Thursday, July 9, 2009

A fly on the wall in the slush pile: Thoughts from agent, Elana Roth

Have you ever wished you could be a fly on the wall as a editor or agent goes through their query stash? Just to get a glimpse into what they are thinking . . . now that would be good info to possess. If only I had enough of this inside info I could be like . . . like a writing Jedi; enlightened, wise, and my likeness could be cloned into a pointy-eared action figure.

One nice thing about twitter is that you can "follow" agents and editors without looking like cRaZeD stalker. Sometimes you get a glimpse into what they are looking for or other nuggets of info that might make you a better writer or query-ster or you can get a better idea of what is going on in the world of publishing.

Yesterday Elana Roth, Agent at Caren Johnson Literary Agency, tweeted some of her "realizations" about her thoughts as she went through her query stash. I found them interesting, so I thought you might too. I've quoted a few of them, but you can head on over to the agency blog where she compiled her entire list. Click-ity, click right here to swoosh on over to Elana's post.

A few of Elana's Query Realization "Tweets"
  • Slush Realization #1: I guess I'm just not a fan of non-human characters and narrators.
  • Slush Realization #2: I really hate e-stationery.
  • Slush Realization #3: If you hire someone to query on your behalf (don't), wouldn't you want them to have read my submission guidelines?
  • Slush Realization #4: Sometimes people make up things so strange that classifying them as "fantasy" still doesn't help me understand them.
  • Slush Realization #5: Apparently just saying "no thanks" can equal feeding the trolls. A rejection letter does not a dialogue opener make.
  • Slush Realization #9: If an email doesn't LOOK cleanly formatted, I tend to think words-on-a-page might not be your thing.
A big thanks to Elana for allowing me to quote and link her tweets!


beth said...

Thanks so much for posting this! :)

Jacqui said...

Interesting. Thanks!

Corey Schwartz said...

Thanks, Christy! I've ALWAYS wanted to be a fly on the wall of the slush pile room.

C.R. Evers said...

No prob. Beth and Jacqui.

Corey, me too! :0)

Constance Lombardo said...

Very much appreciated!

Solvang Sherrie said...

Thanks for the tweets! Now I have another person to follow :)

Angela said...

Good to know. I revealing my moronicness by admitting I didn't know there was such a thing as e-stationary?

PJ Hoover said...

Great post! I should read more of this on Twitter, though I don't!

Kelly said...

I don't know what e-stationery is either!
Interesting tweets!

Rena said...

LOL @ the e-stationary and the unformatted emails. Thanks for posting this, Christy.

Anna said...

This is very interesting, thanks for sharing! I must find Elana's Twitter now...though I do have non-human characters in my current WIP. :-D

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