As I polished my query letter and synopsis for the umpteenth time this morning, I realized something ironic. I query the best of the established agents in my genre first, of course, but they get to see the least succinct and polished version of them. With every rejection, I go back and look for more ways to improve, find them, rewrite the Q & S and send them out again.
By the time I have a truly compelling query letter and synopsis, all who will be left to receive it will be new agents who have yet to make a name for themselves. They get to see the best of the queries and synopses, while the most reputable agents see the first and worst of them. Not that I sent those puppies out prematurely, it’s just another example of “mountain climbing” (See my post, “Mountain-Climbing,” September 25, 2012.)
It’s an inherent flaw in agents using queries to triage the deluge because writing a sales pitch is very different from writing a novel. Those of us still grappling with the finer points of queries and synopses are “the ones that got away,” and a boon to new agents who end up with the final product.
So, take heart, New Agent, my query’s heading your way.