PBJ - picture book jousting

Oh Snarkamous-Oneder:

I have recently written a picture book manuscript that my agent liked. She took it to an agency meeting and the decision came down as a negative, that in this miserably tough PB market (friggin' celebrity books!) it just wouldn't sell. Now, my agent and I have an understanding that if she ever refuses to submit a manuscript, I may do it. I'm considering it on this one, though I haven't before.

IF, I do this, should I mention that I'm agented in my query? Or would that prejudice the reader, make them think either, "this joker is lying, else why is she submitting this herself?" or "well, if the agent isn't submitting it, it must not be very good." I also wonder whether I really should try, I mean, they must know the market better than I, should I just take this as my barometer?

Yikes. Miss Snark looks around for a lifeboat in these deep waters. First, I don't work in the kids and picture book market at all. They have their own arcane rules of courtship there, and something that might be just dandy out here with the snark on skates crowd might not go over so well with the bunny slipper girls.

That said, my answer is go for it. I'd leave out the part about the agent who loves your work but works for people who don't think they can sell it.

What's the worst that could happen? A scented rejection letter?


Anonymous said...

Eileen Spinelli subs her own work and her agent handles the details after acceptances. Then again, she's Eileen Spinelli.

A less-well-known pb writer friend of mine has an agent who works in a similar way (agency decides which works will be submitted). Agent declined to submit a particular ms, which writer friend then took to a conference and sold almost on the spot to the critiquing editor at a major house.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, anon.
I'm going to start submitting my MS.