Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Livin', Lovin', She's Just An Agent...

It occurred to me, as I was thinking about the things I dislike about the agent search, that there must be something I like about it. Hate is the flip side of love, right? To achieve karmic balance in the universe, something must be enjoyable in this quest.

First, a quick reminder of what I hate/dislike/am frustrated about (as if you need one): waiting for a response (patience is a virtue I apparently do not have); agents who don't respond at all; not knowing if your rejected query was seen by an actual agent or only a 19-year-old intern; not knowing, if you've sent along a chapter or two or three with your query, whether the agent/intern looked at the writing before rejecting you; having one's publishing hopes attached to the very narrow thread of a single query letter. I'm sure I could go on and on.

That's the easy part. Now, what do I like about this process? Feedback, certainly -- I only got it once, but it was helpful, and nice to know there was an actual human on the other end. I've learned an awful lot about how publishing works ("works," is perhaps more accurate) in a short space of time. I've enjoyed reading agent blogs, even the snarkiest of them, and am grateful for their advice. Feeling that I'm part of a community of writers trying to get published. The grueling nature of the process has forced me to focus harder on my query letter and which agents to target (I can't say I've enjoyed that, but it has been useful).

So, what about you? Got anything good to say for this crazy system of snaring an agent?


  1. It has thickened my skin & I'm proud of that. When I started out, I pouted after I got my first rejection. "How could they not love it?" I asked. "I love it!"

    Now, I toss rejections aside and drink a beer.

  2. I like the community of writers I’ve gotten to “know” either on AW or through blogs. Maybe it’s just that misery loves company. I don’t know. Oooh, I know - I’ll like and that’s when my book gets published.:) Haha! I am also apparently impatient and that’s the wrong way to be when going through this process. Mainly, I love, love, love the writing. That’s it for me, 100%.

  3. I agree with Travener. I love it when I get helpful feedback. Most of the time I get form rejections, but there are the exceptions. Just today I got this one from Mindstir Media...

    Hi Dawn,

    Thank you for sharing the excerpt. I'm sorry but I'm going to have to pass on this project.

    Don't get me wrong... Your writing is strong, but after reading the provided chapters I realized your story doesn't align with my vision for Mindstir.

    Best of luck. I'm sure you'll get this into print if you persevere.


  4. I have not yet braved that new world.

    Hee hee! That word I had to type to prove that I was a real human was hando. Is that Spanish for hand?

  5. I think "hando" might be Spanglish, as in, "Oye, amigo, give me a hando."

  6. I love the Led Zeppelin reference.

    Buuut the only thing I like is feedback in those very rare instances. Everything else sucks.

  7. They say, "No. Don't. Stop."

    You hear, "No, don't stop!"

    It's going to happen, Trav. Patience is a virtue. And when I start to tread in the waters along with you, I'll try to remember to heed my own advice.

  8. I like the time suck. The brain space it takes up. I don't remember when I wasn't waiting, checking, wishing, thinking, researching. What the F did I do BQ? (Before Querying?)

    Right now I'm in the enviable position of having ONE full ms(My second Novel) out with ONE agent who requested IT. (She read my first one and passed but asked for my second) And I am ITCHING to query it. SO... Shhhhhhh.... don't tell anyone.... I sent a query out to an agent who I knew would reject it FAST just so I could send it and get the fast rejection. Ummmm.... it came via email less than twenty four hours after I sent it.... and I felt this huge... AHHHHHHHH.

    Kind of like cutting myself or something. Anyway, that's my take. The Query is CRACK for the aspiring writers soul.

  9. Querying = writer's crack. I like it, Suzyhayze!