I recently stumbled across another lit agent's blog, Nathan Bransford, who offers some valuable information. This week, in response to Jessica Faust's AgentFail blog topic comments, he is letting all writers be Agents for a Day.
He's posted 50 anonymous queries, and is asking authors to respond to each one with an accept or reject. Authors can request up to 5 manuscripts out of 50. Everything has to be done by this upcoming Saturday, making it about 10 queries per day to review.
Check out his blog.
One thing I have learned from this exercise (and there are many!) is that there are many queries which come in that hold no personal interest to me whatsoever. It's easy to send a form rejection in those cases, but is that really helping a fellow writer? I tried adding in comments for every reject I gave, but it began taking up so much time that I couldn't continue unless I *really* saw something special in the writer's query.
This also lets me know that I need to go back and thank those agents who were kind enough to send personalized reasons why a certain manuscript of mine was not right for them. Any of these tips helps, and helps us navigate our way to the publication path.
So THANK YOU to those lit agents who respond to our queries and let us know your thoughts. You're helping writers everywhere.