Sunday, August 31, 2008

An apology to some of you who sent queries in March and late June:

As many of you may know, I use Gmail to collect my agency email. This has worked most of the time. Gmail has great functionality and a lot of customizable filter options. But it does have a few weird quirks and last week I discovered a new one. Apparently, for some unknown reason, Gmail will occasionally store unread mail in an invisible folder. The mail exists and it isn't in the spam folder, but you still can't see it. However, if you do a search under "show search options" and ask Gmail to show only unread mail, it will bring up this hidden mail. You can then move it into your inbox to read it.

So on a whim I tried this last Monday...and was horrified to discover nearly 150 unread queries, most of them from a specific two week period in late June/early July and the rest from the last week of March.

Ahem.

YIKES!

I am so sorry! I've been responding to these queries as fast as I can (mostly with a big fat apology email) and will get through the rest of them by the end of the weekend. But please feel free to re-query me if you want; I know that some of you may have changed your query by now or revised the first few pages. Now's your chance to re-send; no harm, no foul.

Anyway, just wanted to let y'all know what was going on. Ducking my head back down in embarrassment now to finish catching up on queries and older partials. (And yes, now I run that special Gmail search at the end of every day, thank you very much!)

12 comments:

annathepiper said...

A-ha! Thanks for updating us.

Christopher M. Park said...

Don't worry too much -- these things happen! You requested my partial in late March, and I think my submission of it must have fallen into that invisible folder. At any rate, I re-sent it to you tonight, but I'm also posting here just in case...

Christopher M. Park said...

Oh, by the way -- as a fellow Gmail users (both at work and at home), I have a suggestion for how you might resolve your invisible-mail issue. If you are using filters and have "Skip the Inbox" set, then your mail will not appear in the inbox, but will still be in the "All Mail" listing.

One solution to that is to also have that sort of filter flag the mail with a Label, so that you can see the count next to the label (even though it still wouldn't show in the inbox proper). Maybe the issue is something else, but I've run into this, so thought I would share.

H. L. Dyer said...

Ah! That must be where those gremlins hid my first query to you. :)

Loquacious Me said...

By any chance, were there any missing partials lurking in that invisible folder?

Scott said...

Thanks for the update. I'm operating on the - potentially mistaken - assumption that my query sent toward the end of July became a victim of technology. What I want to know is, what programmer thought an "invisible" folder was a clever idea?

Thanks also for the opportunity to resend the query with "no harm, no foul".

Marva said...

Ah, I checked my Gmail and found a bunch in that hidden folder, too. I send all my queries with two reply-tos, so there wasn't anything there I hadn't received to my other email addy. Whew! But nothing from Ms. Lindsay, so maybe I should resend my 8/4 query.

Calenhíril said...

This might make things a little easier:

In the Google Labs section (the little green flask shape on the upper right of the GMail page), there is an option to add a "Quicklinks" box to the sidebar, and you can use it to quickly see frequent searches. Add Quicklinks, do a search for your unread mail (you can just put "is:unread" into the the search bar), and then click on "add new link" from the quicklinks sidebar. It will ask you to name the current view, and voila! Now you only need to click on one link to get all your unread mail.

SLF said...

Some agents state query response times of two months or more. Some give no response times at all. So for my part you merit the "super nice agent" distinction for being so concerned about those of us who got a little lost in the shuffle.

Aimless Writer said...

Thanks for the tip! Gotta go check that gmail account now....

Aimless Writer said...

Oooo, by the way. I've had agents reply to my Query as long as a year later. Some I actually forgot I had sent.
It happens. I think the fact that you're upset about it shows you're a good agent and a nice person.
:)

numdlmom said...

Colleen, I have a question about your "no harm, no foul" comment. If you send an agent a requested partial, but then in the meantime, you've done a major rewrite of the novel and believe that the new manuscript is much better, do you reply to a "no, thank you" email from that agent and explain that?

I know most agents do not want replies to their "not for me" emails, but is there ever an exception to the rule?