Saturday, June 25, 2011


Many of us have been at this fragile point in our writing careers while in pursuit of publication. Where is that exactly? At the point where you send out query letter after query letter to potential Literary Agents and Publishing houses, politely asking (actually almost begging) them to represent you.

I am actually busy with my second round of querying (the first one was brutal) and I thought why not share a few of my personal don’ts while waiting for a query response.

Do not check your email every 5 minutes.
This one is very hard I know. I am still guilty of doing it but truthfully, every time that inbox is empty you get depressed.

Do not go into a junk food binge.
Ooohhh! This one is really tough too, but just think of what all that junk food is going to do to your waistline. I gained a few kilos and it was not pretty…trust me.

Do not pout and walk around in your pajamas for days on end.
Yep, this is me too. It actually contributes to that low and sad feeling. Resulting in the do not point mentioned above.

Do not quit your writing.
Ding, Ding, Ding, bells of familiarity are ringing. I always consider quitting after I get a rejection or whenever I do not even get an email back at all. Everyone knows that the one’s who persevere are the one’s getting want they want in the end…or so I am told.

Do not harass or stalk the queried parties.
I know this is very tempting, but unless you want to be blacklisted or thought of as a psycho, please avoid this step entirely.

Do not get disheartened.
Ridiculous I know, but if it helps, know that all the great writers before us have gone through the same crap. When a rejection letter arrives, look at it purely as a professional letter and not like a personal “You suck” attack. I still find it hard to process at times, but I am trying really hard not to take everything to heart.

Good luck with all the queries everyone and remember not to give up.


  1. It is unbearable to get rejection letters. Especially after you do all your research on the publisher (or agent) and think for sure you picked the right one. I read somewhere that it's a good idea to send out 10 queries at once and then do ten again when the first 10 get rejected just to expedite the process of getting to the 20th person who gets it. I don't know if that's true, but it sounds reasonable.

    If I needed a job, I would apply for more than one. Query letters are effectively job applications, but we have done the work up front.

  2. All great tips. Although I do like junk food and rarely wait for an opportunity to obsess to eat poorly.
    Edge of Your Seat Romance

  3. Tonja - Good advice about the amount of queries. Thank you. Here I was sending five per month. 10 means getting to a lot more people in a lot less time. Thank you! And I agree completely about it being like a job application.

    Raquel - I love junk food too! But I can't eat it as much as I used to. Health problems and all that stuff. Thanks for stopping over.

  4. I think writers are just masochists at heart. We love putting ourselves and our characters through the torture chambers of life. I'm not sure if its normal but I'm rolling with it too. Great advice on all levels. I made the mistake over a year ago of querying too early. Maybe when I'm done, if I'm ever done with revisions, I'll handle the process better this time. Ya know, less wine, I mean whine.

  5. T.C. Mckee - I know how you feel with the revisions. I edited my novel for a year and a half. The funny thing is that it only took me 3 months to write. I hope the query process will be better for you this time around. And I enjoy both wine and whine. Hahah!


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