If you've never visited Cupid's Literary Connection and you are a writer, get thee hence now! Go visit the sight of the mighty Cupid, who works hard anonymously to connect writers and agents.
Tomorrow, Monday Feb 24th, begins a four-day round of Blind Speed Dating, in which agents (under fake names) make requests for partials and full manuscripts from presented queries and first 250 words who have made it into this round through a previous round of judges called the Bouncer Round. The rules for Blind Speed Dating are sort of complicated and fun--the agents have a limited number of arrows to "shoot" at writers to make their requests--, so I'll let you go read them, but the really great thing about an event like this is you can really get an idea of what agents are looking for.
Take some time and read the queries that are getting the arrows (ie- the requests.) What makes them stand out? What's great about their 250 words? If you could only choose five queries, which would they be? Did those five get any requests? Of course, the ten agents participating might have totally different tastes or interests than you do, so not matching up doesn't mean you have zero taste. But I found that even in the Bouncer Round, I learned something from every entry. And yes, I entered the Bouncer Round, and I'm in this round. Yay! But there's seriously tough competition. Many great queries, many great strories.
You can follow along at Twitter using the hashtag #CLCBSD and you can
follow the agent's trash talk at #AgentTTT, which promises to be
Good luck to everyone over at Cupid's Literary Connection and have fun during Blind Speed Dating week!