In the Trenches: The Obsession to Organize

textured surface of steel plate with bulges

Too much stuff.

I repeat, way too much stuff to follow.

What am I banging on about? Organization of all those wee little details that can trip you up is crucial in the querying pocess. What are some of those little toe-catchers? Follow along for a ‘for example’.

You are researching an agent to approach.
You find their name.
You find their pronouns.
You find the agency they represent.
You find their interests.
It’s a match. You craft that letter and hit send.

So, where’s the problem?

So where is the problem in that cascade of events? Initially, there probably isn’t one. However as you move deeper into the wilds looking for an agent you may find that Agent A and Agent R are both in the same agency.

This is where you need to know a few more details than you might have already collected. For instance, what is the agency policy towards you, the author, querying more than one agent with a project? Or, are they a one and done shop? In which case you had better choose the best fit on the first go round.

And, much as I like QueryTracker, that is a piece of information they do not track. Don’t get confused, they do have a way to let you know if you have already queried that agency. They provide a little red checkmark next to the agency name if you’ve already waded in those waters. Conveniet, but confusing.

Confusing because that little checkmark only tells you if you have submitted to that agency previously. It doesn’t relate any information (as far as I can tell) about the policy of the agency towards querying more than one of their agents. It doesn’t let you know if the agency is a ‘one and done’ shop or a group that welcomes more than one contact.

A small, but important detail.

Especially if, like me, you have this paralyzing response to the thought of “Oh, did I do something wrong?” Actually that should look more like…


You might see where this is leading. Good news, yesterday I carefully selected and pushed out another five queries. And, you see it right… but…. did I goof? I’m still trying to track that little piece of information down. Bother.

Ah, well. There goes another piece of my stomach lining.

2 responses to “In the Trenches: The Obsession to Organize”

  1. Querying is *such* a fraught process. I have two outstanding that are nearing QT’s dreaded 120-day threshold for automatic closure. Fingers crossed for you!

    • I’ll admit, I turned that 120 day feature off. I did it because so many agents are incredibly far behind. I wondered if I was elminating myself from their consideration by just not giving them enough time.
      Who knows?

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