Many authors send out their queries and sit to chew their nails. I get that. Done it myself on more than one occasion. “When can I send out a nagmail to the agent/editor?” is the all-consuming question.
Three months. 90 days. That’s the normal waiting period.
Yes, I can hear the screams and groans from here. But there’s a simple reason for this; we’re all inundated. Yours is not the only query/submission we’ve received. We have cyber stacks of them – all awaiting our attention. When you add this to the other jobs that editors and agents perform on a daily basis, then it’s easy to see why it easily takes 90 days (or…gulp…longer) to get through the stack.
And it’s not a matter of simply glossing over them, either. Some queries are easy to figure out that they aren’t right for us…and those can be taken care of quickly. But I have to actually read them first in order to make that determination.
The rest fall into two categories: I Might Be Interested and Totally Interested
Whichever category a query falls into, I take the time to research the subject matter, the author, and the marketing possibilities.When I compound this with the responsibilities I have to my authors, my days/weeks are filled.
So if you’re chewing your nails wondering if/when you’ll hear from those you queried, please remember that our days are stuffed. Instead of watching the clock, start working on your author platform – or improving it. Talk to professionals in your subject matter. Go after blurbs. There are many things you can do to fill the time that will enhance yourself. And these are things an agent or editor of nonfiction will ask for anyway. You become a much more attractive target if you can show how much you’ve done.
So please…give us 90 days. Then send your nagmail. Any sooner, and it makes my teeth itch.