I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Submission protocol, query etiquette, and strategies that work
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I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by writeaskew » June 12th, 2010, 11:52 am

Hi all.

So I keep a really detailed list of agents I want to query, how they accept queries, what they wasnt, etc.

I had an agent that I had written down to paper queries, not email. I sent it off and it's been three weeks. I went to check her turnaround time today and noticed her website said email queries. I don't know how I missed it, I prowled her website for days. Here's my question:

Should I assume she tossed the paper copy in the trash and email her a copy since I never got my SASE back or should I assume she read it, doesn't want me and thinks i'm a totally unprofessional jerk?

I'm having a total headdesk moment. I feel really, really stupid.


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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by izanobu » June 12th, 2010, 12:01 pm

I'd give it another month or so, then send the email query if you haven't heard anything. Seriously, agents and editors get so many submissions that they won't remember the wrong ones unless you do something truly stupid like call them a jerk or threaten them or something like that.

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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by polymath » June 12th, 2010, 12:38 pm

The paper or digital submission duel is leaning toward digital. Last year, many of the top of the market digests didn't accept digital submissions, same with agents and publishers. More and more are favoring digital. Technology is catching up with the demand curve. Web submission software and hardware applications now manage submissions more efficiently than any other method. Even university literary journals are adopting digital submissions. Boston Review was one of the early adapters of the current state of the art technology. There's been a submission sea change this year, perhaps the biggest since typewriters were introduced, favoring digital submissions. I've noticed agent, publisher, and digest Web sites have been changing their submission and query guidelines to favoring digital over paper. But we're in a transition phase I believe is mostly forgiving and accommodating so far. Writers will soon have to be more vigilant in our due dilligence. If not annually, at least quarterly, if not daily, checking the state of the marketplace, because the changes are coming fast now.
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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by Mira » June 12th, 2010, 1:55 pm

I know how you feel, I'd probably feel the same. But looking from the outside, I think I might not worry so much. I think I'd e-mail it to her, with a quick explanation that you orginally sent it by mail by mistake.

If she likes your work, I doubt this will matter that much. And if it does - that's an important point, too. Something to think about....

Good luck! :)

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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by Wheelsgr » June 14th, 2010, 2:15 am

I agree with Mira, I wouldn't stress it so much, it was a mistake, you know that. Give it about a month I say then email in your query.

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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by HillaryJ » June 14th, 2010, 7:05 pm

Does the agent specify that she does not take paper queries? If so, that query isn't making it to her desk: fire off the e-version. If she is intrigued by the project, and by some stroke of magic both versions find their way to her, she likely isn't going to ignore you for sending a query the "wrong" way.
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Re: I Did Something Stupid- need advice

Post by deepsesh » June 19th, 2010, 4:15 am

You should just email your query to her... you could just explain the mistake you made. Personally i don't think you even need to wait before doing that.

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