpful and mostly serves to prove the saying that most statistics are made up.

tylerjfrancke
06-07-2013, 10:52 PM
(bolding mine)

Not my experience or anyone I know. A few agents don't even send rejections on fulls, but I don't think we've reached anywhere near 'lots' yet, certainly not 40%.

Your 'guesstimate' is unhelpful and mostly serves to prove the saying that most statistics are made up.

What has been your experience, Terie?

Aggy B.
06-07-2013, 11:00 PM
Lots of agents don't even send rejections on fulls.

Here is a typical breakdown of what happens with a full off a query (numbers are guesstimates). Note fulls off a partial are much more significant.

1% = Offer of representation, or R&R
40% = Rejection, but they never respond to you.
50% = Form rejection with little or no commentary.
9% = Rejection with some useful comments.

Yeah, I'm curious about this. Are the numbers loosely based off your own experience? Or just pulled out of... somewhere?

It's important to recognize that there are a large portion of folks who will report a submission/full request but never report the rejection even if they do get one.

How do I know that? It's what happens in the short story markets. Editors who actually bother to check their own submission stats against some of the submission stat compilers (like Duotrope or The Grinder) repeatedly note that the number of submissions even reported is much smaller than what they actually receive (sometimes as little as 20%) and the number of rejections reported is an even smaller percentage.

It makes sense, of course. Folks would rather talk about their success than their string of "failures".

Terie
06-07-2013, 11:02 PM
What has been your experience, Terie?

On my last query-go-round, I had three requests for partials and on those received two form rejections and one personal rejection with an invitation to submit future work. I had four requests for fulls and on those received two form rejections and two personal rejections with invitations to submit future work.

While 'lots' of agents have moved to a no-response-means-no on queries, very few do that on fulls.

Drachen Jager
06-07-2013, 11:54 PM
Well if other people want to bold my words, I'll give it a go as well.


Lots of agents don't even send rejections on fulls.

Here is a typical breakdown of what happens with a full off a query (numbers are guesstimates). Note fulls off a partial are much more significant.

1% = Offer of representation, or R&R
40% = Rejection, but they never respond to you.
50% = Form rejection with little or no commentary.
9% = Rejection with some useful comments.

I added two caveats.

1) I'm talking about fulls from a query, not fulls from a partial, or fulls where part of the manuscript was sent with the query.
2) Yes, I pulled the numbers out of my ass. I said I pulled the numbers out of my ass. That's what a guesstimate is!

Any more questions? :tongue

mayqueen
06-08-2013, 02:28 AM
I didn't get a lot of comments on my full rejections during my last round of querying, but I did get an R&R. (The comments I did get didn't tell a whole lot, either.)

The best thing you can do now is 1) make sure your query is the best that it can possibly be so your full hits as many agents' desks as possible (so get into QLH!!) and 2) work on the next manuscript.

Ken
06-08-2013, 03:13 AM
... check out querytracker.com.
They have a comment section for individual agents.
Sometimes people who've sub'd say how agents responded,
including with fulls.
Also says how long replies took.
G'luck.

Siri Kirpal
06-08-2013, 03:43 AM
Thanks for your thoughts! I must ask: Is that quote on your sig an original? I really like it! :)

Sat Nam! (literally "Truth Name"--a Sikh greeting)

Yes, the quote's by yours truly. [Takes a bow.]

Blessings,

Siri Kirpal

Luzoni
06-08-2013, 05:55 AM
... check out querytracker.com.
They have a comment section for individual agents.
Sometimes people who've sub'd say how agents responded,
including with fulls.
Also says how long replies took.
G'luck.

I can't recommend Query tracker (and this site, but clearly you already know about that!) enough. Knowing what to expect (typically) in wait time, your odds, and hearing feedback from others, really helped with the waiting. And, before you ask, my wait was 3 months, but as others have said that'll vary widely.

As for the debate on rejections for fulls, I wouldn't know because my first request for a full became an offer. So my experience isn't standard, I was very lucky! But I expected rejection the whole time, and I'll counsel you to do the same. That way you can only be pleasantly surprised (read: ecstatic) if it's yes and if it's no you can shrug it off because you expected as much. It sounds pessimistic, but it really helped me go on with my life during that long 3 months!

Good luck!! :D

Donna Pudick
06-13-2013, 07:29 PM
Agents often don't comment on rejected fulls. Depends on how many they're reading at the time. We set aside one week every month for readings, and sometimes get feedback from our readers. But we rarely pass those on to the authors, as feedback too often results in blowback. We can do without the drama.

november_rain
06-17-2013, 01:50 AM
- What does this mean?

The agent is interested.

- What does it not mean?

Anything else.

- What should I realistically expect to come out of this, if anything?

Either representation, or nothing. Sorry for being harsh :(

- Is there anything I should do or consider doing while I'm waiting to hear something?

Write, query other agents...but don't hassle the one reviewing your work unless it's been a VERY long time.