Since starting my Agent Quest at the beginning of September, I’ve sent out 11 queries and received 5 rejections and 1 No response (although the website said if I don’t hear from them in 3 weeks, it was considered a pass). I’ve only had one agent request a partial, all others have been rejected simply on Query or the first few pages. I currently have 5 queries out there and am prepping another letter to send off, as I like to have 6 queries out at once, since this is a time-consuming process.
I admit I wish I was getting more feedback, like “we aren’t searching for a Steampunk Romance”, or “No one is looking for this,” or “You’re writing needs work specifically in these areas.” Unfortunately most have simply been, “we are going to pass on this project.”
“Why? Why are you passing?” I wonder.
Last week, I talked about my looking for Beta Readers and this is why. So I can find out if its something in my writing that isn’t working. My concern is that the writing is fine, and I’ve missed the market on Steampunk. If that’s the case, even if I decide to go direct to the publishers, I may have a difficult time finding a home for this manuscript. It makes me question if I should write something saleable for NaNoWriMo or work on the next book in this Steampunk series.
I have been researching Indie publishing for the very concerns I listed above regarding the market for Steampunk. I personally love the genre mixed with romance and feel there aren’t enough books, but maybe I’m in the minority on this one. Although by all accounts, this seems to be a loyal fan base if you get “it” right, and there is a significant amount of self-published (indie) books in the genre. I feel if I did go the self-published (Indie) route that I’d at least have a chance to succeed (or fail) based on readers.
But I digress as this post was about Options. Even though this process has been long and tiresome, I do still have a good portion of my agent list to work through and then after that my editor list. I’ve decided to give my agent search until January and then I’ll be querying publishers directly. That list is pretty long too.
To give myself options when I go to find either an agent or publisher I make an excel spreadsheet of what they are looking for and what is important to me, so I can expedite the list, so really when I can the rejection I’m not so dejected.
I admit my experience with publishers (especially digital presses) is that they know exactly what they want and the turn around on query, and usually the manuscript is much faster. Many publishers now take the full manuscript so there is very little waiting.
Well I should write that next query letter, so I can hurry up and wait. 🙂