if itโ€™s too difficult for grown-ups, write for children

Random Numbers for your perusal

Curious about the breakdown in queries I receive? I hope so, otherwise I’ve wasted a huge amount of time tracking these things by the numbers! Nathan Bransford shared some of his recent stats the other day, and inspired me to do the same. So, at the time I read Nathan’s post, I had 157 unread emails in my query folder. A few of them turned out to be misdirected, or better sent to other folders to deal with, which left me with 151 queries. Of those, the breakdown was as follows:
26 General Young Adult queries

  • plus 1 YA Historical
  • 33 YA fantasies, including paranormal, magical realism, etc.
  • and 5 YA Science Fiction

13 Middle Grade queries

  • plus 10 MG fantasies

6 Literary Fiction queries*
10 Mystery/Suspense/Thriller queries*
18 Women’s Fiction queries, including romance
2 Memoirs or Narrative Nonfiction
13 Adult fantasy novels
2 Adult Science fiction queries
1 Picture Book*
1 Book of Poetry*
1 Gay Novel (as per the author’s own description)
2 Early Chapter Books*
2 General Nonfiction proposals*
4 queries I couldn’t qualify
and 1 for a project that wasn’t actually a book.
Of those 151 (if I’ve done my math correctly), 15, or 10%, were not personalized. And to break some hearts, I only requested 1 partial. And the asterisks above refer to genres or categories that I don’t actually represent. So count that as 22 books directed incorrectly to me.
And for your entertainment, you should know that 3 authors actually managed to misspell the word “query”, “submission”, or the title of their own book. Six queries featured characters who woke up on the first sample page. One email was just a link to a self-published book without an actual query attached, and 3 were addressed to another agent or agency altogether.
Hope that’s somewhat interesting! For my part, I think I enjoy live-blogging my queries more than I like just looking at the numbers. Next time, we’ll get back to that.

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