Nathan Bransford, Author


Monday, April 13, 2009

Be An Agent for a Day: Query #23

This query is part of the Be an Agent for a Day contest. Rules and Regulations here

Please post your rejection or manuscript request in the comment section!



Dear Agent for a Day:

My young adult novel, "Quartz Sky," has a word count of approximately 41,587.

I am a new author seeking representation, though I have been agented before. My relationship with my first agent has ended amicably: he is Gerald Abel, formerly a director of the trade division of Disney/Hyperion Books before he opened his own agency, and he has also been a consultant for Alloy Productions. He helped me greatly in developing "Quartz Sky," but was not able to go forward with plans to submit the manuscript to several imprints, including Feiwel & Friends, this past spring, due to the increased demands of his consulting work. He felt that he would not be able to give "Quartz Sky" the attention it deserves and has released me from our representation agreement with his best wishes.

"Quartz Sky" has an interesting backstory: I originally set out to write and illustrate a picture book about a young boy who makes friends with a baby dinosaur. (My four-year-old son adores dinosaurs.) Once I began the writing portion of the project, though, it took on a life of its own—it turned into a novel about a teenaged boy who develops a unique time-traveling ability. No matter where his time-jumping adventures take him, he must deal with the problems of kids his age: insecurity, love, bullying, and finding the courage to defend the family and friends he loves. He learns very quickly that his abilities come with a price, and a sense of responsibility, too. The baby dinosaur is still part of the story, in addition to a fiesty, strong, female love interest.

The novel would particularly appeal to middle-age readers and young adults, but I believe adults may find interest in it, too.

May I send you a partial manuscript and synopsis of "Quartz Sky?" I look forward to your response.

Sincerely,
Author

STATS: 1% request rate






327 comments:

«Oldest   ‹Older   1 – 200 of 327   Newer›   Newest»
Agent X said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for taking the time to query. I'm afraid this isn't the right piece for me. I wish you the best of luck.

Sincerely,

Agent X

Thomas said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your submission, but as I do not represent young adult fiction, your book is not appropriate for my current needs. I suggest you query widely and I wish you luck in your future endeavors.

Sincerely,
Tally

Derek said...

Dear Author,

I'm sorry, but I've already used up 4 out of my allotted 5 manuscript request rights, so I'm having to be more selective. I'll pass on this one.

Agent For A Day.

Cat Hellisen said...

Dear Author

Thank you for your query.  Your proposal is interesting, but I don't feel that the project is quite right for me. I wish you the best of luck in finding representation elsewhere.

Best,
Cat.

Colorado Writer said...

Sorry, not for me.
Best,
Agent Name

quixotic said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, however, I do not feel excited enough about, QUARTZ SKY to request anything further.

Good luck in your search for an agent.

Quixotic

jimnduncan said...

Thank you for querying me, but I'm afraid I must pass on your story. Best of luck in your continued writing endeavors.

(reason: you lost me before you reached the rather vague description of the story. I think you could dump most of that previous history info in the query)

Anonymous said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for considering me, but I'm afraid it just isn't a good fit for me.

Agent99

Comments: Not sure I would start with the other agent story; also, I'd need more specifics about the MC and storyline.

PurpleClover said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for thinking of me. Good luck on your endeavors but at this time I can not offer representation.

Regards,
PC

JSB said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query letter, but it does not contain enough specific information about the book itself and it not currently appropriate for my needs.

Best of luck,

JSB

(I'm glad they were forth coming about the previous agent information, but it took the place of having enough information about the book to be interesting. I wouldn't want to represent someone based only on the fact they'd had a good agent before.)

Christine Rose said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, but this isn't right for me at this time.

Best of luck,
Agent for a Day

terri said...

Thank you for your query. This type of work isn't a fit for my interests and editorial contacts.

Sincerely: Agent

[Total aside: I had a problem with the long intro about the other agent. I felt like I was being sent his leftovers. If it was that good, why couldn't he fit it into his schedule. Just an IMHO aside, but I'd put that to the bottom and underplay it.]

[Totally Aside: Nathan if I ever see you at a conference, I owe you a drink]

suki said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. I'm afraid this project isn't right for me. I wish you luck in your search for representation.

Regards,
Suki


Reasoning: Not enough story. Too much telling about the author. And honestly, the whole backstory on the book and the prior agent raises warning flags for me.

Anonymous said...

This query could really benefit from editing. There's too much personal info. The deluge of info is actually obscuring the story itself. The story should be brought to the fore, moved way up in the query letter. Details about agents and what not should be moved below the story itself, all references to offspring should be removed.

That said, the story itself sounds adorable and if I were the type of Pretend-Agent who specialises in middlegrade fiction I'd actually want to represent it. But am focusing on fantasy. So:


Dear author,
Your manuscript is just not right for me. Thanks for querying.

sincerely,
moniza

Anonymous said...

Dear Author,

I'm afraid at this time I must pass, however I wish you the best on seeking representation.

Agent XXX

**Okay, this is where I'd probably never finish getting through queries, because my urge to ask the writers to re-submit with an edited query letter is just too great.

Ethan Rose said...

Dear Author,
I am afraid I lost interest in your letter before I got to the story. I would try leading with that next time and leave the agent story on the cutting-room floor.
Sincerely,

TheDivaAgent said...

Dear Author,

We at The Divalicious Agency understand and appreciate the hard work required to craft a novel. Unfortunately, we are not accepting submissions at this time.

We wish you the best in finding representation for your novel.

Yours,

The Diva Agent

Onovello said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I am not the right agent for this material.

I do hope you'll find success in placing it elsewhere.

Best,
Onovello

Lisa R said...

Dear Quartz Sky:

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately your project is not right for me. Another agent may feel differently. Best of luck.

