Lauren Is Closed To Queries!
S.P. Sabo @S_P_Sabo@laurenspieller I’m late to the party, but I have a question.
Does it give you red flags if a writer says their MS is a mixture of different genres? My MS doesn’t fit neatly into one category and my beta readers say they’ve never read anything like it. If it’s a good story, does genre matter?
I love things that blend genre but at the end of the day I need to know what shelf this book is going to sit on. #askagent
Lauren Spieller 📖 @laurenspiellerHonestly I am torn about this because on the one hand I do think revealing your age might color the agent’s perspective, but I also like to know when I am talking to someone underage because I am far more likely to give specific feedback should I pass. (1/2) twitter.com/MarlaTerry1/st…
That being said: I have a client who was 17 when I signed her! Her writing was fantastic and when we moved forward I made sure to speak with her parents so that they would be involved. We also had them co-sign her agency agreement. (2/2) #askagent
LBurd is querying @LisaBurdige@laurenspieller I heard you are not supposed to call your work "literary" aka a "literary contemporary fantasy" because it's not to you to decide if your work is "literary." Is that true? And thanks for doing this
Nope! In publishing, literary refers to style and genre more than it does quality. If you are writing Literary Fantasy then you should absolutely call it that. #askagent
M. Barbier @queen_mab1@laurenspieller If you’ve sent an agent additionally requested pages and not heard back after a while (months), is there a length of time later at which it is polite to email them to ask whether they’ve had a chance to review the pages? Or is that frowned upon? Thanks!
You can absolutely nudge! This is your work and your career so you should always feel comfortable following up as long as a reasonable amount of time has passed. (Personally I think six weeks is reasonable but others might disagree). #askagent
Leslie Scott @leslieSwrites@laurenspieller When you reject a manuscript you actually liked (but didn't fit right for you), do you ask for a resub of other projects? If so, do you remember those authors down the line when they do resub?
Yes and yes (though it helps if they remind me in their query if I’ve read something of theirs before!) #askagent
Crystal Lamb @CrystalLambLit@laurenspieller Hey there (and thanks). How soon after a MS is rejected by one agent in the same agency would it be acceptable to query another agent on a different MS? I've always wondered that. Thanks a bunch for taking questions!
As long as there’s no official rule, you can query right away #askagent
Maureen O’Leary @Maureenow@laurenspieller Do you have any thoughts about building a career writing adult and young adult fiction? Is this a difficult sort of career to manage?
Tons of people do this. See: Heard, Schwab, Bardugo, Oliver. #askagent
annemarie @annemariepett@laurenspieller Do you have any recs on a book that does one element of craft really well? Like, a book with great pacing, or unique voice?
Ooo fun! Off the top of my head:
Voice: GIDEON or The Bartimaeus Trilogy
Pacing: Hunger Games or Six of Crows
Worldbuilding: SCORPIO RACES or COLDEST GIRL IN COLD TOWN
Romy Natalia @RomyNGoldberg@laurenspieller Thoughts on how self-reflective MG characters are allowed to be before they start feeling too YA for your liking?
that’s a hard one to answer in this format, but if you worry a character sounds YA, then you’re probably right. #askagent
Khadijah L. VanBrakle 🇨🇦 @LVanBrakle@laurenspieller do you think coming of age stories in YA will ever be overdone? I do write ownvoices, #AA Muslim MC but I wonder if the topic is old. Does it depend on the perspective? #askagent
I don’t think it’ll ever get old or be over because that’s essentially what YA *is*. But it’s still important to make your story unique. #askagent
Dan Fitzgerald @DanFitzWrites@laurenspieller When querying multi POV novels, is it better to focus on the story, on one of the MCs or give a taste of more than one?
This is hard to answer bc it depends on the story, but if it’s 2 POV, a paragraph per character often works. Also: google this! There are good examples out there! #askagent
Angie Bailey 🏳️🌈 @AWritersLifeTBC@laurenspieller If I apply some edits and fix some cultural issues in a manuscript after I've already submitted it to an agent requesting the full, should I resend? Or ask to resend first?
Also, I've changed the opening a little. Should I contact those I've queried letting them know?
You can resend but make it clear why you’re doing so. #askagent
Jessica Florence @Florence_Jess@laurenspieller Do you think it gives a manuscript an edge when it is professionally edited VS not?
It doesn’t matter to me. I’m here for the story and overall quality, however you achieve that. #askagent
Jade M. Loren 🔮☄ @jadewritesbooks@laurenspieller Would a chapter with the inciting indicent taking place a few years before the rest of the story count more as a prologue, or is it okay to name it chapter one?
If it's a prologue, leave it out of the query sample?
That sounds like a prologue to me, but you could always make it chapter 1 and make chapter 2 start with X Years Later...
Pat Scaramuzza @genocideman@laurenspieller I have an awesome novel with a short (370 word) prologue that I feel is essential. Do you (or agents in general) read that far in, to get to the start of the story? Or will the existence of a prologue mean instant rejection?
Many agents dislike them but if they’re essential then it’s fine. But to hedge your bets...call it ch 1 ;)
Dan Fitzgerald @DanFitz73792558@laurenspieller How important is specific query formatting to you? So many successful queries one finds online seem to diverge strongly from the usual formats one also finds.
I’m not picky about the format, but I prefer not to see writers lead with length bios, especially at the expense of telling me about their book. My only hard rule: no weird fonts 😆 #askagent
Brittney Woodson @brittney_canna@laurenspieller Thank you for responding! From an older ms that got some attention last year, I had received some personal rejections stating they loved the premise but had issues with other things (voice, making some scenes stronger) so I wondered if I revised it differently would it be ok
Yes, but make sure it is TRULY revised