Sunday, January 15, 2012

Agents: Research, Reality & a Bit of Remorse

How I think other people get agents:
  1. They research them by perusing reputable websites, asking their agented friends, and stalking them at conferences across the nation--perhaps timing their elevator rides just so in order to have that very special conversation.
  2. They then write a perfectly worded email which includes impressive bits from their research, a referral from a friend or a reminder of the invitation the agent extended when they were pitched during an elevator ride. This continues for about ten to twenty rounds because no one gets an agent on their first try.
  3. Finally an agent is enamored of their work, gets back to them in three hours, they sign a contract, they sell books, have get togethers in New York and name their cats after one another.
How I got an agent:
  1. I had the distinct and alarming impression that I had better get an agent. 
  2. I thought of the only agent I'd ever had contact with. She represented the illustrator of my first book.
  3. I looked her up online, figured out how to submit and followed instructions.
  4. She got back to me when I nudged her several weeks later with positive comments.
  5. I waited a few more weeks and emailed something intelligent like, "So...are you my agent then?"
  6. She said yes and sent a contract. Whew.
  7. I had guilt because it wasn't supposed to be so easy.
How I lost an agent:

Also easy.
  1. I didn't write any more books.
  2. She didn't sell any more books.
I think one or the other may have saved us but sadly, neither happened.

In a couple of years I will be sure and post: "How I Got Another Agent."

For now, I'd better get writing some books.


  1. I enjoyed this post on how you got an agent. Maybe if it's too easy it's not worth it? I'm curious to know how you got your next agent and how that's working out.

  2. I love your book, Ginger. Wild Rose Weaving is WWWonderful. I hope you write many more books, agent or no agent.

  3. "I didn't write any more books"

    This is such a simple statement, but so powerful.

    And I'll ditto the Wild Rose comment. I love the story!

  4. Yes, getting an agent is more of a new beginning than an arrival, isn't it? There's still so much more than has to happen and that can go wrong. I hope you and your next agent can name your cats after each other. :)

  5. If it's any consolation, I still can't get an agent. I've now been rejected by an agent who contacted me! The agenting world makes no sense to me.