Lisa R

Matilda McCloud said...

Thanks for your query. I'm afraid I'll have to pass on this one.

Keep writing!

With my very best regards,

Matilda McCloud

lilianamama said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your interest in the "Be An Agent For a Day" contest. While I find your idea intriguing, your query's language does not demonstrate awareness of marketability for your work. I suggest you choose an age range and stick with it. If it will appeal to all age ranges, great, but let the readers (including the agent/editor) decide that.

I wish you all the best.

Keri Ford said...

Thank you for submitting, but unfortunately I didn’t connect with this story idea.

Good Luck,
Keri


<><><><><><>
You spent a lot of time explaining your old agent and then about writing the story, but you didn't tell very much about the story itself. And what bit you did say about the story, was buried at the bottom.

Chanelley said...

Thank you for submitting your query. Unfortunately, it is not what I’m looking for at this time. However, do continue to query widely. After all, it does only take one agent to say yes!
All the best,
Agent for the day

romoak said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission, but this is not right for me.

-- There was too much backstory about the author, and not nearly enough info about the story. Also, this screams Jumpr (the movie) to me.

Kitti said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. I regret to inform you that I am going to have to pass on Quartz Sky, as I don't believe I can adequately represent it. Please keep me in mind for your future projects.

Best of luck,
Kitti

brian_ohio said...

Thank you for your query. I'm afraid this isn't right for me.

Best,

Brian

scj said...

Sorry, but this isn't right for me. Your query did not give me a good sense of the book's plot, instead focusing on how you came to write the book. Best of luck.

KC in SF said...

thank you for your query. At this point, I don't feel like I know enough about your novel to offer representation. I also think your novel would be better served by an agent who represents a lot of YA (I do not).

best wishes,

KC in SF

Anonymous said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, your project is not right for me.

Best of luck,
Agent for a Day

[Querier should drop the backstory about what s/he learned during the writing, cut the other-agent story to a single sentence and move it to the end, and focus the beginning of the query on the story at hand.]

Laurie said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. While your premise sounds intriguing, I'm going to have to pass at this time.

All the best,
Laurie

P.S. I agree with the others that too much of your query is about the other agent and not enough about your book.

ccallicotte4 said...

Thank you for sending me your query. I appreciate you considering me.

I reviewed your proposal and unfortunately am going to pass on representing it as I do not feel that I would be the best advocate for your work. Please keep in mind that this is a subjective business, and another agent may feel differently. I encourage you to query widely.

Best of luck to you.

David said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your submission, but your project doesn't sound right for me. Good luck in your future writing endeavors.

Sincerely,
David

Laura said...

Dear Author,

I would like to request a partial of your manuscript. Please send the first 5 chapters in the form of .doc to this email address.

Thank you,

Agent Laura

Bija Andrew Wright said...

This is an interesting one. I can't exactly say that I'm hooked, but I'm intrigued. What the hell. Send me the manuscript as an email attachment.

Speaking out of pretend-agent mode, I did want to see a little more about the actual book and less about the around-the-book. Make that more concise, if you're actually agent-shopping. Also, this may be a personal peeve, but I've known a few mothers who want to write children's books who oversell that as a credential--"My kids tell me I tell the best stories!"--and while you don't actually do that, your mention of it might not sit well with prospective agents.

reader said...

I'm afraid I'll have to pass.

Best of luck.

Jane Doherty said...

Form reject.

(Unless the previous agent's name has been changed; he's hiding from Google. Searched his name and in conjunction with Hyperion - nada except for a mention of this blog.)

Lucy A muse ision said...

Dear Author,
I really think you've got something with this project.
Unfortunately,
I'm not taking on new authors at this point.

Thanks. Sorry.

Lucy A Muse ision
Fictitious Agent

Nixy Valentine said...

Dear Author:

I'm sorry, but I don't feel I'm the right agent for your project.

Notes: If you must put in the bit about the previous agent (I don't know if it's necessary, unless that agent already shopped the novel around), put it at the end, not the beginning.

Also, resist the temptation to tell the story of why you decided to tell the story and how you wrote it. Just tell what the story is about. I got a bit lost in your explanation, and it wasn't necessary, plus it confused me if this was a picture book or YA novel or something in between.

I suspect the book itself may be very well written because you can obviously write well, but your query doesn't reflect it with the meandering "hook" section.

ai-hua said...

Sorry, I'm not interested in children's books. If I knew of an agent who was, though, I would pass it to him/her. Form rejection.

Megan said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, your book isn't right for me. Agenting is subjective, though, and I wish you the best of luck!

Sincerely,
Megan

Anonymous said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. I’ll pass on this one. Good luck in your endeavors.

Regards,

Lindsey S.

bridge said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query. Sorry but I'm going to pass.
Best,
Bridge
On a personal note. This sounds good. I am wondering if you lowered the age to appeal to readers of magic tree house if that would be even better. The back story and agent story are unnecessary you can share them with an agent at a later time. Cut out the baby dinosaur it doesn't need to be in the query. Tell us about the boy. Why do we like him? How does he travel? What is his main problem? Don't tell us what we are going to learn or give a laundry list. Focus on one. This is good I really like it. Hope to read it someday.
Hope this helps,
Bridge

PPP said...

Dear Author,

Seriously, I love both time travel and baby dinosaurs. So I would almost say yes to this.

But I have no idea what the story is, and baby dinosaurs can make for either fantastic stuff or total drivel. So can you re-query with a synopsis?

Signed,
PPP

AgentMan said...

Sorry, we don't handle YA fiction.

AgentMan

Caroline said...

Dear Author:

I regret to inform you that I cannot represent this work. You haven't told me enough of the premise of the novel.

Best of luck,

Agent Caroline

Craven said...

