Sunday, November 29, 2009

Query Letter Confusion

General advice dictates sending one query letter at a time and waiting for a response before sending another one. Response times vary - I've had 1 week waits and I've had 6 month waits.

Unsure what to do about the following.

January 2009 - I sent a query (with SASE) for book#1 to Editor

June 2009 - I hadn't received a response. Got a chance to talk to the Editor of that line, and she said to resend query for book#1 if I hadn't heard in 4 months.

June 2009 - Since it had been six months, I resent my query for book#1 (with SASE)

June 2009 - won contest and was invited to send query for book#2.

July 2009 - mailed query for book#2 (with SASE).

October 2009 - received form letter rejection not mentioning the title of the book (Dear Writer...).

Which book was rejected? Book#1? Book#2? Both?

As a writer, I try to be respectful of editors/agents time and not bother them with redundant queries, but in this case, I don't know how to proceed. I feel as though I can't send any *new* work since I still have an unresponded to query out there (unless the form rejection was for both).

How long should I wait before I chalk it up to a loss and send something new?

2 comments:

  1. I'd say you're safe to query with another project. That's too bad the wait is so long. But I can see why you'd only query one at a time when you're looking at sending to the same publisher.

    I'm feeling lucky that with agents I feel confident in query multiple agencies at once. I try to have at least 15 agent queries out at any given time.

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  2. For agents, it's okay to sent to many at once (and generally expected), but when going directly to the publisher, it's an unwritten rule to send one at a time. I almost didn't send my contest request right away because I was worried about breaking the rule, but I also didn't want the Editor to think I wasn't taking her request seriously.

    rock - me - hard place ?

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