Ok, so let's just say, hypothetically that someone, let's call her Lisel, was sitting around one night and after she finished watching the Hills she decided to take in a little 90210 only to find that it was a repeat. Inevitably, she started to get a little bored. She refreshed her hotmail for the 80,000th time. Checked her cell phone to make sure she hadn't missed "the call" from an agent. And finally, she decided to look over the query spreadsheet to gaze longingly at the list of agents waiting to be queried.
Now, just to provide a little background here, Lisel had a very specific conversation with her sister, let's call her Laurel, earlier that evening about not sending out any new queries before their big Vegas trip this weekend. I mean, really, what's the point of querying if you're not going to be around to refresh your e-mail every 2 minutes.
Ahh, but there was one name on that list that called to Lisel like a siren's song. Their website looked so promising. The agents/editors sounded so fun. Lisel just knew that they would love the book, yet one essential piece was missing. No submissions policy. Hmm...this was unheard of. Usually, submissions policies are prominently featured on agency websites, but this place is new and has a different (and very cool) business model for marketing and publishing books, so Lisel did the unthinkable. She picked up the phone.
Now, those of you who have never attempted to find an agent before might not realize this, but calling agents is strictly verboten. Agents are busy. Agents don't have time to hear from lowly aspiring authors. Agents are gods that control the fate of your sorry ass book, and you really, really don't want to piss them off. Anyways, Lisel, under the mistaken assumption that no one would ever answer the phone at 11:11 PM, called their offices hoping for a message that would provide clues regarding their submissions policy.
So, Lisel's itchy little fingers dialed the number to the office and the phone rang once, twice and then "Hello?" Oh shit. Shit. Shit. Shit. Lisel realized that this was not good. Not only was she caught violating the golden rule of agent querying, but she was also violating said rule at 11:11 PM on a Tuesday night. She quickly ran through her options. She could hang up. She could lie and say she had the wrong number. Or she could just ask about the stupid submissions policy. So little Lisel did what came naturally and apolgetically asked about the submissions policy, and while the agent/editor didn't exactly hang up on her, she did sound slightly frazzled by the totally random call. Fabulous first impression, Lisel. Just fab.
Now some people might decide to call it a night after such an eventful evening, but Lisel isn't some people. Now that she's broken the rules she figures she might as well really piss Laurel off and send the damn query. I mean, it certainly couldn't hurt, right? Who knows, this agency might actually enjoy crazy, stalker-like phone calls from prospective clients at 11:11 PM on a Tuesday night, right? RIGHT?
Well, anyways, I'm sure we'll all be hearing about Laura, I mean, Laurel's reaction to this debacle tomorrow. Let's just hope she hasn't saved the pictures from Sophomore year homecoming. Ouch.