Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Q & A 116


Is it possible to submit a query to you, for real?

Apparently it is, since one of the queries that appeared on this blog showed up in my in-box a while back. Interestingly, I'd gone to the trouble of providing a revised version, and the submitter sent the original version. Not the way to get on my good side.

It's unwise to submit to agents and editors without knowing what kind of books they handle. I have, admittedly, revealed on this blog that I handle books about Norwegian lemon farms and the medieval architecture of northeastern Portugal, but I'm also interested in Italian wines. Not reading about them; drinking them.

Seriously, accepting queries from my minions would change everything, like having sex with your best friend. I'd have to stop blogging or find new minions. Let's just keep it platonic.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Why would you having sex with my best friend be a problem? Other than he's a guy and you're a guy, that is. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

phoenix said...

OK, here's a poser. What if the querier had submitted your revised version to you? Would you have requested the ms? Or would that be more like self-gratification, and even worse than having sex with your BFF?

The intricacies of the editor/agent world can be so befuddling...

BuffySquirrel said...

*tears up query*

Sniff.

Evil Editor said...

What if the querier had submitted your revised version to you?

Tha one was answered in the same post in which I revealed my specialty:

http://evileditor.blogspot.com/2006/05/q-8-you-are-great-ee.html

Chumplet said...

That's what scares me about submitting directly to editors. I might drop one right in Evil Editor's lap.

You know some of us waaaay too well.

But then again, it shouldn't be scary, should it? The ice would be inadvertently broken already.

You can be darn sure I'd be 'Yes Sirring' all over the place. He's so strict!

Nick said...

The way I figure it, if I send out enough queries, the law of averages will probably see to it that one ends up on EE's desk. Of course, not like I'll ever know--and that's what makes part of it fun.

-Nick

Robin S. said...

Hi chumplet-

You may avoid sending directly to editors but still drop your query in EE's lap, or inbox, anyway. EE may be an agent who edits, or an editor who has performed the magic crossover and is now an agent.

I've wondered about that myself.

writtenwyrdd said...

I gather EE doesn't deal with spec fic so I am not worried about subbing to him (her?) on accident. Even if I did, hey, he's probably professional enough not to let me know he recognizes my crap from this blog.

Robin S. said...

Hi takoda,

You're a hoot. And you're right, the South does get kinky. How did you know we had those pictures all saved up for you?

Also- going back to EE's old post (from his comment here) made me want to reread other earlier stuff, as I wasn't around then.

This one struck home: (from 4/26/06)--
"I pay no attention to anything in a query letter other than the author's description of the work, and the author's writing skills, as evidenced by the only thing I have to go on: his or her ability to compose a query letter."

I'm in the middle of writing (rewriting) mine now. It's really no wonder it's such a daunting prospect if you read the above and believe it. And I do.

BuffySquirrel said...

Oh, EE deals with spec fic all right. We careful blog readers know this :).

takoda said...

What is spec fiction? Specialized fiction?

Robin S. said...

OK- I confdess to iognorance on the spec fic deal. I just Googled "spec fic" and got this tidbit from Wikipedia:

"Speculation fiction is a type of fiction that asks the classic "What if?" question and attempts to answer it.

In some contexts, it has been used as an inclusive term covering a group of fiction genres that speculate about worlds that are unlike the real world in various important ways. In these contexts, it generally includes science fiction, fantasy, horror fiction, supernatural fiction, alternate history, and magic realism."

Oh. Good Lord. That's a lot of stuff to keep dry under one umbrella.

Is this correct? And if so, does this include everything from Harry Potter to A Thousand Years of Solitude to The Year of Magical Thinking?

All right, that's an exaggeration, but you know what I mean.

writtenwyrdd said...

speculative fiction, aka science fiction/fantasy

Bonnie said...

Also sometimes including horror, alternate history, steampunk, paranormal romance...

December/Stacia said...

I kind of like that EE keeps his other identity secret (I would say "true identity" but we all know EE is the true one.)

Unless by some chance I ever ended up working with him, in which case I would want to know. :-)

writtenwyrdd said...

Want to be confused? Define a 'slipstream' story. Gar.

Basically, most folks seem to think that anything which is primarily surreal or science fiction can be spec fic. Horror and paranormal fall under that, too, IMO, but like so many genre questions, it seems to be argued as to where to split the hair...

Robin S. said...

EE (or, I mean, his scribe) doesn't seem like a steampunk kinda guy to me.

You've got a weird and interesting point there, Stacia. I'd want to know, too. Although I don't do steampunk or even know what it is, so I guess I'm safe, whether he's an editor, an editor/agent, an agent/editor, or a writer/editor/agent, or a...

ME said...

Careful reading of EE's response would seem to indicate that someone(disavowing minion status) submitting a well-written query containing a deviously twisted plot involving a lemon-grower (of Nordic descent)zombie-come-lately who escapes from a fringe group of Basque separatists and takes up residence in a creepy castle along the river Douro and finds true love and the best sex ever and thoughtfully including a fine Chianti along with said query, might have a chance at getting published. Or not.

Chumplet said...

Don't forget the sharks under the Zamboni.

Anonymous said...

Google is your friend, people. It's not that hard to track the guy down.

pacatrue said...

Or the parasitic brain worms from space.

Sincerely,

Horn-Dog

Robin S. said...

Hi Takoda,

I think Horndog likes his new name...

What does a Horndog look like, generically speaking? You've got a way of finding the right picture (as that picture of EE's backside testifies to).... so...

let's see a Horndog.

Chumplet said...

Oh. I thought you said corn dog. I'm hungry.

BuffySquirrel said...

Steampunk. Think Victorian-era setting with modern technology as-designed-by-Victorians.