Pub Rants

Category: holidays

Holiday Slow Down?

STATUS: It was kind of chilly here in Denver today. I know it’s November but I want to hold on to our lovely and mild fall for as long as possible.

What’s playing on the iPod right now? O HOLY NIGHT by Paul Potts (I know, it’s a bit early for holiday songs but it’s on the CD.)

I imagine writers wonder if agents have a drop-dead date for submissions around the holiday season—as in we won’t submit after a certain day in December.

The answer is that it depends on the agent. Some won’t submit after the first week of the month. Some won’t after the second week. Some agents continue to submit. If the editor doesn’t read before the holiday, chances are good he or she will read soon thereafter. One agent told me that she once got a pre-empt for a project on Dec. 23rd. That means anything can happen!

As for me, all I know is that my agency always closes for 2 weeks in the month of December. We need a break with no queries, no sample pages, no nothing. It really helps to rejuvenate us for the next year.

So in that sense, my drop-dead date is December 19th.

A Heads Up For The Holidays

STATUS: TGIF! I might actually take the evening off (as opposed to all my other nights this week where I’ve worked until 10 p.m.). Unfortunately, I’ll need to work through the weekend. All for a good cause though. Time off for good behavior starting on Dec. 15.

What’s playing on the iPod right now? ONE WEEK by Barenaked Ladies

Yep, you read that correctly. Nelson Literary Agency is shutting down on Dec. 15th and won’t reopen until Jan. 2, 2007. Just wanted to give you folks a week’s heads up.

I did this last year and I have to say it was a real sanity booster to just take the time off. No queries, not sample pages, no blogging, no nothing.

Just time to read for pleasure. I can hardly wait. (Actually that’s not completely true because I may still have to deal with a couple of client-related issues the following week but for the outside world, we won’t be around.)

Rest assured, I do plan to read the three full manuscripts I’ve requested. I have every intention of following up with all queries letters sent to me up to Dec. 14. I also plan to respond to all sample pages mailed to us before we leave for the holidays and when we reopen on Jan. 2, it’s all electronic, baby.

Aren’t I afraid of missing out on the next big thing by not accepting or reading queries during the holidays?


If I missed something good, oh well. Another great project that’s right for me will be just around the corner in 2007.

Happy Eggnog chugging!

The Dead Zone

STATUS: TGIF! Tonight I’m volunteering for the Denver Parade of Lights. My hubby and I did this last year and it was a blast. We held and manipulated the enormous Rudolph the Reindeer balloon. This year we have the Parade Mascot—a Penguin. Happy feet!

What’s playing on the iPod right now? LUSH LIFE by Natalie Cole

We are heading into the holiday dead zone of publishing. Sounds like it should be some cheesy horror film, doesn’t it?

I and almost every agent friend I have are completely slammed right now. Why? Because most of us won’t submit projects after the first week in December so it’s next week or bust (we wait until 2007).

Man, it’s weird writing that. I can’t believe it’s 2007 already.

But here’s the reason why we don’t submit much after the first week in December. A lot of editors take extra holiday time around this time of year because publishing slows down. So a lot of key decision makers tend to leave the office early and if you have a project generating excitement… editors have to confer with those key people.

It’s just too frustrating so we wait until the calendar turns to the new year.

Unless you get it out my next week that is… hence the mad scramble.