I’ve spoken to a lot of people who are finishing up their novels (some of them from Nano) and are going to query their brains out during their Christmas vacations.
Me? Nope! No Way!
First of all, even though I am done, I want to get one more round of good solid beta reads in. But there is another reason.
I remember reading something a long time ago that made a ton of sence, and it really stuck with me. Oddly enough, I came across the article by accident the other day. (The link is below) Re-reading it again made me feel even better about my timeline skipping right over Christmas and starting to query in a few months.
Nathan made some really good points in this article. For those of you who aren’t familiar with Nathan Bransford, he used to be an agent, but recently left the agenting business and is now an author.
Nathan said there are not any good or bad times to query, with two exceptions. You can read the full article below, but for those of you who are terrified of little links, here it is in a nutshell:
Don’t query if you know the agent is out of the office. Also don’t query around major holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas, Hanukkah, etc.
The reason is that many people have off, and a lot of them are using their time to send out queries… to agents that are not there because they are on vacation, or are leaving for vacation. This means the agents are rushing through their submissions so they can finish before they leave, or they are just coming back to a pile of work that they have to RACE THROUGH to get caught up.
As Nathan said “take it from me — you don’t want to be part of a massive query pile when an agent is feeling a time crunch.”
“Ideally, sure, we’d give all queries equal time, consider every one similarly, whether we’re reading a pile of 10 or a pile of 500. Ideally.
“Reality: human nature is human nature. When faced with a mountain that feels like it won’t move, you start moving a little quicker, take fewer chances, etc. etc. I really aspire to keep a constant pace regardless of my workload, but it’s hard not to adjust how many partials you’re requesting based on how much work awaits.”
“Just don’t do it. Avoid the weeks around major holidays. It’s better to be part of a trickle than a flood. “
I think these are sound words of advice, especially since he wrote this when he was still an agent.
So, are you querying now? Are you planning on querying next week? Please, by all means do! (She grins and giggles with her evil witch laugh)
I will be more than happy to tip-toe over you lightly in a few months if you are sitting in the slush pile.
Please check out Nathan Bransford’s site, and his first novel, Jacob Wonderbar.
Nathan Brandsford: Is there a best time to Query?
- Query, query. (leighevans.wordpress.com)