The Agent Hunt
Yesterday Tess Gerritson posted a link to this post on the Killer Year blog by author Marcus Sakey. It's excellent advice and I'd recommend you to read it if you're looking for an agent.
I think I first queried agents in 2002. I got a (very) few requests for partials and full manuscripts. But ultimately, no agent. When I wrote the next book, I queried agents again. I got a few more requests. Still, no agent.
In January of this year, I queried agents for the fifth time. I received what I consider excellent response. 25% of the agents requested a partial or full manuscript. That doesn't sound like a lot but it is. Because, I queried widely. Yes, I research agents as much as I can, but some are pretty quiet and about all I can glean from the internet is that they represent certain genres. So, with that factored in, I'm going to get a lot of "not right for me" responses.
But even with a good response I still don't have an offer of representation.
So, what's the problem?
I'm guessing it's what I'm writing. I don't mean the genre or even the storyline. Just that the particular book I queried wasn't what they were looking for. And I have to admit that I had hesitations about the last book I queried. I think some parts are great and some parts are not. And the agents agreed with me.
But do I quit? Give up? Whine about it? No! Okay, maybe a little whining. But only to my closest friends who would never tell because we live by Vegas Rules in our little group.
So what do I do? I learn from this experience just like I learned from the first four. And I query again.
Don't give up. Ever.