Thank you for considering me, but this isn't a fit at this time. Best of luck,

Craven

kdrausin said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for requesting my representation. I applaud your determination and effort in completing your novel. Your story is not right for me at this time; however I encourage you to keep writing and pursuing your goal of publication.

I wish you the best of luck on your journey.

Sincerely,
KDrausin

Rick Daley said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your interest in The Authors Write Literary Agency. I have reviewed your query for Quartz Sky, and I’m sorry to say that I do not feel that I am the best agent to represent your work at this time.

Please keep in mind that there are many talented agents out there, and opinions are subjective based on individual preferences, workload, and market climate.

Don’t be afraid to research other agents and query those that you feel are best suited to represent your work. Best of luck!

Regards,

Daley Agent for a Day

Sophie W. said...

Dear Author of Quartz Sky,

Although your work shows merit, I cannot request further materials at this time. Keep in mind that this business is terribly subjective, and you'll probably get the chance to thumb your nose at me in the future.

Love,

Sophie

beth said...

Dear Author,

Although I appreciate your submission, I'm sorry but it just isn't for me. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors.

Sincerely,
beth

(Reasoning: There's too much about the background of the book, not enough about the book itself.)

jjdebenedictis said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your recent query; discovering new talent is one of the joys of being a literary agent, and I am always honoured to have the opportunity to read a writer's best work.

Please accept my regrets, however, as I won't be offering to represent this novel. I apologize for informing you of this using a form letter, but the volume of mail I receive makes it impractical for me to give personalized rejections.

I wish you the very best luck in finding a literary agent whose enthusiasm will bring your book the success it deserves!

