Do Literary Agents Work on Weekends?

Do literary agents work on weekends? If so, is this a better time to submit my query or manuscript? Does it matter what time of day? Find the answers here.
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Do literary agents work on weekends? If so, is this a better time to submit my query or manuscript? Does it matter what time of day? Find the answers here.

One standard piece of advice for sales is for the seller to know their customer. It's actually great advice. But there are some who take it a little too far. For instance, whoever pays attention to all my random searches and then tries to sell me things based off those random searches.

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(20 literary agents actively looking for writers.)

Since writers are essentially trying to sell their books to agents and editors in the submission process, it makes sense for them to want to learn everything they can about their customers. Sometimes that involves reading their individual submission guidelines. Other times, it could mean following the agents on Twitter or Instagram.

In this post, we're going to look at whether literary agents work on weekends and if that should impact your submission strategy.

During this March 2020 boot camp, literary agents will show you how to put together the best query letter, opening pages, and synopsis to hook the attention of Agents and Editors. As you learn what makes up an amazing submission package, 4 literary agents from Corvisiero Literary will tell you what agents look for when reviewing your work. They will help you draft and perfect your query letter, your book synopsis, and the first five pages of your book.

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Click to continue.

Do Literary Agents Work on Weekends?

The answer to this question is going to vary from agent to agent. But my experience—after more than 20 years in publishing—is that most people in publishing work on weekends. This includes literary agents, editors, and writers.

(Why do literary agents take so long to respond to submissions?)

Does that mean an agent is combing through submissions on the weekend? Maybe. But an agent may also be reading a manuscript submitted by a client or potential client. Or speaking at a conference and listening to pitches in person.

Or simply reading new books that they may decide to use as comps when pitching books on behalf of their authors. That's the thing about working in publishing; there's always so much potential "work" to be done—and that includes a lot of reading.

Should I Submit My Writing on Weekends?

Honestly, you should submit your writing when it makes the most sense in your schedule. If that's the weekend, go for it. If it's seven minutes before midnight on Tuesday, that works too. The great thing about email and online submissions is that it's always open, and agents will get to your submission when they get to it.

So, no. Submitting on the weekends won't give you any extra advantage—just as submitting at 9:03 a.m. on Monday doesn't mean anything. I've found that agents and editors with quick turnaround times do so regardless, and that agents and editors with slow response times always mean to turn things around quicker—but often, don't.

(How to write a successful query letter—with 39 queries that worked.)

The more important thing to focus on than whether agents work on weekends or the right time of day/week to submit is whether you've put together an incredible manuscript and/or query letter. The rest will take care of itself.