QueryTracker Blog

Helping Authors Find Literary Agents

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

The Latest QT Newsletter

Well, I’m a bit behind on this newsletter again, but as usual things on QueryTracker have been busy, and as usual, I am using that as my excuse.

Last month I mentioned that the QueryTracker membership had doubled every month since its inception, and that I hoped we could keep that up. Well, I was skeptical about it at the time since in order to double our membership in October we would have had to sign up 1,500 members. That would have been a lot of new members, and unfortunately we didn’t quite make it. But I’m not disappointed because we came really close and had our best month ever with about 1,000 new members, giving us a total of 2,500+ users. The data pool is also filling up nicely with over 16,000 queries being tracked.

These phenomenal numbers would not have been possible without the kind contributions of our Premium Members. For those of you who don’t know, Premium Members are members who have donated $25 to QueryTracker to help it grow. 100% of all funds collected goes to purchase advertising. This advertising brings in more members and hence more data for everyone. In exchange for their generosity, Premium Members are given access to some advanced features on QueryTracker not available to general members.

I recently ran across a blog that was so full of useful information for writers that I thought I just had to point it out to others. The blog is http://writesabouteverything.blogspot.com/ and it is written by a QueryTracker user named Deborah White. On it you can find information about agent contracts, book rights, query letters, and a lot more. It really is worth looking at. And speaking of worthy blogs, my good friend Jason Robinson has written a very good little article on coping with rejection. It is on the QueryTracker blog at http://querytracker.blogspot.com/2007/10/rejection.html.

New Agents - Guilty Until Proven Innocent
I am asked all the time to add new agents to the QueryTracker database. I encourage users to submit new agents and I’m always happy to add them, but only if they pass certain criteria. There are a lot of so called agents out there who do not have a writer’s best interests at heart, and I do everything I can to keep them off of the QueryTracker list. Which means I subscribe to the guilty until proven innocent school of thought when it comes to agents. If someone proposes an agent and I can’t find enough evidence online to relieve suspicion, then that “agent” is not going to be listed. Unfortunately, this means that sometimes legitimate agents are rejected, but I would rather err on the side of caution and not list a hundred legitimate agents then to list one scammer. I do this because I feel it is my obligation to protect QueryTracker users from these scammers.

For those of you who have submitted agents that were not listed, I apologize for any inconvenience. If you have any evidence in support of them, please email me so it can be resolved.

So, does that mean you can be absolutely sure that there are no scammer agents listed on QueryTracker? I wish that were true, but sadly no. I say no because you should never trust any single source when agents are concerned. Always get a second, third and fourth opinion. Double check with AgentQuery, Preditors & Editors, Writer’s Beware and other such sites. And not just for legitimacy either. Check contact info and submission requirements as well. What you are doing is too important to leave to chance. There is no such thing as a one-stop source for agent information.

Success Stories
I am starting a bookshelf of sorts. This bookshelf will contain the books of QueryTracker users who, with the help of QueryTracker, have found agents. So if anyone out there has a success story to share, please let me know.

QueryTracker version 2.0
I am also hard at work on a new version of QueryTracker. It will be faster and easier to use, while still retaining all the features and abilities you have come to know and appreciate. So, if you have ever wished QueryTracker would include another feature or found something that you thought would work better another way, here is your chance to speak up. All suggestions, ideas, bug reports, and criticisms are appreciated and will be considered.

Please use this link to make a suggestion http://querytracker.net/contact.php?q=2

Thank you, and until next time, keep writing.

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