QueryTracker Blog

Helping Authors Find Literary Agents

Monday, January 5, 2009

What, Why and Who is QueryTracker.net?

It is the intention of the QT blog team to do a post each week about one of our favorite QueryTracker.net or RallyStorm.com features.  I'll tell you my favorite feature at the end of this post, but first I thought it best to get folks who are unfamiliar with QT and its origins up to speed on the what, why and who of QueryTracker.net.

The first time I met Patrick McDonald, the creator of QueryTracker, was when he emailed to congratulate me for signing with my agent.  Up until that point, QueryTracker had been a tool

I searched for agents by genre; researched them through the QT links to the agency websites, AgentQuery and Predators & Editors that were on the QT agent profiles; logged my query responses; and finally, clicked on the sunglass-wearing smiley icon indicating I'd received an offer of representation.  I dutifully filled out my success story interview and expected to leave QueryTracker.net behind.  Wrong!  

There is a QueryTracker.net forum.  Did you know that?  Addictive as all-get-out.  I'm hooked.  I no longer need the query tracking features of the main site, but I'm a regular on the forum, which I didn't discover until after I had signed with my agent.  ...and then there's this blog.  Hmmm. QT feels like family now.

One of the most remarkable things about QueryTracker.net is the person behind the site.  I had always thought that QT was a commercial endeavor created to generate income for... someone.  Turns out that the someone was an aspiring writer named Patrick McDonald, who had become frustrated with the overwhelming and confusing submission process.  He created QT not to make money, but to simplify the query process.  Once he came up with a way to keep track of which agents had been queried and their responses, he decided it would be more effective if he made it a "social data gathering site" where lots of writers could input data about agents based on their personal experiences thereby revealing patterns in agent requests, response times and preferences.  
The result is brilliant!  While using QT's main site, I knew (based on other writers' input) that one agent tended to take eight weeks to respond while another averaged only two days.  I could tell which agents rejected by non-response; this kept me from re-querying or becoming angsty when I didn't hear back within a reasonable period of time.  I could arrange my selected agents in order of desirability, which dictated my submission schedule.  The most important thing was I felt informed while I queried.  That goes a long way in a process that is shrouded in mystery and misinformation.  Any writer who has had to keep up with queries and responses can appreciate the value of real information. 

What?  A social data gathering site to help aspiring authors submit to agents intelligently.  Why?  To simplify and demystify the query process.  Who?  Writers' advocate extraordinaire, Patrick McDonald (who just happens to by my favorite QueryTracker.net and RallyStorm.com feature).

On behalf of aspiring authors, thanks, Pat.  



Christine Fonseca said...

I could not agree with this post more...THANK YOU PAT FOR QT

Lady Glamis said...

I'm currently taking a break from the blogs until tomorrow, but hopped on your site for a sec as I was checking email.

I'm so excited to learn more about QueryTracker! I'm lost to it all at the moment, but will dive in soon as I get my two novels polished and ready to query.

I like your little graphic. I'm going to put it on my blog so others can be guided here. Thanks for everything, guys, ahem, gals. :)