Finding an agent or editor to look at your novel and getting it published is a long and tedious job. It took years for me to find my publisher, and I endured quite a few rejections. While the rejections make us stronger, they always hurt and you never really get used to them. But alas, as with most things in life, there are many roads that can lead to getting an agent or publisher.
I think that the traditional tried and true method of sending out query letters is fine, but it is frustrating and no fun at all (for me at least). I like query contests much better. With the contests, usually you get more feedback and it seems that the chances of getting your manuscript reviewed are much greater. I found my publisher, MuseItUp Publishing, via such a contest on a website called Unicorn Bell. http://unicornbell.blogspot.com/
Back in the fall of 2012, Unicorn Bell had a query school/competition in which I submitted my query letter. They critiqued and helped me refine it. Then the queries were judged by editors from different publishers. Three of the publishers asked to see my work and voila, I had a publisher. Thank you Unicorn Bell, I am forever indebted to you guys.
So … if you’re getting frustrated with the traditional querying process, give these types of contests a try. I think you will have a lot more fun with them.