Sincerely,
J. J. DeGoblin

~~~~~~~
For your reference, here are the most common reasons why I decline certain queries. Please note that if your submission was very good, my reasons for rejecting it were probably much subtler than the items on this list and cannot be put quickly into words. Again, I apologize for this form letter, but I cannot invest the time to critique those submissions I have chosen to not represent. Thank you for your understanding.


Most common reasons why I decline manuscripts:

[ ]--The manuscript is in a genre which I don't represent

[ ]--The query appears to be a non-personalized mass mailing

[ X ]--The query/manuscript's presentation was worryingly unpolished
(E.g. Many spelling, grammar, punctuation or homophone errors; a non-standard format)

[ ]--The writing doesn't seem polished enough
(This improves with practice; your next novel may be excellent)

[ ]--The plot doesn't sound compelling enough
(Again, this improves with practice and self-education)

[ ]--The plot sounds too similar to something book-buyers have already seen


Comments, if any:
You have a non-standard format for your query. This might be a great book, but the query focuses on the wrong things for me to be able to judge that. For now, just tell us about the story! :-) The book's history is not of interest, and you should wait until after an agent has offered representation before you tell them you were previously represented.

David de Beer said...

Dear Author,

thanks for your interest but I am going to pass this time as I don't believe I'll be the right agent for this project.

Best of luck,
David de Beer

sirayn said...

Dear X,

Thank you for your query. I’m afraid I have to pass, but I wish you luck in finding an agent who’s passionate about your work.

Today’s Agent

(Reasoning: need less about your four-year-old son helping inspire the previous version of the book, and more about the actual product you're trying to persuade me to sell. Premise [time-travelling teenager] could be interesting, but I'm not sure what the plot is. All I know is that love and insecurity etc etc are involved in some way. Need specifics.)

K. Andrew Smith said...

Dear author,

Thank you for your submission, Quartz Sky. Unfortunately, it's not quite right for me. I wish you good fortune in your quest for an agent.

Sincerely,

K. Andrew Smith

Moth said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for submitting your query to Moth's Literary Agency. While your story sounds interesting, I'm afraid it's just not right for us. Best of luck in your writing career.

Sincerely,
Moth

Ulysses said...

Thanks for submitting your query. Unfortunately, I don't feel I am the agent to represent this work.

Megan said...

Dear Author,

I was interested by your query, but couldn't get a good sense of your story. While I must decline at this time, I would invite you to requery.

Thanks,

Meg Spencer

Dara said...

Dear Quartz,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately I do not think I am the right person for this book. I wish you success in your search for representation.

Best,

Dara

Specifics: Too much personal information in the query and not enough about the actual project.

:)Ash said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your interest in my agency. Unfortunately, I do not feel I am the right agent for you at this time. Best wishes as you continue your search.

Sincerely yours,

:)Ash

Note: Author, I think it would be best to tell us more about the actual book, and not so much about your previous agent history or the backstory information.

sraasch said...

Dear Author,

It was difficult to decipher what your novel was about from your query, but I'm afraid the type of novel you described (which sounded like boys MG/YA) isn't something I'm interested in. Sorry!

Thanks!
Sara

John said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for giving me the chance to consider your work. Unfortunately, it's not something I think I can sell at present. I wish you the best of luck in your writing career.

Melissa said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for sending me your query. Your project sounds promising, but I don't think I'm the right agent for the book. Best of luck.

Melissa


Thoughts: This query is well-written, and it maintains a high level of professionalism. However, the synopsis didn't tell me as much about the book as I would have liked. I may be making a mistake by passing, but I am passing.

Jenn Johansson said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I'm afraid this isn't right for me. I would recommend adding more voice to your query and focusing a little more on your ms.

Best of luck!
JR

Cindy said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, however this project is not right for me.

All the best,
Cindy

DeadlyAccurate said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your query and I apologize for this form reply.

I regret I have to pass on many interesting projects due to time constraints. I wish you the best of luck in securing representation elsewhere.


Sincerely,

DeadlyAccurate

(I don't know for sure, but it seems better to leave off the previous representation stuff until you're further along).

Scott said...

Dear Author,

Your idea sounds marketable, but I do not represent YA fiction. I'm sure you'll find someone who will be interested, however.

Good luck,

Scott

Casey said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for your time and consideration. Unfortunately, I’m afraid I’m not the right agent to represent QUARTZ SKY and your career as a writer.

I'd suggest shortening your introduction in regards to your previous agent and investing more in your pitch, which is what I'm really interested in.

Best wishes,

Casey

EJ Lange said...

Author,

Thank you for submitting your query. Unfortunately, it is not right for me at this time. Good luck in your search for representation.

Agent Erin

Karen said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I do not believe this is a project I will be able to take on at this time.

Best of luck in your search.
Karen

hannah said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for the opportunity to consider your work, but it's not right for me at this time.

Best,
hannah

Monika said...

Thank you for your submission, but I do not think this project is right us. This is a subjective business and other agencies will feel differently. We wish you every success with your project.

[I love the title and the concept, but I think it's a mistake to start a query with a story about how it was passed over by another agent. I can understand the desire to namedrop, but if the agent felt passionate he would have recommended this to another agent.

Let the story and the writing speak for itself, and simply listed the sales in the bio-section.]

Rick said...

Author-

Sorry, but I don't represent YA fiction.

If you have not already, you may want to check out AgentQuery. It can help you find an Agent who best suits your needs.

http://www.agentquery.com/

Sincerely,
Rick O

Josephine Damian said...

Thought the writer would have much better served leaving the history with the ex-agent out of it, and just done a straight query.

form rejection

Cat said...

Dear Author,

thank you for submitting but it's not right for me.

Sincerely,
Cat

form rejection because this author talks more about himself than about the book. It might be a great book (it surely is an interesting idea) but the presentation is not making me want to read.

Bane of Anubis said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for your submission, but it isn't right for me. Best of luck,

Bane

(reasoning: this query is too much about the history of the efforts to get published - some of this is important to include - and not enough about the story... need more info)

Libby Martin said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for taking the time to query QUARTZ SKY. I'm afraid this isn't the right piece for me. I wish you the best of luck.

Sincerely,
Libby

gapyeargirl123 said...

Dear Author,

While the story sounds interesting, I don't feel you told me enough about the plot in your query.

~Agent A

Anonymous said...

Some advice:

