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Today’s post is brought to you by Aaliyah, and literary agent Nathan Bransford, who asked (and answered): “Can you query if you are an unpublished novelist and your manuscript isn’t finished yet?”
The “correct” answer is of course, no. But I can’t help wondering if the answer for somebody who is very confident, very talented, and very focused, is actually yes.
Because in theory, That Somebody could submit a good query with just an idea. And if a partial were requested from the query, That Somebody could then write the first 30 pages and submit. And if a full were requested from the partial, That Somebody could then write the rest of the manuscript and submit.
It would be rough as heck, but doable.
Then regardless of what happens, That Somebody hasn’t wasted time on an idea and/or manuscript that nobody’s interested in, because That Somebody didn’t write it until an agent was interested. And even if things don’t work out with that agent, it’s likely that another agent will be interested too, so That Somebody can keep querying (and revising in the meantime) until That Somebody gets a contract.
Of all the wannabe writers out there, probably only one in a million could do this successfully, but hey, think of all the time That Somebody could save!