I did it! I’ve send off my first submissions for my novel. Queries went out to agents this morning and to two editors I met at the SCBWI Houston conference. I’ll let you know the results.
As I was finishing up these submissions, I was doing some more final research on the agents and came across a site that I had heard about at my critique group and promptly forgot: QueryTracker.net. The site offers similar research opportunities as AgentQuery.com, which I used to get my master list of agents, except, I believe, QueryTracker.net also tracks response times from agents.
I came across the site through a blog I found called Literary Rambles, which posts some really useful agent spotlights. The blog’s writer, Casey McCormick, has compiled info and links for a bunch of agents, some which aren’t very easy to find online, so thanks, Casey. I’ve put her blog in my blog roll under Blogs By Writers, so check it out.
But in her latest post, Casey talks about the importance of researching agents before you send to them, something I’ve talked about a lot on Day By Day Writer. Casey also provided a post in which QueryTracker.net’s Elana Johnson lays out how to research agents.
It’s really worth it to do this work. Not only do targeted query letters save time for you and the agent, you’ll get fewer automatic rejections. Rejections aren’t nice anytime, so why put yourself in the path of one by sending to an agent who doesn’t handle the kind of books you write? Research, research, research.