Pub Rants

A Very Nice Literary Agent Indulges in Polite Rants About Queries, Writers, and the Publishing Industry

Not The Flashy Stuff

STATUS: I think we managed to conquer my home tech issues.

What’s playing on the iPod right now? 6 O’CLOCK NEWS by Kathleen Edwards

So much of what an agent does on a daily basis is rather subtle and not written into the job description per se. For example, today I changed an editor’s mind. She was only going to offer for one book and I talked her into going back to her boss and getting permission to offer for two.

Now this didn’t happen just because I asked her to. This happened for a couple of reasons: 1) I gave her good ammunition to use in persuading her boss to reconsider and give the okay and 2) because we’ve had a business relationship for years and the editor trusts that I’m not just blowing hot air when I say that I will make XYZ happen.

In all the discussions about agents and what we do, I’ve never heard this particular aspect spotlighted–that part of our value is in our established relationships with editors—and not just in terms of getting submissions read or larger advances offered for projects etc. because that I do hear a lot of times.

Today was not the flashy stuff but equally as important. And every agent I know does this kind of stuff regularly.

12 Responses

  1. Remilda Graystone said:

    Then that’s all the more reason to appreciate an agent. Really, it’s too bad these things aren’t talked about. I think if you work this hard, you should definitely get the credit for it. Your clients are lucky to have you. In fact, anybody who gets an agent who works as hard as you seem to is very fortunate.

  2. behlerblog said:

    As one who sits on that particular side of the desk, I can attest to the fact that great agents can do many great things. Establishing relationships is Step 1. Consistently bringing top dog work is Step 2. Staying involved with the production process is Step 3.

    All those elements go into creating trust – which is all important in this business, and there are agents for whom I drop my margarita because I trust them.

    I have no doubt that you engender trust within the hearts and minds of the editors you work with. Brava!

  3. John M said:

    What I want to know is did you fix your home tech issues yourself? I have been impressed with how tech savvy you and your agency are.

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