Jess Lucas 🥀🖤🍏 @storybrookelaneHi. I have a Wattpad question too. If I have a book with over 13k reads, is that an impressive number to add to my query while querying another MS? I have added that it was shortlisted for their Wattys awards but wondering about that too. #askPSLA
It sounds like a good number to me, but honestly I personally don’t care either way about it versus how much I love the new project. So it’s tough to judge, sorry! #askPSLA
Robin Zabiegalski 🦄 @amiafeministtoo@kurestinarmada I have a pretty robust digital media portfolio. Is that considered or just nonfiction pieces in litmags?
Digital outlets definitely count, so you're in good shape there! #askPSLA
Robin Zabiegalski 🦄 @amiafeministtooWhat makes a nonfiction (memoir style essay collection) query stand out for you? What do I NEED to include to maximize my chances for a book proposal request? #askPSLA
Being published elsewhere in reputable places (whether for those essays or different nonfic pieces) is pretty essential as a starting point. #askPSLA
Lisa Roman @life_with_rileyIs there ever an instance where it’s acceptable to re-query an agent that has already passed on your work (by not responding at all), say after a certain amount of time has passed and/or after major revisions to your MS and query letter? #askPSLA
It's probably fine if you did major revisions and mention it in the new query (so they don't think you're trying to pull a fast one). #askPSLA
Francesca Tacchi @jackdaw_writes#askPSLA as an Italian writer currently working my way in the query trenches, I fear the fact I'm not an English native speaker may 'scare' agents away. Is this a valid fear, or would an agent not consider my nationality relevant, as long as the story is strong?
If the writing is good enough to stand alongside what else is on the shelf, no one will care! I rep a lot of authors living abroad, so it's all fine. #askPSLA
Lisa-Michelle Kucharz @lmkucharzI’m fairly new to the process of seeking representation for my memoir. What would you suggest I look for in an agent and agency? #askPSLA
People who rep the kinds of memoirs you want to write would be a good start! It sounds a bit obvious, but it's the best way to start narrowing the field. #askPSLA
𝖒𝖆𝕶𝖆𝖞𝖑𝖆 𝖘𝖔𝖕𝖍𝖎𝖆 ❄️ @makayla_sophiaIs it usually okay if a writer has made a different project available on sites like Wattpad but is querying something new? Would the old project deter their chances? #askPSLA
The old project wouldn't affect their chances at all! And if the numbers are stunning, it may help. #askPSLA
Keala @kkealakaiWith YA sci-fi, what type of projects would you like to see? (Space opera, Black Mirror, cyberpunk, etc.) It seems like only soft sci-fi, like Black Mirror, and space opera are really taking off while the rest of YA sci-fi remains a hard sell. #askPSLA
YA SF is incredibly hard right now, in almost all areas. So it's not something I'm actively looking for, versus adult SF where I definitely want to see all of it. But something that's close to our world but just a bit off would definitely be interesting! #askPSLA
Noreen @naziasoCan bio be non-writing? Specially if it’s ownvoices? #askpsla
Sure! It's always nice to have a few details in there that make someone feel human and real. And sometimes non-writing stuff is still super relevant, like a lawyer writing legal thrillers or something similar. #askPSLA
Ayana Gray @AyanaGrayWhat sorts of things in a YA fantasy make you immediately request (besides good writing) or immediately pass (a trope you don’t like)? #askPSLA
I love to be surprised, so it's hard to pick a "definitely request" item, but I will almost always pass on anything involving angels/demons and magic systems that are too simple and just tied to the four elements. #askPSLA
Chris Bedell @ChrisBedellIs it bad for a YA Thriller to be 55k words to 59k words? Should it be at least 60k words? Or is 55k words to 59k words okay if it's Contemporary? #askPSLA
That feels short to me, especially because I think of YA thrillers as a bit older in the age range. But if the query is good I think people will still request it! #askPSLA
Rhiannon Lotze @RhiannonLotze1. What common phrases about fictional works do you absolutely hate seeing in query letters?
2. When an agent turns down a query, is it protocol to send them a final thank you email or should you leave them be to avoid cluttering their inbox?
1. There aren't a lot, mainly just people talking about how funny the book is without actually telling a joke, or other similar things like "heart-breaking" etc when I should get that from the query.
2. You're fine either way, there's no real protocol!
Maria Vicente @msmariavicente@kevintreaccar Illustration notes should only be used when the illustrations add understanding to the story that the reader won't get from the text alone. #askPSLA
If it's a project from an author/illustrator though, I want to see a complete dummy of the picture book and not just the text. #askPSLA
Tesse Struve @StruveTesseIs YA still a pretty hot genre? I’ve heard rumors it’s starting to slow in popularity. Thanks! #askPSLA
Sales are starting to shrink and it's definitely starting to slow a bit, though it's by no means disappearing. I think middle grade is where people are really hungry for some truly excellent stuff, and there's a lot of breathing room for cool concepts! #askPSLA
Jaynie Hylton @jayniehyltonAre publishers hesitant about hiring debut illustrators or does the strength of the portfolio outweigh inexperience? #askPSLA
Every editor I've talked to lately says they would love to find more illustrators to add to their pool! So I think the portfolio definitely outweighs inexperience, it's all about showing you can do the kind of work required--but exp does help get your name out there. #askPSLA
Amy G Nash, LCPC @trotter47Would you advise a writer to seek an editor who o look over the manuscript before seeking an agent? #askPSLA
No, that's hardly ever necessary. But if you're feeling like you need an extra boost or don't have critique partners for free help, it can certainly be useful to get feedback on your first 20 pages or so and learn how to apply that to the entire MS. #askPSLA
N. Nasim Homer @HomerNasimWhen you meet an agent at a lit conference, what is the appropriate way to approach them about your manuscript? Do you pitch them immediately or just let them know you would like to query them? Also is it okay to follow up a few months after or does time run out? #askPSLA
You can pitch them if you want (assuming you mean in the hallway and not in a meeting), but querying is free so it may be better than memorizing a pitch. Instead consider asking them things to get insight into what they like/the industry and use that in your query later! #askPSLA
Angelique Stefanelli 🦂 @ac_stefanelliFor adult fiction (fantasy in particular), what are the best ways to make certain readers aren’t turned off by younger MCs (child/teen aged)? And are adult POVs required if it’s adult fantasy? #askPSLA
Generally it's all about the way you write it--a common technique is to make it clear that the child POV is actually the adult "looking back" on events. I would do a lot of careful reading of ones that do this well, like the Farseer books! #askPSLA
Adriëlle @AdrielleBlaasWhat is you opinion of softer heroines in YA Fantasy compared to the current trend of hardened/angry ones? Are they a tougher sell? #askPSLA
I don't think they affect the salability of a project at all, I've never heard an editor express strong feelings either way. The concept, writing, and strength of the voice are all going to matter way more than the particular personality of the MC. #askPSLA
Kevin M Moehring @kevinmmoehring#askPSLA I'm new to the whole pitch and query thing. I honestly never thought I'd write more than a single book. I'm currently finishing the third in a series. Are books that are part of a pre-existing series looked down upon during the query process?
Do you mean trying to query book three or four in an already published series? Because then yes, it will be very difficult to get representation for a project like that. But if you just mean you have several books done and are querying Book 1, you're probably fine. #askPSLA