Finding an Agent is a bi-*shh*

Deviant Art’s ©~louro

One thing I learned from people who are more knowledgeable than I am when it comes to this: You don’t have the right to rant. You only have the right to be patient, and be professional.

The Publishing Industry is one of the fields that never stops progressing. In my belief, literature has been a big part of our world since the Bible has been published.

But when has it been published, really? To be honest, I have no idea. However, before we all get religious here, I think that it is one of the industries that keeps on developing and continuously outdoing itself. As I always describe this: it is its own enemy.

My first book, The Chosen Ones, has been finished for quite a while now. Months, to be precise. I’ve been wanting to publish it since I finished everything – starting when I was through doing the first, second, third drafts; then after I edited it countless of times, and when I finally was done editing its cover.

Well, the cover part is not really included.

At first, I was thinking of going indie for this one. But everything changed when I get good feedback from people I trust to tell me the truth (who can also be harsh, but constructive, at the same time.) Hence, I started looking for a literary agent.

I thought, “It can’t be that hard to find someone to represent me. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of agents out there who would certainly want to do that job for me.”

I was wrong, nevertheless.

I learned about this when I first sent a query letter to ***** (I’m not going to name anyone, or any companies.) I’ve waited for months before I finally got a reply from them, only knowing that they can’t represent me.

I am the kind of person who would rather not send my work to a lot of agents, and just choose one when two or more would say they’d be happy to represent me. I don’t want to waste someone’s time only to fulfill my desires to have my work be out there in the market. I know that they are just as important as I am, and I am in no position to do anything that would probably hurt their working routine.

But I need to be honest. It is becoming really more difficult for me to keep this going. I am a very impatient person before all this happened. I’ve never wanted to be the person who’s being kept waiting. I was never someone who would think of other people’s well-being if mine is already not in good shape. I was never those. However, things have changed when I finally decided to become a writer. (If you wanna know how I got myself into writing, read this.)

In my head, writing is the hardest part of being a writer. I was half-wrong, it turned out. Because writing is not the only part which is the hardest when you choose to go this way. It is the whole process which is difficult to do. It wastes a lot of your time, put your hard works on hold, your sanity in jeopardy (at times), and your social life. And then comes the part when you have to look for an agent (for starting writers, and who chooses to go traditional.)

But life ain’t easy. It’s never been. If you’re looking for comfort, this is not for you. But if you’re looking for a lifetime fulfillment, this is the way you’re supposed to be.

So, for us writers, we don’t have the right to be querulous. Patience is a virtue, as many would say. But I’ll say: Never complain. If you truly believe with what you’ve done, there’s no point for you to be impatient. Time is your friend. Sometimes, it takes a right timing to find the right person.

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Posted on 02/13/2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Well, I think, at the end of the day, you need to rethink some of the “I’m not going to waste anyone’s time,” feeling. Send your work to multiple agents and don’t worry about wasting their time. It’s a waste of YOUR time to slow the process down for yourself. It’s great to try and be patient about these sorts of things, and it’s great that you don’t want to complain, but there’s a thin line and you’re just about over it, my friend.

    • I probably would give that a thought, Madlen. 🙂 I just don’t want to waste anybody else’s time, that’s all. But I think, mine is the one being put to waste. And I think you have a point. I said in the post that they are as important as I am. But I forgot that, if that’s the case, then, I am just as important as they are. 😀 Thanks!

  2. Simple math: If you query 2 agents at a time and wait for them to respond before querying the next two, and it happens that your “dream agent” is 16th on the list, it’ll take you about two years to get her request for your manuscript. Then the real waiting begins.

    • Will it not be too ugly to tell them, after they tell me their interested with my work, that, “I’m sorry. somebody else wants my work, and I wanna go with him/her rather than you”? Because I don’t want them to think that I was just playing with them, or that they’d ask themselves to why I even bothered them to have my work be read if I would just go with the others. I think people would think I’m stupid for saying these. 😦

      • I’ve heard this happens a lot. If two agents offer you representation, that’s awesome. It’s not something that happens that often, so I wouldn’t worry about that. Besides, it’s YOUR choice who you go with because it’s YOUR book, and you shouldn’t be afraid of offending someone. Do you want to tie your book up for years just because you’re afraid of hurting someone’s feelings?

        And I don’t think these agents are not going to get their feelings hurt because you go with a different agent. They have plenty of clients and lots of work. They will probably forget about you the next day unless they believe your work is phenomenal. And I don’t mean to say they’re careless or anything, but there are a lot of books out there that they believe in, and yours will just be one among the masses. That is if you get representation offers from more than one and have to turn someone down.

        Hope that helps in your search! When I query, I will query at least 5 agents at a time. They’re used to that. Not to mass queries like one letter addresses to a bunch of different agents, but individual queries sent on the same day.

  3. My darling, it rarely has anything to do with talent, skill or any of it. I have been told on many occassions (by people in the profession) that you’re unlikely to get famous from writing unless you already ARE famous. I.e that idiot Snooki from Jersey Shore being HANDED a book deal! Famous people get book deals. Authors get to kill themselves trying to promote. I very nearly got myself an agent. I was told my work was great, etc etc, but I’d ‘Missed the boat’ on the subject matter. Unfortunately ‘Angels had already been done’ Great. Problem is, I finished writing it BEFORE they ‘had been done’ and spent so long waiting for responses from agents. Some I am still getting back now, having sent them out over 18 months ago. Ridiculous. Frustrating, but at least if I need to wallpaper my house, I have enough rejections to do it 🙂

  4. Also, send it out to EVERYONE! Seriously, at the same time! It takes months to get responses. If they want your work, it won’t matter if someon else has it, just warn them that others have been sent it. If their offer is good, just refuse any others. Simple as. The only person who’s time is important it YOURS! They get paid to read the things! x

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