Reader Question: Resending Queries

  • By: Jessica Faust | Date: Jan 09 2007

If a query had been sent to an agent at a large (I mean LARGE) agency and no response was forthcoming for over nine months, would it be acceptable to resend a new, improved query to a more suitable agent in the same house?

Yes, I did include an SASE. Plus, upon further inspection of the agent’s preferences, he may not represent the genre I sent anyway. Therefore a nudge would probably be inappropriate.

I include my thanks for your excellent advice. You soooo rock!

Yes, if you have learned that there is another agent who would be better for the type of work you’re writing, I do think it’s okay to resend that query. However, I would contact the first agent for a status request first and/or to let her know that you have since revised your work and are pulling your original from submission.

Whatever you do in situations involving agents, do it with courtesy and professionalism. Remember, this is the beginning of a career for you and the end of your hobby. For agents it’s a day-to-day business. While I don’t advise sending the same work to two agents at the same house at the same time, I do think it’s acceptable to requery a different agent if you feel she’s more appropriate. That being said, if an agent has rejected your work, don’t retaliate by sending it to every other agent in-house hoping that there’s another who might accept it. In all liklihood the other agents already know it’s been rejected and might have even been included in the process. Instead keep her or them in mind for your next work.

And thank you, I like to think I’m a little bit rockstar.


4 responses to “Reader Question: Resending Queries”

  1. Avatar Anonymous says:

    Yes, but how long do you wait to resend a query when you haven’t mistaken the preferences of the agent and you just haven’t heard from them? And their website offers no guidance? Two months? Four months? Never?

  2. Avatar jfaust says:

    I think as long as you pull it from consideration you can pull it as quickly as you like. Keep in mind though that agents do talk a lot and might wonder why you pull material after a week and send it to someone else a week later. Also note, most agencies do share submissions so in all likelihood they will pass yours around if they feel it’s worthwhile to have someone else look at it.


  3. Avatar jfaust says:

    And a quick aside here, be careful of your reasoning. It has amazed me over the years how often authors have sent material to Agent A over Agent B (even if Agent A requested it) because they thought they knew better (and usually they don’t). Areas of interest are blurred and unless you’ve met an agent personally or heard directly from an Agent’s mouth that your book won’t work for her it’s hard to tell exactly what she is looking for. If that makes sense.


  4. Avatar Michele Lee says:

    In a similar vein, what if you sent an agent you’d love to have a really bad (I’m talking “Hello my name is, I do this, oh yeah and I wrote a book…”) query more than a year ago AND the novel itself has be rehauled since then. Is it ok to send another query?