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Old 07-12-2018, 09:13 AM   #1
MargoChanning
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Default Querying In The Summer Months

Good morning guys,

Do you think it's a waste of time what with vacations/traveling, etc.?

Thanks.
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Old 07-12-2018, 12:06 PM   #2
Bunker
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

I wouldn't overthink it. Querying is such a crap shoot that it's impossible to accurately time it.

Sure, some of your emails will vanish into the ether because people are out of town. But you never know. They may also reach some bored assistant who's stuck manning the lighthouse while the bosses are away.

Back when I used to query, I once had a manager shoot me an email on Thanksgiving weekend. He was bored and just happened to read my script then.
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Old 07-12-2018, 12:44 PM   #3
nativeson
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Go for it. I got 4 requests in the last month.
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Old 07-12-2018, 01:53 PM   #4
MargoChanning
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Thanks, guys. Appreciate.

Much luck.
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Old 07-12-2018, 06:35 PM   #5
Lahlowen
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Go for it. Because it's always going to be something. Winter... Holidays. Summer...vacations. Spring...festivals.

Sometimes it feels like most of Hollywood only actually works in the Fall, but that's only because they're rushing to wrap up before Thanksgiving, lol.
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Old 08-03-2018, 01:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

One of my quickest responses ever, today, for a read request: 12 minutes from pitch to the pithy "Please send" response. This, after I'd sent this producer 14 pitches over the past 24 months, at various times of the year, with never a sign of acknowledgement or interest on my stuff.

So, you just can't predict in this biz.

In other words: Don't hold back, and don't write them off just because you haven't heard.
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Old 08-20-2018, 11:04 AM   #7
catcon
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Here's an addendum to my last post, about "not holding back"

On Friday I sent out about 25 pitches on an older script that I'd just polished and shortened. Five minutes after sending one of the emails, I got a request from a partner at a significant firm with an association to a big franchise.



I'll tell you, in this game you have to be creative, and a bit scientific, and especially you have to be persistent:

The scientific: This company had received the script pitch before, but my "angle" on this particular day was that the script was polished (and shorter), that the previous pitch was a while ago (the script was from 2015, so most of the pitches went out at that time), and that it had been sent to a creative contact at the company initially who's no longer there (based on various sources and research). I even included the header info from the original pitch, at the bottom of the email, so that the current recipient would know that I wasn't bluffing.

See all the things to consider in any one darn pitch!? Anyway...

The persistent: I pitch anybody whose emails I can find, until they respond to me "No unsolicited" or there's a comparable statement on their website. In checking my email, I see that I'd pitched this particular company over EIGHTY (that's 8 + a zero) times since 2010. Well, I have a lot of material, and with staff turnover and major revisions (even one title change), I see no reason for not re-approaching these guys, once all the usual diplomatic niceties (eg. does the company do my sort of genre, etc. etc.) are fulfilled.

But a read request after over 80 emails?

Well, that certainly breaks my old record, which was about 34 over several years, before I got a hit. But I've also had responses after 20 pitches, 12, etc. You have to persist!

Remember: One is all it takes, and (as per the OP) it doesn't matter what time of year it is.

PS. I fully assume the "partner" who requested my script has handed it off to a reader, but that's still a positive step.
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Old 08-20-2018, 12:20 PM   #8
socalwriter1
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Catcon, I agree totally; the turnover is amazing in the industry.

When you re-query a firm (agent/managers or studios/producers?), do you mention that this is a polish that you sent them years ago? I'm also assuming that you used the same title so that by polishing and shortening, that were enough changes to change a "no" years ago to a "yes" now?

Love to hear success stories like yours that persistence pays off. Congrats.
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Old 08-21-2018, 06:23 AM   #9
catcon
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Default Re: Querying In The Summer Months

Requerying 101:

Quote:
Originally Posted by socalwriter1 View Post
...When you re-query a firm (agent/managers or studios/producers?), do you mention that this is a polish that you sent them years ago?
Sorry, yes, I wasn't clear about that. Each of these requeries had a 2-line para right at the top, such as:

Quote:
Hi, I pitched this to xxxxxxxxx three years ago at 115 pages (see below), but it has been polished and is still one of the best stories I've ever written:

Title: Panic in the Street (109 pages; 4-page synopsis)

etc. (rest of current query)
etc.
etc.
etc. (all the way down to...)
-----Original Message-----
From: (me)
Sent: Tuesday, April 07, 2015 5:26 PM
To: (exact email address)
Subject: ** Screenplay Logline Query: "Panic in the Street"

Title: Panic in the Street (115 pages; 4-page synopsis)
The "best stories I've ever written" doesn't go in every requery blitz that I do. In my opinion, this particular script happens to be one of my top 2-3, that's all.

The email subject had "Re: " in the heading, telling the recipient that this was some sort of a follow-up.

Further to that, over the years I've had a number of "Have we discussed this script before?" type of responses to cold pitches. Clearly, these busy folks think we'd had a phone call or my agent-that-I-don't-have had contacted them about it, etc. This convinces me that they scan everything that reaches them by email. They have to: The foregoing proves that if they depended blindly on email spammers they'd risk zapping potential proper communications.

On the one hand, and not that we should abuse this, but it's one tiny advantage we still have.

On the other hand, it's probably one reason for the growth in the on-line script and pitch resources (VPF, InkTip, Blacklist, et al) because there they can control the incoming clutter. I do pity these folks, but jeez, for broke/over-the-hill/out-of-town writers such as myself, we need some sort of break!
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