QueryTracker Blog

Helping Authors Find Literary Agents

Friday, April 1, 2011

Publishing Pulse for April 1, 2011

Oh, and our artwork won an award!
Happy First of April! This has been a tremendous week, hasn't it? I have no idea how we're even going to fit all these ideas into one Pulse, but let's get started!

New At QueryTracker

After months of giddy silence, we are thrilled to announce  QueryTracker: The Movie!  It's the story of a man (played by Robert Pattinson) who chooses to use his literary prowess for the greater good, programming a database of literary agents, and the five hot women who are drawn to his quest. Soundtrack will be by John Williams, and the closing theme song to be sung by Nickelback. Mary Lindsey will even get to do a cameo in the movie! We hope you're as excited about it as we are.

We're also delighted to announce that we're coming up to our one billionth query letter submitted by the members of QueryTracker! And to celebrate the occasion, the writer who submits the one-billionth query letter will have a chance at a partial request, a full, or even an offer of representation, just for submitting that query letter! So go ahead and submit: you never know!

New Feature For QueryTracker Members

From now on, each agent's listing will include the agent's favorite recipes so queriers can promise to make them a home-cooked meal if offered representation. Look for it under "Reports."

New QueryTracker Success Stories

An actual vampire signed with an agent through QueryTracker, later that week landing a six-figure deal on, ironically, an adult contemporary novel about two gardeners who find love while mulching a blackberry bush.

Another QueryTracker member scored an agent and a deal for The Complete Idiot's Guide To Writing A Complete Idiot's Guide.

Publishing News

New Species Of Shark To Be Named After Literary Agent! Discovered off the coast of Libretto, Italy, Carcharodon scriptorum comedentis (to be called the E'er Reid Shark) has been named for the QueryShark herself. In a private ceremony in Washington, DC, the scientist who discovered it took a publicity photo with Janet Reid, then tried to pitch his memoir.

Some agents have changed to only accepting singing query letters.  Queriers can email or mail a recording of themselves singing about the next bestseller, or show up in person to serenade the agent. This seismic shift occurred after literary agent Amanda Lynne (of the Claire Annette Agency) wrote on her agency guidelines to "make sure to sing your query letter," and spell-check didn't catch the issue until after she hit publish. But as she said, "After the first week or two, I realized a lot of authors are uninhibited in song, and you can get a much better sense of the story that way, especially when they use their hook as the chorus." (Pubtip: if your novel has multiple POVs, you have to write the query in multiple parts, and those parts have to harmonize.)

Around The Blogosphere

Industry expert Joanna Wilkinson-Kenderly reports that nine out of ten literary agents have experienced at least one unicorn sighting.

Former agent Nathaniel Brindsfield blogs how he was desperate to score a deal for his client, and after being told by an editor that they'd publish his author's title "when pigs fly," he invented a cannon to shoot pigs ninety-five feet in the air. (He got the deal.) 

At the blog of Anonymous Editorial Coffee-Fetcher, he or she describes several ways they sort the slush pile: throwing darts, folding query letters into paper airplanes for races (fastest airplane wins a partial request!) and reading only the words that appear in the rings left by their coffee mugs.

Agent Rochelle Garden give step-by-step instructions for turning a stack of partials into a rich garden mulch.

Literary Quote Of The Week

"Revision is for those lamest of men who fail to get it right the first time. I never rewrite a thing." -J.R.R. Tolkien

Jane Lebak is an unbelievable wiseacre who writes stuff from time to time and occasionally makes people laugh on purpose. She's been blogging with QueryTracker since last fall, which is about the same time a wave of unexplained headaches swept the nation. She is represented by the very forgiving Roseanne Wells of the Marianne Strong Literary Agency, who didn't mind that Jane's sung query was off-key.


Sophia the Writer said...


Oh how I needed that laugh. And my that was some good harmonizing on the rejection query...I think if I got that in my inbox I would actually laugh instead of cry. And then I would cry on the inside.

Thanks for lightening us up during this process!

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

I figured there would be at least one April Fools joke in there but I never expected the THREE that I found.


Kidding. Great, yet ridiculous, news!

Mary Lindsey said...

Well done!

Stacy S. Jensen said...

Oh that was funny.

Krissy Brady said...

hahaha Thank you for this! What a great way to start my day. :)

Henri said...

I can't wait to see the movie. What's the rating?

Suzette Saxton said...

Oh that was fantastic! Literally still laughing. Fun, fun, fun!!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Awesome job, Jane! Loved the singing rejection. I'm now figuring out my query in song. I think I've got the harmony figured out. Agents will be begging for requests now. :D

Jane said...

Well, begging for something, Stina. :-)

Jane said...

Henri, the movie's rated G for "goofy." ;-)

Valerie Ipson said...


Patrick said...

So, wait... Are you saying there WON'T be a movie? :(

Jane said...

Look at the contract, Patrick. :-)

emy shin said...


This? Is the best April Fools' joke!

Lydia K said...

Nice tune! Ha ha!

Josh Hoyt said...

Very funny!! great post.

Huntress said...


you suckered me in.
*smacks head*

I saw RPatz and sat up.

you evil, evil people

Jane said...

Sorry, Huntress. Mea culpa. Mea culpa. Mea maxima culpa.

Ishta Mercurio said...

HA! Hilarious. Especially loved the description of Querytracker: The Movie! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Thanks!

Donna Perugini said...

Four days late in reading your posting but it was awesome and worth the wait!!

Your sense of humor should be made into an e-book!

Donna Perugini said...

Four days late in reading your posting but it was awesome and worth the wait!!

Your sense of humor should be made into an e-book!

janflora said...

Wish I'd seen this Friday. Very good! :)