The SASE Divorcee

A faithful Snarkling asked if we should mention former agents (in query letters). You said yes.

Out of her two options, which do you prefer? Naming the former agent or just a casual mention of previous representation? (Assuming the agent isn't NoName Joe from Podunkville or Binky)

You can handle it either way but if I like your work and want to discuss representation with you I'm going to ask who what when where and why before we go much further.

Agent hopping can be a sign of bad agents but it can also be a leading indicator of a client with unrealistic expectations. I have several clients who "divorced" their first/second agents and we had very frank discussions about how I work and what they can expect. Some folks never got passed that stage cause it was clear they needed a much different style of interaction than what I offer. That doesn't make them difficult or wrong, it just makes me a bad fit for their needs.

Telling me upfront you were formerly represented by anyone isn't an automatic no.


DonkeyWriter said...

How often do you email your clients to give them updates on their novels on submission?

Is it normal for an agent to not contact their writer for over 3 months while the book is on submission?

THRILL said...

Hey DonkeyWriter

There are comprehensive posts on this topic in the archives--raising it again might cause poor Miss Snark to retreat to her gin pail!

For the devotion (hmm, maybe snarl works better) of snarklings out there, I subscribe to the www.dictionary.com word of the day, and a little over a week back received this gem:

"Word of the Day for Tuesday October 18, 1005

votary \VOH-tuh-ree\, noun:
1. One who is devoted, given, or addicted to some particular
pursuit, subject, study, or way of life.
2. A devoted admirer.
3. A devout adherent of a religion or cult.
4. A dedicated believer or advocate."

Ira Rosofsky said...

Miss Snark, does having prior representation get you some bonus points on the this is not-crapometer? Do you give the work a benefit of the doubt when you know that some respected colleague has given it the nod? And, this might seem trivially true, do writers who have had representation submit on average better stuff than the rest of the slush pile?