Blogger: Rachelle Gardner
You’ve heard all the ways to impress a literary agent. You’ve learned how to write a synopsis and build a platform and comment on agent blogs. You know the ins & outs of queries and proposals and the Holy Grail: Writing a Great Book. So wouldn’t it be fun to annoy a literary agent for a change?
I’ve got some ideas for you. You’re welcome.
1. Use a generic greeting (To Whom It May Concern or my favorite, Dear Sirs) or address it to the wrong name. (It’s Rachelle. R.a.c.h.e.l.l.e.)
2. In your query, mention that there has been no book quite as amazing as yours since To Kill a Mockingbird, and that it’s destined to become an instant classic and Hollywood will be calling any minute.
3. Forget to include a Starbucks card. (I’m KIDDING, okay? I do not accept bribes. Except maybe chocolate. But no, just KIDDING. Really.)
4. Check on the status of your query daily. “Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?”
5. Slide your proposal under the bathroom stall at a writers conference. (Though this would be considered a kind gesture if the agent’s stall happens to be out of toilet paper.)
6. Slam the publishing industry in your query. Or explain how your book will save publishing.
7. Pitch 27 different book ideas in the same query and ask the agent which one she would like to represent first.
8. Submit projects that the agent doesn’t represent, explaining that you’re certain she will change her mind once she sees how brilliantly your techno-fantasy-historical-noir-romance-memoir is written.
9. Pitch a hackneyed plot we’ve seen a thousand times and fail to include even one tiny element that makes it feel unique or fresh.
10. Say in your query that you realize the agent has a blog but you’ve never read it because after all, you’re a serious writer and you just don’t have time for that kind of thing, you’re too busy writing and all that. (LIE, people, seriously.)
Okay, your turn. Let’s title today’s comments Ways to Annoy a Writer. Go for it.
Just what you’ve always wanted… 10 ways to annoy a literary agent. Click to Tweet.
Slide your manuscript under the bathroom stall–agents LOVE that! And more tips via @RachelleGardner. Click to Tweet.
“Pitch 27 book ideas in one query” – and other ways to annoy a literary agent. Click to Tweet.