Why is BookEnds Behind on Queries

  • By: Jessica Faust | Date: Sep 08 2020

You might have noticed that a number of BookEnds agents closed to queries in August. While others posted about catching up. If you queried, you definitely noticed that the Agents of BookEnds had fallen behind.

BookEnds agents each handle their own queries. We don’t have interns read them and we don’t have a central address where all queries drop. As you’ll see on our submissions page, we each have our own Query Manager account. We each read every query and reply ourselves.

In 2020, each agent is receiving an average of 400+ queries a month. Each of us. That means BookEnds as a whole is receiving roughly 4000 queries a month.

Query Statistics

Statistically speaking, of all our query responses about 10% are requests. It’s probably more, but that’s about average. That would mean we are each requesting about 40 submissions a month. That’s 40 books a month to read, on top of the daily work we do for our clients, including edits and reading.

To put this in perspective, my reading goal for the year is 50 books.

How You Can Help

I’m not complaining about these numbers. In fact, while it’s overwhelming, it’s also thrilling. 4000 authors each month want to work with us. The potential in Query Manager is exciting. With each letter I read I wonder if this is the book I’ve dreamed of.

The only thing we need from authors is patience and communication. We’re all working to get through our inboxes as fast as we can. We’ve also been taking on a lot of new clients and selling a lot of current clients and, especially exciting for you, debut authors. That means we’re busy working on revisions, submitting material, reviewing contracts, and discussing career plans. That also means our response time goals have slipped. We apologize for that and promise you will get a response, it just might take longer than we’d all hoped.

As for communication, if you get an offer of representation please notify us. Our slow response doesn’t mean we aren’t interested, it just means we’re busy. It doesn’t mean we aren’t excited about your work, it just means we haven’t gotten to it yet. The best way to do this is through the handy button in your Query Manager status. The one that says “report an offer.”

That’s the button that will alert us in all sorts of ways so we don’t miss anything.

2020 has been a roller coaster and it’s clear to see that many have used this time to follow their dreams of being a writer. For that, we’re grateful, because we’ve already seen some really promising new talent and hope that soon we’ll be introducing you to them all.

9 responses to “Why is BookEnds Behind on Queries”

  1. Avatar Miriam says:


  2. Avatar Gary Pulford says:

    It’s warming to see interaction and explanation to anticipated timelines concerning submissions.
    In my personal circumstance, I have completed two novels and am pushing onwards with a third in the series. Is there merit to delaying submission of my works until the third in the series is completed?

  3. Avatar janice lance says:

    This blog today was terrific. It helps to understand the amount of submissions and queries you carefully go through, and I was delighted that queries and submissions don’t go through an intern but go directly to the agent. It was overwhelming to read that you go through at least 40 books a month! Whew! Blessings to you for Bookends . You are a fantastic agency and every author’s dream and hope to be able to be a part of.

  4. Avatar Steve vanotzzi says:

    That is without exception the most positive and hopeful things that I have read in a while so I’m going to have a look at submission for my first book Thank you for your comforting words

  5. Avatar AJ Blythe says:

    I think the one thing writers need to learn regardless of who they query is patience. Nothing about this industry is fast paced!

    Congrats on being so busy 🙂

  6. Avatar Kiersten Marcil says:

    One of the things I like about the many posts and YouTube videos that BookEnds has put out is that (they are incredibly useful! and) they all demonstrate how very dedicated your agency is to authors. The fact that you put out this post to help ease some of the stress of new authors going through the query process is really generous of your time and supportive. Thank you.

  7. Thanks for sharing. It’s great to hear how much you have going on and that you’re doing your best to stay in touch.

  8. Avatar Rose Solomon says:

    This was a very informative, helpful, even encouraging post! It’s clear that BookEnds is a caring, compassionate organization — thank you for that!

  9. Avatar Connie says:

    I am so happy to have found your blog! Your insight into your daily grind is very helpful for those who only see a curtain we wish to peek behind. Thank you for your honesty and for explaining the process in an approachable way.