"Quartz Sky" has an interesting backstory: I originally set out to write and illustrate a picture book about a young boy who makes friends with a baby dinosaur. (My four-year-old son adores dinosaurs.)[sorry, but no on cares, and this makes it sound unprofessional] Once I began the writing portion of the project, though, it took on a life of its own[cliche]—it turned into a novel about a teenaged boy who develops a unique time-traveling ability. No matter where his time-jumping adventures take him, he must deal with the problems of kids his age: insecurity, love, bullying, and finding the courage to defend the family and friends he loves.[too generic] He learns very quickly that his abilities come with a price, and a sense of responsibility, too. The baby dinosaur is still part of the story, in addition to a fiesty, strong, female love interest.

The novel would particularly appeal to middle-age readers and young adults, but I believe adults may find interest in it, too [so it appeals to everyone???? I'm sure that's what all authors love to think, but find one target audience and stick to it].

Amy said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission. I'm afraid this project isn't right for me.

Sincerely,
Amy

DCS said...

Thanks for the submission. I am not interested in YA novels at this time.

Lois Lavrisa said...

Dear Author,

While I appreciate your consideration of our agency, I will have to pass on your project.
I am sorry to say I did not have the passionate response to it that I would need to request more or offer you representation. Obviously you want an agent who will stand enthusiastically behind your work.

Additionally, given today’s publishing climate I do not believe I would be able to get you the attention from a publisher that your book deserves.

Publishing is very subjective, though, and another agent may well feel differently.

I do wish you success in finding representation and, once again, thank you for the opportunity to consider your work.

Sincerely,

Lois Lavrisa
Agent for a day

Madison said...

Dear Author,

Thank you so much for submitting your work and considering me to represent it. While the story sounds quite interesting, I am afraid it does not fit my list at this point in time and I must regretfully pass. I know rejections can be hard to take, but please keep submitting and following your dream.

Best of luck in your agent hunt!

Sincerely,

Madison

Reason for rejection: I don't need you to tell me about what happened with the other agent. You simply need to mention that you have been repped before. I don't think I need to know with who. Also I do not need background on the story. I need what it is about.

Anonymous said...

Dear Author

Thank you for your recent letter concerning your work. I am afraid that we are not enthusiastic enough about your work to pursue it further.

We wish you the best of luck in finding suitable representation.

Sincerely
The Fake Agency

Superfast said...

Thank you so much for your submission. Unfortunately, I don't feel I'm the right agent to represent your work.

Good luck and keep writing!

The Writers Canvas said...

Thanks for your query, but it's not right for me at this time. Best of luck to you in your writing endeavors!

Elaine

Ramen with cheese said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for allowing RJM Agency to consider your work, but I’m afraid it’s not a good fit for our list. We wish you every bit of luck in your search for representation.

RJM

Steve Axelrod said...

I'm passing because I'm confused. Is this book about a kid and his dinosaur friend, or about time travel generally, or both? If it's a combination, how does that work? You have a potentially interesting idea here, but your description is hard to follow.

lesleylsmith said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query letter.
Unfortunately, your novel is not a good fit for me.
Good luck!
-Lesley
p.s. This premise is promising but the previous representation section is raising a red-flag, as is the story that essentially got away from the author. This letter might be better if it was shorter.

Eva Ulian said...

Thank you for your query but as the agency does not deal in YA I suggest you submit your work to a more suitable agent. However before doing so, consider revising your query and substitute descriptive parts with active ones; e.g. what kind of insecurity, love, bullying does he encounter?

kaseee said...

Dear Author,

Your project is not without merit, but it isn't right for us at this time. Keep in mind this is a subjective business and another agent may feel differently.

Best of luck,

Agent

Jeni said...

Dear Quartz,
Thank you for your query. I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to review your proposal, and found the premise for your manuscript intriguing. However, I’m afraid that the manuscript does not meet my needs at this time. Please do continue to send your work to other agents, as someone else may feel differently.
Best of luck in your publishing endeavors,
Jeni

Jeni said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query. I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to review your proposal, and found the premise for your manuscript intriguing. However, I’m afraid that the manuscript does not meet my needs at this time. Please do continue to send your work to other agents, as someone else may feel differently.
Best of luck in your publishing endeavors,
Jeni

Other Lisa said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission. Unfortunately it's not what I'm looking for at this time. Best of luck in your search for representation,

Sincerely

Agent X

dhole said...

Dear Author, thanks for your query. Unfortunately, it's not right for my list, best of luck, etc.

Kristi said...

Thank you for your query. I feel this isn't quite right for me but I wish you the best of luck.

Sincerely,
Kristi

Anonymous said...

Dear Author,
I received and read your query.
I'm going to pass.

I'd suggest working on your hook and query. Get to the boy with the time-traveling ability much quicker, hook that potential agent or reader.

Best to you,
Agent SCL

Hilabeans said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to consider your work. I regret to say that I don’t feel that I’m the most appropriate agent for this project.

Best wishes,

HHS

Barb said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission, but this is not for me. I wish you luck in finding a home for your manuscript.

All the best,
Barb

Barbara Webb said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for sharing QUARTZ SKY, but I'm going to have to pass on this.

Best of luck!

Barbara

Harsh Critic said...

I wish your query letter had focused more on what the manuscript was about.

Sorry, not for me.

Vicky said...

Thank you for querying our agency. Unfortunately, this project is not right for us. Best of luck finding representation for your work.

All best.

(To author: Suggest you omit info about previous agent and what led you to write the book. Focus on the story.)

Tryst888 said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for submitting your query but I'm afraid I will have to pass on this one. Best of luck to you in your future endeavors.

Cassandra said...

Dear Author,

I'm afraid that at this time I am unable to offer representation for your novel. This is purely a business decision, and unfortunately means that I must turn away many talented individuals. I encourage you to continue querying agents you think might be interested.

I appreciate your interest in Agent for A Day, and wish you every success in your writing career.



Regards,
Cassandra

Dawn G. said...

Dear Author,

Unfortunately, I am unable to offer you representation at this time. Thank you for submitting your work for consideration. Please keep me in mind for future projects.

Kindest Regards,

D. Agent

Endless Secrets said...

Dear Author,

I regret to inform you that this is not the right novel for me as I specialize mainly in YA fiction with fantasy element and some romance and although your work seems to cover these ares, I fear that at less than 50000 words the story must be too juvenile.

Best of luck.

-Lea

Dorine White said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query. I feel your manuscript is interesting, but that I am not the best agent to represent it.

Best Regards,
Agent for a day

super agent nicole said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for taking the time to submit your query to me. Unfortunately, I am unable to offer you representation at this time.

Thank you,
Nicole

Note: I would recommend starting off with the blurb. Also, you don't really need to talk about your previous agent in the query; if the manuscript is requested, that might be a better time to mention it. if you do mention it, it doesn't need a whole paragraph, and it definitely doesn't need to be at the beginning.

