I began querying agents with my novel in the way most articles recommend: by sending it in batches. It’s my first stab at querying agents, so it’s been a great learning process and very humbling.
The first batch of agents didn’t request additional information; however, I got some great feedback from two of them. Two agents told me that they were intrigued by my concept and idea, but the first chapter didn’t hold them as well as they’d hoped it would. While a rejection, it’s a great positive. I am very grateful that they gave me this bit of feedback to know where to look when making revisions.
Receiving these two bits of feedback amidst the other standard rejection forms or the non-responses of those agents who only respond if interested in a certain amount of time was like gold. Of course, I don’t have any negative feelings about the standard rejections or timed out silences. I appreciate that agents receive an incredible number of queries each day. But I am so thankful to the two who were intrigued enough and who took the time to send me a personal note.
The personal note with indication as to why the agent was requesting more pages buoyed my spirit.
I took my cause to Facebook. And I am incredibly grateful to all of the wonderful friends and family on my Facebook page who jumped onto reviewing my first chapter for me. I asked for them to be honest about where they felt bored or disinterested in the story without holding back. Everyone put such effort into this and into considering the chapter, and I am beyond touched. The support has been incredible.
I have gone through the suggestions and have identified the common themes and jumped on board to a number of comments that weren’t so common but seemed on the mark. I’m now excited to begin implementing the changes.
One thing about opening it up to such a large group of reviewers (46 people jumped on board) is that I was able to see how many people had the same issue with the chapter. What a great way to find out how to appeal to the masses.
Revised chapter one is under way, and I am thrilled.