Unless you are planning to self-publish you will need to query at one point or another. I have yet to meet a writer who enjoys this process but it will (hopefully) pay off in the end. I say hopefully because I am still looking for an agent, but you have to stay optimistic.
That’s easier said than done of course. Last year I got so frustrated with my experience that I shut down my blog for a while and stopped querying altogether. I’d had some success with partial (and even a full) requests, but nothing turned into an offer. It was time to walk away and take a breath.
Sometimes that’s what you need to do. Sometimes you just need to take a step back and relax, focus on other things. I was in a bit of a funk but then I started beta reading projects for two of my friends. It was nice to get away from my own projects as well as the ups and downs of querying, but still be involved in the creative process. I really loved reading the projects and commenting on them. It helped clear my mind while helping out other writers make their novels the best they can be.
Now I feel as though I am a bit refreshed and I took another look at my query, as well as the novel, after some time off. I feel that this really helped me improve both, the query in particular.
I’ve started another round of querying now and hope for good results.
As you can tell, I’ve also reopened my website and this blog. I’ve also decided to include more personalization in this round of querying. Rather than just writing “Dear Agent,” (Do use the agents real name here!) “I’m querying you with my project…” I try to include some information about WHY I’m querying this particular agent with my project. It may be because they like cross-genre fiction, or because they like to see a male protagonist in a women’s fiction style setting, and so forth. Either way, I’m trying this approach now, rather than the generic ones I previously employed. I’ll report back on the success of this once there’s something to report.
So, I feel that the best thing I could do for myself and my project was step away and then start over with new energy, and new ideas.