Heather said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, but it's not for me.

Good luck!
Heather

Cary Louisa said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission, but I feel this is not the right project for me.

Thanks,
Cary

KathyF said...

Dear Author of Query #23,

Thank you for your query, but QUARTZ SKY isn't right for me.

KathyF

Nik said...

Thank you for your query, but I'm afraid I'm going to pass at this time.

Reasoning: Following the relationship with the former agent took me away from the story. I would suggest putting that paragraph at the end, and tightening the paragraph about the story. It's a little vague and I'm missing any sense of urgency for this boy and the lessons he must learn.

bookshop said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your recent submission. I regret that I am unable to offer you representation at this time. I wish you luck in your search for representation.

Regards,

Bookshop

________

(Hi! So, at the risk of being blunt, if you'll permit me to tell you, along with a lot of the other agents, I found this query confusing!

here was the only relevant part of your query - everything else=window-dressing:

a teenage boy time-travels; he deals with insecurity, love, bullying, and finding the courage to defend the family and friends he loves. He learns very quickly that his abilities come with a price.

this doesn't answer any of the Ws+How.

Who is this guy? does he have a name?
How does he get to time-travel?
How is he forced to deal with all those pesky adolescent issues? especially if he can just time-jump away to wherever?
What's at stake?
Why should we care?

All of those questions are vital to making me care about the story - not your previous agent connections or your son's prescience or the cute dinosaur. Not that those last things wouldn't be great on an author blurb, but first just focus on making the reader want to read a story with plot.

So, you gotta start out by telling us what the plot is!

Good luck! Sounds like you can generate a lot of interest with this one if you tighten it up, strip it down, and just give us the good stuff. :D)

SammyStewart said...

Form Rejection

Gwen said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your interest. Unfortunately, this project is not a good fit for me at the present time.

Regards,

Gwen

***

(Side note: I feel uncomfortable with the percentage of the query that was dedicated to detailing the author's relationship with her previous agent. I also feel that the description of the novel itself is a bit too vague, and so I must pass.)

Agent KES said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for submitting your query. Unfortunately, I am not able to offer you representation at this time. Best of luck,

Agent KES

Don said...

[form rejection]

Annalee said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for the opportunity to consider your manuscript. I'm afraid it isn't right for me.

Regards,
-Annalee

-----------
Reason: Author gets more than halfway through the query before they even talk about what the story is about--and even then, there's a premise but no plot. Mentioning previous representation needs to be handled more carefully--and more briefly--than this. A few words at the end (I'm thankful to Agent XXX for representing and assisting with this manuscript. We parted ways amicably before it was submitted) would be better. If it were me, I wouldn't mention it at the query stage at all, since it wasn't submitted anywhere. If it seemed appropriate, I might ask the former agent for a referral instead.

The Classic Carol said...

Dear Author of QUARTZ SKY:
Thanks for your query and for noting prior agent experience. It is our top priority to select what best matches our agency. Your query could be tightened up by limiting the explanation on book origins and increasing focus on story, also common practice would be to write your title in all caps (just small suggestions). We wish you success as you pursue an agent better suited to your work.

Megan said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for taking the time to submit.

I regret to inform you that at this time I would like to pass on your book.

Best of luck in the future,

Regards,
Agent for a Day, Bookworm Megs

Jen C said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for submitting your query to the Most Awesome Literary Agency Ever. I regret that, at this time, your project is not quite what I’m looking for. I wish you the best of luck in your continuing search for representation.
Sincerely,
Jen C.

Sasha said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I don't think I'm the right agent to represent your work.

Good luck and yours truly,
AftD

Comments: This is only a personal opinion, but I think the way your have structured your query does a disservice to your story. I would start with your *story's* hook, and segue to more detailed description of the MC/plot. I would include a shorter version of the agent info in the subsequent "bio" paragraph, and leave out the paragraph giving your inspiration, and manuscript's "backstory." Again, this is just my personal opinion, and I give it in the friendliest possible way. As is, I don't get a sense of the story or MC, and so have no reason to request more.

Kelly Guentner said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for the query. I regret to inform you that this is not the right work for me to represent at this time.

I wish you luck in your future writing career.

Sincerely,
Kelly Guentner

Kavanaugh and Byrne's LA said...

Dear Author

Thank you opportunity to consider your work at Kavanaugh and Byrne’s Literary Agency.

We do not feel that are the best match with this project.
We wish you every success with this and other ventures

Flower Kavanaugh

(Less is more sometimes)

Tara Ryan said...

Dear Author,
Thank you so much for submitting your work to me. Unfortunately, Quartz Sky is not a good fit for me at this time. I wish you much luck in your writing endeavors.
Agent-for-a-day

StrugglingToMakeIt said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for querying me. Unfortunately, I don't think I'm the right agent to represent your work.

Best,

Agent

(There's very little about the story itself here)

ikmar said...

Dear Author

Thank you for your query. Sorry, but it is not for me.

Sincerely,
Agent for the Day

Anonymous said...

Dear Author,

While this project shows merit, I'm afraid it didn't fully resonate with me. I feel sure that another agent will feel differently, and wish you the best of luck.

-Agent Pro Tempore

Disgruntled Bear said...

Thank you for querying me. Unfortunately I am going to have to pass at this time.
I wish you the best of luck with another agent.

Sincerely,
Agent

Pinkie said...

Dear Author,

While the story line that seems to be in your query caught some of my attention,I suspect that the writing isn't as sharp as it should be to become a sellable product. If it ever does improve, you might have a winner.

Thanks.
CPK

Jeanne Tomlin said...

Form rejection

Adam Heine said...

Tell me about the story, not how you came to write it. There's more information about what your former agent is doing than what your current story is about.

I like the idea, but without a story I have to pass.

Gregory said...

Dear Author;

Form rejection.

Cordially,

Agent Gregory

[When I read the agent story, the message I get is: Author couldn't accept agent's judgment that this story doesn't make it. It just doesn't bode well. And as others have pointed out, I don't know what the story is really about. You haven't given me the specifics.]

Katy said...

Thank you for your submissions. I don't feel I am the right agent to represent your project. May I suggest your rework your query before sending it to any other agents? More about the story and less about your personal tale will most likely benefit you in your search for representation.
Best of luck,
Katy

Melinda said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, but unfortunately this project isn't right for me. Best of luck in your search for representation.

Sincerely,

Melinda

P.S. I like the title, but I don't have a clear sense of the plot or characters. I'd start with a hook/what the book is actually about, cut all of the "why you wrote this" backstory, and greatly reduce the paragraph about the previous representation to just a sentence or two.

