Pay Attention, Stupid

Google Home Page has been increasingly deficient in updating modules with new blog posts. I follow a collection of industry people who post daily and lately, some of their posts haven't been showing up until days later. That was another impetus for me to switch from LJ to Blogger. The Blogger Dashboard is much more effective at telling me when content is available. (I'm told it's the same thing as Reader, but I started with Google Homepage when I had a lot of non-blog modules included as well, but they have fallen away over the years.)

One such industry person is Jessica Faust from BookEnds, LLC, a literary agency I queried for BLACK MAGIC AND BARBECUE SAUCE. She posted her form rejection letter on her blog today, and I wanted to compare it to the one I received (identical, in case you were wondering). It struck me that it was only to BM&BBQ and not WCO. Why hadn't I queried her again?

So I went to her agent page and saw the reason. She only reps contemporary fantasy, which Black Magic was. Wanted is pure classic fantasy.


Now, if you've done your homework properly, you know I'm wrong. She reps contemporary, fantasy. That reads "contemporary [COMMA] fantasy"

You see, that comma was at the end of the line and I skipped right over it. Right over. Woosh! Here's an agent whose blog I follow daily (where I participate almost as frequently) who I could have queried MONTHS ago, but because I missed one stupid comma, I did not send her anything.

So the rule that says do your homework before querying an agent? Here's a sub-clause: Pay attention, stupid.

Oh yeah! While the above remains a smart lesson, in this case, the decision not to query was intentional. I read an interview with Jessica where she voiced a firm opinion of word counts, which WCO surpasses by 30,000+ words.