Just for the hell of it, today, try writing a letter to an agent that distills the essence of your novel into 250 words or so, and that you think would hook the agent into wanting to read more. What happened to all your characters, your carefully thought-out plot, and interesting back-stories? If they are all still intact, you have accomplished something truly remarkable. Then be sure you pigeonhole your work into one of the arcane and arbitrarily-established "genres" created by the publishing industry. Having fun yet?
I must have written at least fifty different queries for SAVAGE MOUNTAIN, most of them lousy. Unfortunately, I was too eager to go from writer to published author, and made the egregious error of submitting a large number of these to some of the top literary agents, netting, as I said above, a collection of form rejections. Both I and my novel will suffer as a result, as literary agents do not seem to be fond of reading queries for the same book more than once. I have heard that some will, if enough time has elapsed between queries, but I have not yet had the courage to try.
On the positive side, during the past six months, while I was revising my queries (with much help from the folks on the forums at www.absolutewrite.com and www.querytracker.net), I found that many of the problems I was having with them related to problems within the novel itself. I found that as I tried to improve the queries, I also had to rewrite parts of the novel, and what do you know? The novel got better -- tighter, leaner, and with a more concise plotline. The whole experience made me wonder if, when first contemplating writing another novel, I should write the query first and make the story conform to it. This is obvious oversimplification and I don't think it would really work, but you can get the idea. If your query seems to be wanting, look to your story.