Meg Trotter said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, however I must pass. This is not quite right for me. My advice would be to concentrate more on the story itself and less on the explanation of how you came to write the story.

Best of luck elsewhere,

Megan

CJK said...

Thank you for your query. I am not interested in further materials on this work. Good luck with your search for representation. CJK

Note: You may find it helpful to edit the query on the matters of your former agent and the backstory of the novel and add more about the actual book -- I found myself wishing for more information on the actual story.

Eden said...

Thanks for the opportunity but I'm afraid I'll have to pass on representing this piece.

Best of luck with your writing.

~Eden

Merry Monteleone said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your interest in The Only Literary Agency Insane Enough To Trust Me With Queries. Unfortunately, I'm going to have to pass.

Best of luck,

Merry

This would be a form rejection, but I'm going to tell you why - you used most of the space in this query talking about your previous agent. Concentrate on the book. Your previous agent is only important to new agents if they've submitted the book to editors already.

Renee Collins said...

Dear Quartz Sky,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, this story does not seem quite right for me.

Best of luck,

Renee

Pap said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your interest in my agency. However, I will not be requesting any further materials from you at this time. Please note that submissions are a very subjective business and my comments are not a critique on your writing ability. I strongly encourage you to continue your search for an agent and wish you all the best.

Your sincerely,

Make-believe Agency

Vic K said...

Thank you for submitting to my agency, however I am not able to offer representation at this time.

Regards,
Vic K.

Reason; I'm discovering I'm not attracted to queries where I feel I'm being told about the story instead of shown the story. This has that element for me.

MK said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for your submission. After careful consideration, I've decided this manuscript isn't for us at this time.

Good luck with your search.

Best,
Agent For a Day

Mystery Robin said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission, but I am not the right agent for this book. Best of luck!

Robin

Sage said...

Dear Q.S.,

I didn't get a good enough sense of the novel from your query, and I'm afraid I'm going to have to pass. Another agent may feel differently.

Thanks,
Sage

Selene said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for contacting Selene Literary. After careful consideration, we regret to inform you that this project is not right for us. We wish you the best of luck in finding an agent that is as enthusiastic about this book as it deserves.

Best regards,
Selene Da Agent
Selene Literary

Nay said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query.
I will have to pass on this project, but best of luck to you.

-Nay

theflightytemptress said...

Dear Quartz Sky,

Thank you for your submission, but unfortunately it’s not for me. Publishing is a very subjective business, though, and another agent may feel differently. Best of luck on your continued search.

It's not clear to me how these time-jumping adventures are connected--aside from the protagonist.

Yours,

Kat Brauer

Julie Weathers said...

Dear Author,

There were interesting points in your submission, but I’m afraid I can’t offer representation. This is a subjective business, and what appeals to one reader doesn’t always appeal to another. With my current workload, I have to be very discriminating and take on only projects I am passionate about.

I urge you to continue your quest to be published and wish you the best of luck.

Sincerely,

J.M. Agent

(Cut out all the part about the previous agent. Cut out how the book came about. Focus on the story and some specifics. Protag, protag's desires, antag, antag's desires, huge problem, huger problem, oh, no, they'll never get out of this.)

Sol said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query. Unfortunately I am unable to request a partial at this time.

Kind regards,

Sol Nima

side note: As an agent for a day I feel I know more about you and your process in writing and marketing this manuscript than the work itself. Please consider including more of the zeal of the book in future queries. If you were able to find one agent, chances are you'll find a second. Best, S.N.

austere said...

Dear Author

Regrets.

Good luck with your writing.

Regards,


ps- Don't tell me ALL about the previous agent.

Annie said...

I'd pass.

Reason: the query is all about you, and how the book was written, but none of the actual book shines through. Show us what the story is.

Jessumby said...

Dear Author

Thank you for sending me your query. I regret to inform you that it does not suit the needs of my list at this time.

Regards, Jessumby

thin said...

Dear Author,
While it seems like an interesting premise for a book, I'm sorry to say that I cannot take on the project. Thank you for considering me, and best of luck in the future.
Sincerely,
Thin

Polenth said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission. As your story didn't resonate with me, I'm going to have to pass.

--
Polenth

[[Too much personal history. Not enough about the story. Which is a pity, because I love dinosaurs.]]

RW said...

Dear Author:

Thank you very much for your query. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to consider your work for representation. As you know, it’s a competitive market these days, and I don’t believe I have the right relationships to sell this project successfully. I do wish you luck in finding an agent and thank you for considering me.

Yours truly,

RW

Brigita said...

Thank you for sending me your query. Unfortunately, this project is not right for me. I wish you the best of luck in securing representation elsewhere.

wickerman said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. I am passing on Quartz Sky at this time. I suggest you rework your query. Your book got far too little attention and your former agent far too much. I would suggest focusing on the former and querying again.

Best of Luck,

The Wickerman

Commander of the Bransford Lit Security Forces

Poppy said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission. I am afraid that your work is not right for me at this time, however I would urge you to continue to submit to other agents: this is a subjective business.

Agent

(PS: I'm not an expert, but I'd suggest more on what the book is actually about, and less on you and where the book's idea came from.)

Krista said...

Sorry, form rejection.

I need a little more.

Deniz Bevan said...

Thank you for your query, but I wouldn't be the right agent in this instance.
I wish you luck finding the right home for your work.
Sincerely,
Ms Agent Agency

Soratian said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for your query, but I'm afraid that I'll be passing on this one as it's not quite a match for me. I wish you the best of luck in your search for another agent.

Best regards,
Soratian

(Comments: I didn't put it in my reply but I didn't really feel enough of the story plot. While I think the agent part is useful, it should come at the end in a more succinct form. Story should come first!)

Patti K. said...

Thank you for your submission but it is not right for me at this time. I like the fact that you let me know about your previous agent but in the future you might want to either put that information at the end of your query and not go into as much detail. If an agent decides to work with you there will be plenty of time to go into details. Good luck on you quest for the perfect agent!

Patti K.

JuJu said...

Dear Author,

Though your project shows some promise and sounds interesting, unfortunately it is just not the right one for me. Please keep in mind that appeal as a novel is entirely subjective – so keep at it!

Sincerely,
JuJu

Jabez said...

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I do not believe I am the best agent to represent your manuscript. Best of luck in your quest for publication.

Dale - Las Vegas said...

Thank you for your submission but it doesn't seem right for me at this time.

Good luck in the future.

Sarah Laurenson said...

Form rejection.


A few interesting stand outs here - the exactish word count, the lengthy explanation of what went wrong with the first agent and the small number of words on the book itself.

