Thursday, April 27, 2006

To Agent or Not to Agent... -- Jay

…that is the question I am so sick and tired of thinking about. Should I submit on my own, or through an agent? Do I need an agent? Do I even want an agent? What are the pros? What are the cons? Sometimes I feel like a contestant on Survivor: Slushpile Island.

I’d like an agent for three main reasons:
- they have a better idea of who’s looking for what
- they can negotiate a better contract
- it’s just nice to have someone in your corner

But I’m hesitant for just as many reasons:
- I’ve experienced agents losing steam after only a couple rejections
- if I love a manuscript, but my agent doesn’t, it’s not going anywhere
- so far, I’ve had success getting read by “closed houses” without one

So when I decide on whether or not to seek an agent, the drama ends there, right? HA! The confusion then shifts to which one. But I’ve already narrowed my choices down to three. Two are agents I’ve had my eye on for some time, and I’ve spoken with authors they represent to help with the decision. Or, I could go back to an agent I used to work with who told me the door was always open.

The decision To Agent or Not to Agent would be a whole lot easier if all agents were surefire Immunity Idols against rejections.

- Jay

3 comments:

Miss P AKA Her Royal Cliqueness said...

Ahh, only if it were so.

Your situation is unique since you've kind of been there done that on the agent front.

Maybe the final factor needed to push you one way or another is time. How much of it do you want to put into the search for the best fit for your work?

If you've already narrowed it down to three agents, why not take your chances, submit and see if they are indeed good fits.

What's there to lose?

Some of us are more game and better equipped to submit directly (ummm, I'm not among them).

Knowing you, well for as much as I know you from our cyber chats, you're probably already well versed in what pubs you want to go after.

Still, I think it bodes well that you already know the agents you want to query.

If it turns out they aren't a good fit or turn you down (the fools) nothing's lost but the postage or the time it takes to hit send on an email.

Good luck on the decision.

Debby G. said...

I say go for the agent. Mine not only submits my stuff, but she gives great critiques, negotiates my contracts, nags the publishers to hurry with the contracts, and is a sounding board.

Good luck.

Disco Mermaids said...

Let's see...two comments, two different opinions. Gee, thanks for the help!

But you did give me some more to think about and I appreciate that. I'll let ya know what I do when I'm ready to do it.

- Jay