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View Full Version : Is it okay to mention your sales numbers in a query letter to an agent?



Pisco Sour
07-03-2016, 10:12 PM
Or is it bad form? A writer friend who works in the book industry said I should pop down my sales figures in my endeavour to find an agent for my new book, but it feels a tad...uncomfortable. If it's a good idea to note sales on a query then what is the benchmark for 'success', eg 10K, 20K...20 million gazillion? I've had a few bites on my queries and requests for fulls, but if they don't pan out I'm thinking maybe I should list my sales numbers. Of course this is an entirely different book in a different genre, but I'm wondering if a proven track record of sales is good to mention to a prospective agent? My best selling novel has sold in five figures, and it's an ebook that was also picked up for audio. Not sure of the sales there yet though, but I did get a nice little advance. Thanks for your help. I'm new to querying agents and trying to figure it all out. :)

waylander
07-04-2016, 01:07 AM
Is it likely that the people who bought your previous work would buy this one? If it is, then mention the numbers.

Pisco Sour
07-04-2016, 10:19 AM
Nope, don't think so. This is a total change of genre from adult romance to YA (a spy novel with a hint of romance but it's only secondary thread to the main shaboom). Thanks for answering! :)

Aggy B.
07-04-2016, 04:24 PM
I would think, given the genres/categories are much different that you could hold off on mentioning sales numbers until you are actually talking to an agent. If it were me, I would certainly mention the already published book in your "professional/about me" paragraph, but the specifics on sales would be best kept 'til you are actually talking to an agent about your work and career. (I don't think the sales numbers are irrelevant, even given the switch in genre/category, but they would take up space in the query that should be focused on the new book, not the old one.)

Pisco Sour
07-05-2016, 10:54 AM
I would think, given the genres/categories are much different that you could hold off on mentioning sales numbers until you are actually talking to an agent. If it were me, I would certainly mention the already published book in your "professional/about me" paragraph, but the specifics on sales would be best kept 'til you are actually talking to an agent about your work and career. (I don't think the sales numbers are irrelevant, even given the switch in genre/category, but they would take up space in the query that should be focused on the new book, not the old one.)

Thanks for that! BTW just read your siggy and Of Lips and Tongue sounds like something my big sister would LOVE! Going to check it out for her.