Rookie error

I think I may have made a fatal rookie error in my query.

In my query, I quote an agent who read the first twenty pages of my book (an older draft, including pages I have rewritten, updated and made better)and liked the mother daughter relationship and thought my book was marketable. I use that quote in my query. The agent feedback was part of a Society of Children’s Writers and Illustrators, SCBWI, critique I paid for. The agent did not ask to read the rest of my book.

By including this quote am I shooting myself in the foot? Am I announcing to perspective agents, hey this person liked the relationship but not enough to keep the book away from you. You should pass on it too or you look like a loser who is taking on second best! 

Or am I over reacting? Please advise.

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9 thoughts on “Rookie error

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  1. I think you need to focus on the fact that this person read those pages when your book was still at an early stage which makes his/her quote even more significant as even in its raw state your book did attract his/her attention in a positive way and got a positive reaction out of him/her. The fact that s/he didn’t ask to read the whole book doesn’t necessarily mean anything and you don’t have to comment on it. After all I’m sure agents know first hand how many things are a matter of timing and unless they have a complete product submitted to them they will not track down a writer’s work unless they are already well-established, which usually means that they already have a set agent. Don’t drive yourself crazy. I’m sure you’ll do well! Fingers crossed!

  2. Hi Holly,

    I don’t think you’re shooting yourself in the foot, especially if you get to include some sample pages; if they like the writing they will overlook it (or may not care about it at all). But I would leave it out for future queries. Good luck!

  3. First of all, don’t beat yourself up. Life is a learning process. But unless your manuscript previously won an award or some special recognition, or was made to stand out in some way, leave out comments that other agents made. Now, just move forward and forget what happened in the past. But learn from it.

  4. I don’t remember where I read this, but I believe an agent posted on her blog not to include quotes about the merits of an ms unless they’re from a very famous author. I’d take it out if I were you.
    Good luck! 🙂

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