Kats said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for your query, however I will have to pass on Quartz Sky as it's not the right fit for me.

Best,
Agent for a Day, Kats

Sherry Ficklin said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for thinking of me, but I'm going to have to pass. Best of luck finding another agent!

Sincerely, Agent Faux

lucy in the sky said...

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately I do not believe I am the best person to represent your work.

educlaytion said...

Thank you for your submission, but your book is not for me. Good luck in the future.

Belinda Frisch said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. However, I am not able to offer representation at this time.

Best Wishes,
Belinda

Tree said...

Dear Author:
I want to thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to consider your work. Unfortunately, I did not connect well enough with your project to pursue it further. As I'm sure you know, agenting is a very subjective business. Although your project didn't fit with my particular list, another agent may respond very differently.
Please accept my best wishes for success in your writing career and finding the perfect advocate for your work.
Sincerely,
Tree

Janeal C. Falor said...

Thank you for the opportunity to look at you work. Unfortunately, I don't feel this is the right project for me.

Heather Harper said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission. After careful consideration, I regret that I’m unable to request your manuscript at this time.

Best,
Agent for a day

Cat Moleski said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your submission, but I must pass on your project at this time.

Cat

Lipstick Lizzie said...

Dear Author,

Thanks for the chance to look at your work. Unfortunately, I don’t think I’m the right agent for this project.

Best of luck,
Lizzie

cwsherwoodedits said...

Thank you for your query. I'm going to have to pass.

Fairduncan said...

Dear Author

Thanks for querying us. I regret I have to pass on this one, but wish you every success in finding representation.

Cordially Yours,
Agent

JohnO said...

Dear Author,

While your qualifications are impressive, your query left me wanting more about the project itself: more about the boy, his problem, and his conflict.

I'll pass for now.

Best,
Agent

Joy said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submission and your interest in using me as an agent. After taking some time to consider your material, I have decided that this isn't right for me.

Best of luck in your writing endeavors,

Joy

Notes: I'd suggest starting with the third paragraph first. I'd also pick a definite audience and give the book some focus. Great start.

Amethyst Greye Alexander said...

Dear Author,

I've reviewed your query but am afraid your project isn't a good fit with the works I represent. I hope you won't let this discourage you, however, as every agent has different tastes and you're sure to find representation that will better suit your needs.

Thank you for considering me.
Amethyst Adams

Anonymous said...

Form Rejection.

Agent DC

Wandering Spirit said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for taking the time to submit your query. Unfortunately I am unable to offer you representation at this time. However, all writing is of value and I wish you the best in your endeavours.

Best wishes

Agent for a Day

Note: - I have no experience in this but if the previous agent is releasing the author yet supports this body of work surely he would have made an introduction to another appropriate agent?

Mira said...

Dear Author,

I'm very torn on this one. I think your story is very good, and very age-appropriate. I especially like the description of the "feisty, strong female love interest."

I also like your friendly, accessible tone of voice in your query. I get the impression you would be very easy and pleasant to work with.

I'm not going to request a partial, because I'm trying to win the contest, and I am guessing you're not yet published.

But if I were an agent in real life, I'd request a partial to look at your writing style. If your smooth, even, accessible tone transfers to your work, it could be very good.

I'm not sure how I feel about your mention of a previous agent. I like knowing that another agent took you on, but knowing that they also separated with you without finding a market for a book within a year could leave me with the wrong impression.

I think you are writing in a highly marketable and popular genre. If your writing style in the story holds up, I think your odds of being agented and published (if you are not already) are very high.

I wish you the very best!

Mira

Tamara said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. I wish you the best of luck finding a home for this project, but after consideration, I have to say it's not for me.

Agent for a Day
(Tamara)

Savannah Pens said...

Dear Author: Thank you for your query. However, this project is not right for my agency at this time. Best wishes. Savannah Pens Agent

Venus Vaughn said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query, your project doesn't meet my needs at this time.
Best of luck to you in your writing career.

~Venus Vaughn

Horserider said...

Dear Author:

Thank you for allowing us to consider your work. I’m sorry to say that this is not something we are interested in at this time. We receive hundreds of submissions every week and, unfortunately, cannot take them all on. This is a very subjective business and I wish you luck on your journey to publication.

Sincerely,

Horserider Literary Agency

Maryann Miller said...

So sorry, but this is not right for us. Good luck placing it elsewhere.

Jenn said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for submitting your query. Unfortunately, your book is not appropriate for my needs at this time.

Sincerely,
Fake Agent

---I would get to the story first before the info on your old agent. Not enough plot and character information here to make me want to read more.

KareFree Kennels said...

Quartz Sky


Sorry, not for me.

Best of luck,
Sheryl

Elizabeth said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your query. Unfortunately, I do not feel strongly enough about the work to request any further material.

Best regards,

Agent Elizabeth

Lupina said...

Thank you but it's not for me at this time. Perhaps a few more specifics as to story conflict would serve you better than agent history.

The Lupina Agency

Mercy Loomis said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for querying me on your book Quartz Sky. I regret that I am unable to represent you at this time.

Sincerely,
Mercy Loomis

Feedback:
You should start out with your book, not with your relationship with your previous agent. At most, mention that your previous agent referred you to me, if that is indeed the case.

The backstory on how you came to write Quartz Sky is also not relevant. The backstory will not sell your book. Your book will. Get to your book.

Also, a minor detail, you don't need to include the exact word count. Round to the nearest hundred.

Your story sounds kind of interesting. Make it the focus of your query letter and I think you have a good shot at catching someone's interest.

Lucy said...

Dear Author: Thank you for contacting us. Unfortunately, we do not feel that we are a suitable agency to represent your work. We wish you every success in your search for an agent. Sincerely, L. C.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your submission. Unfortunately, this project is not a good fit for me. I appreciate your time and consideration, and wish you luck in finding representation.
Best,

Agent M

Anonymous said...

Thanks for your query, but I'm afraid this isn't right for me.

Raven56 said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for querying "Agent for a Day" Agency. Unfortunately, we do not feel this story is a good fit for our list at this time. We encourage you to continue querying other agents.

Best of luck,

Raven56

Bekkoni said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for your submisson. Unfortunately, this work is not right for me at this time.

Best Wishes,
Bekkoni

(reason: too much about other stuff, and a rather vague plot discription.)

Maricar said...

Dear Author,
Thank you for your query. However, your work does not fit our needs at this time. Best of luck.

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