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Old 08-26-2019, 06:32 AM   #31
DDoc
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

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Originally Posted by Bono View Post
Just got a "our policy is we don't take stuff w/o referral" rejection just now, so they do reject you on the weekends for sure! Sent Friday to them.
Sometimes I think when they send this response it's not necessarily a bad thing (as opposed to not responding at all). I got one of those a couple of weeks ago so I just bullshitted and said that I actually was referred (I just mentioned a random script coverage service and provided an excerpt). They sent me an email a few days later requesting the script.

I think something to consider is if it sounds personal or automated.


This is a helpful thread though. I probably blew it with a few queries by using "query" in the subject line. Damn. I also sent some queries out on a Saturday night after work. I ended up getting a read request the following Monday on one of them.
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:26 AM   #32
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

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...This is a helpful thread though. I probably blew it with a few queries by using "query" in the subject line. Damn...
I've had "Query" as part of my standard email heading since 2010. I've received enough responses to have generated hundreds of read requests, sometimes after I've sent queries for dozens of different scripts to the same domain, ie. company.

It makes sense to have a virus checker strip out email with evil attachments, but I think that somebody somewhere somehow scans most emails that come in, by eye. Having a spam censor based on a single word in the subject line is way too dangerous a thing in an email system.

HOWEVER, hoping they're not that stupid isn't enough of a reason to deny it is occurring, so I think I may take "query" out of my subject lines. A change in tactics is always good!
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:30 AM   #33
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

It’s filtered out by 99% of people that see the word “query”. By filter or delete button. You’re getting the 1% that still respond and that’s not the people you want most. Hurting yourself.

This advice is not breaking news.
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:42 AM   #34
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

As always, keep in mind, just because something works for "you" doesn't mean it will for most people or even consistently. The vast majority of the advice I post is for the many and not the few. Maybe your logline is amazing. Maybe the people you are writing don't have spam filters set server side for "query." I'm sure there are plenty of smaller agencies, management firms and certainly production companies that don't really take the time to worry about it. They aren't inundated like a big agency, management firm or production company is.

Do what works for you. But I will say the word "query" does set off alarms. It instantly puts one in the mind set of, "Huh, oh, what did someone just send..." It's unavoidable. It's human nature. It's the biz. The word "query" isn't necessary when it all comes down to it. They will know when they look at the body text of the email you are not asking for or sharing cooking recipes. Right? Gucci asked why something might have gotten through or not, so I noted what I know and have seen.

Also, these filters don't mean the e-mail is deleted or bounced, per se. It means, in the vast majority of the cases, the e-mail is sent/moved to a JUNK folder or DELETED folder. A person or their assistant can then log into an online version of their account or depending on how all is set up click on the JUNK or DELETED folder in the e-mail program they use on their computer (Outlook, etc.) and quickly scan through the sending email addresses or names to double check, as Gucci's gal did.
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Old 08-26-2019, 07:58 AM   #35
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

Fair enough. Automatic filtering based on a word or phrase, dangerous and/or stupid. Eyeball scanning for the same words or phrases, better.

But people are always trying to cram technology into doing their work for them. Some may think it's more precise to 'whitelist' email addresses (that let's 'em get through no matter what), than to try to block on words or phrases that offend in subject lines.

Even then, today's "Joe Nobody Screenwriter", whose email you block, may be tomorrow's "Joe Somebody Screenwriter" after a big script sale or two, and you wouldn't want to miss out on an email sent from them just because you'd not whitelisted their email address.

As you say, I think even for blocked emails, somebody occasionally must go through and scan things by-eye. I was invited to send a script once, and when I followed up (as requested) six weeks later, was told "Your email containing the script was picked up by our spam filter - we have rectified now, and the script is being read as a priority." The email that included the files had the original subject (with "re: ") on it, so were they filtering out by attachment type/name or something? It makes no sense, and is a fool's game to try.

It's why more and more I'm coming across 'submission' pages, even if they're not publicly available and are offered only after a query is responded to. These pages collect all the info and let you upload the file.

Plain email can barely be trusted any more.
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Old 08-26-2019, 08:54 AM   #36
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

You are over thinking it. So in case new people are reading this -- let's make it clear:

Simple - DON'T USE THE WORD "QUERY" in emails you send. Not even to friends! In fact, we should should all just say "pitch" from now on. But they may block that word too, so don't include that word in your pitch to reps either...

------

Subject Line: BALL SACK --- COMEDY

Please consider reading my comedy spec, BALL SACK.

LOGLINE FOR SCRIPT GOES HERE IN BOLD. BLACK.

Thank you for your time.

Best,
Writer X


It's really all about the logline. But if you use the wrong word they won't get that far because some IT tech sent it to spam or they did or they hit DELETE button because they know for sure it's a PITCH and 99% of the ones with "query" in it are for new writers and they know it's probably bad.

