View Full Version : Request for Feedback

08-15-2013, 09:45 AM
So I recently heard got a rejection from an agent who read my full manuscript. She didn't provide very helpful feedback; she only said she didn't get "swept away by the voice".

I queried her 3 months ago with the firth ten pages, and then she asked to see the full manuscript. I nudged a few days ago, and she responded with a very short response saying no (and the phrase above).

Is it appropriate for me to ask her for a little bit more feedback, given the fact that she requested the whole manuscript? I've never gotten to this stage before, so I'd like if I can ask her so that I know what I need to change, if anything.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. :)


08-15-2013, 10:02 AM
Sometimes that's really all it is. Agents have to work for free until they sell something, so they have to really love it work for free. (And I can't believe I just said that, but it's true.)

As for asking, you can ask. That doesn't mean you should. I asked once and wish I hadn't because there wasn't anything specific. And I kind of wish there had been. And that sucked.

08-15-2013, 10:27 AM
In this case I wouldn't ask. "I didn't get swept away by the voice' means you would have to change your whole writing style to convince this one agent.
Keep querying.

08-15-2013, 10:49 AM
It's actually never appropriate to ask for more feedback on a rejection. Besides, that could be the form letter the agent uses for requested manuscripts (vs the one they use for rejected queries).

As Waylander said, move on to the next agent on your list.

08-15-2013, 05:59 PM
Comments below may strike you as cynical, but I believe they're actually practical. In any case, I have long experience with rejections, agent and otherwise. ;)

In these days of electronic submissions, a full MS is no more cumbersome for the agent to handle or expensive for you to send than a partial MS. So I don't think we can read more interest into a full request -- sending it right off the bat is convenient for both parties. We also can't assume that because the agent gets the whole MS, she's necessarily going to read it all. One thing's for sure: she'll read exactly as much as keeps her interested in the book as a potential sale.

This agent is not interested. Not even enough interested to ask for revision and resubmission. Leave her alone and keep querying until you hit the right desk.

Any comments a rejecting agent (or editor) gives the writer is a gift. Would you write to a stranger begging for a present? If not, well, there you are.

08-15-2013, 06:12 PM
Don't ask.

The reality of querying is that you send things to agents they don't get paid to read. They don't owe the writers anything, and most don't even bother with saying "no," anymore. You get silence.

A slightly less blunt answer is that it's possible the agent doesn't have a concrete reason to reject the novel, they only know it's one they couldn't sell in your best interest. Another agent might click with the voice and sell it spectacularly. It's a matter of preference.

Susan Littlefield
08-15-2013, 06:32 PM
I would not ask.. No means no.

08-15-2013, 08:41 PM
Don't ask. It's very likely that the agent genuinely just didn't get swept away by your manuscript. That doesn't mean that someone else won't. It just means it wasn't a good fit. Keep querying! It's a promising sign the agent requested the full. Make sure your manuscript is as strong as it can be through utilizing QLH, beta-readers you trust, and lots of your own editing.

08-16-2013, 01:10 AM
Thanks everyone!