Also, I just updated my EMAIL I sent my PITCHES out with because I'm like my old address is too cutesy and I should use a more professional one.

Also I like the idea of keeping all my screenplay stuff in one email box. Also maybe my old email did get blocked for all those years of bad queries, so mix it up. Something to keep in mind.

(I got repped more than once doing it this way from reps you've heard of. Got read by producers. And also got referrals too along the way and still do from writer friends and other friends... but it all started with PITCHES i sent out years ago... and if you're only getting responses from bottom feeders you can't reach your dream. So I'm not just talking game theory. I'm playing the actual game and winning. Sometimes.)
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Old 08-26-2019, 09:24 AM   #37
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

What seems to work for me -- Wednesdays, after their lunch. 2:00-3:00. They're just getting back, they've eaten, less irritable. Wednesdays at 3:00 are when most people at work get online as well (email, social media, etc..).
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Old 08-26-2019, 09:44 AM   #38
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

Most threads on this board prove people over-worry about and 'overthink' things.

If there were a $9.99 bottle of magic tonic that claimed to do the trick, I'm sure it'd sell gazillions. I always say, I'm kind of lucky that I'm too poor to take them up on any of these schemes.

Try anything and everything, but don't become addicted to any one tactic.

The only restriction - as a result of common sense and common decency - would be to avoid doing something that would annoy you yourself, if you were on the receiving end.

Thus, avoid showing up at somebody's door with an unsolicited script and a pizza - though I think I read where that worked for somebody, too.
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Old 08-26-2019, 10:15 AM   #39
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

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Originally Posted by Done Deal Pro View Post
A person or their assistant can then log into an online version of their account or depending on how all is set up click on the JUNK or DELETED folder in the e-mail program they use on their computer (Outlook, etc.) and quickly scan through the sending email addresses or names to double check, as Gucci's gal did.
Just to be clear. She never went through her SPAM, which is where most of the queries ended up.

I was referring to her deleting the queries that DID make it to her email inbox. Some did. And she would delete them ALL without opening them. Out of all the agents I knew NONE of them read queries. But these were mid to upper level agents at a big4. So...

There's always the anomaly person saying "Well, I got a read request from them... so?" Cool! But it definitely wasn't from my ex. 15 years as an agent there, read ZERO queries. Those are some of the odds you're up against.

I'd say try anyway. Why not.

My best guess would be that doing something like mentioning a project they sold in the header would get them to open the email, and probably wouldn't go to SPAM. Then if you could quickly mention how your project is in that vein, maybe they'd continue reading the email to learn what your project is. Or they probably just delete it (people at that level) because they don't want to deal with the release forms and sh!t (because they don't NEED to). I'm dead serious, my ex could have been tricked into opening an email but wouldn't take a look at something even if it sounded interesting because she wouldn't have wanted to do the back and forth with releases, she honestly had probably never seen what a release looks like. And it sounds like MORE WORK. Easier to just delete it and wait for someone REAL to refer it.

That's what you're up against with the bigs. So, when you DO get a read request... Dude, pat yourself on the back!
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Old 08-26-2019, 10:28 AM   #40
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Default Re: Do people query on weekends?

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Originally Posted by catcon View Post
Most threads on this board prove people over-worry about and 'overthink' things.

If there were a $9.99 bottle of magic tonic that claimed to do the trick, I'm sure it'd sell gazillions. I always say, I'm kind of lucky that I'm too poor to take them up on any of these schemes.

Try anything and everything, but don't become addicted to any one tactic.

The only restriction - as a result of common sense and common decency - would be to avoid doing something that would annoy you yourself, if you were on the receiving end.

Thus, avoid showing up at somebody's door with an unsolicited script and a pizza - though I think I read where that worked for somebody, too.

AND DON'T BE FUKKIN STUPID!

Example: The 1 (ONE!) time my ex considered reading an unsolicited script was when (and I've already told this story) a girl a DWR furniture store somehow realized she was an agent at ____. The girl asked if she's read her script. She was caught off guard "Uhh... I guess." The girl then says "Here's my card, get in touch with me." Dude... WHAT?????? No! You ask for her card and make it EASY for her to read you, idiot!

As we left ex said "Do, you think I should contact her to read her script? I said I'd read it." I'm like "FUKK NO! That chick blew it, she needs to learn the lesson that it's fukking HARD to get a read in this town so don't fukk it up. Besides, she didn't offer an employee discount on the $1000 lamp." Ex was like "True..." And that was that.

This chick was way too casual about getting a read. I didn't sense any gratitude. So fukk that...

IF... the writer had seemed smart and sincere I would have pushed her to read it. But a smart writer would have asked for HER card/email. So....??

(If ex is reading this. That's a 100% true story isn't it... HA!)
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