Death of an Agent

I fired my literary agent last week. 

The Noose   Crazy?  

The feeling can only be compared to the time I broke up with my first boyfriend, and the mantra, stuck in my head for days before and after the deed, the same: Will I ever have another?

Strangely, the reason for the breakup was also the same.  If you’re going to have a relationship with anyone, business or personal, both parties have to “get” each other; each has to believe in the other and both have to care.  It’s like a marriage.  There has to be communication and trust and consideration.

Like any bad marriage, the signs are often there before the vows are spoken.Wedding Ring

My first book is from the dogs point of view.  I knew going into the relationship that my agent didn’t have a dog; my agent didn’t like dogs. 

Coincidence that the manuscript has not sold? 

You might like something, but if you don’t “get”it, it’s hard to talk anyone into putting money behind it.  Personally, I think it is an affirmation on the power of faith…here you may define faith any way you choose.

I sent my second manuscript to my agent last October.  She responded in seven days, asking me to change the first forty pages.  I did the edits in three days and returned them to her, exactly as she requested.  I waited for the rest of the notes on the book so I could get going on the polish.  I waited.  And I waited.  And I waited.

Last Friday, FOUR months later, I finally received an answer.  Ironically, I had mailed a letter to her that day, releasing her from our contract.

Now, if I hadn’t already had two well-respected people in publishing read the manuscript for me, this would have been a “Hemingway Moment“: Picture a bottle of Jack Daniels and a shotgun.

Instead, I got busy on doing the edit with a dear friend who edits for a living.

A week later, I again have representation. 

It was no problem finding another “boyfriend”, so-to-speak.   He actually knocked at my door.  And this time I knew going in: he likes animals, he likes my writing, he likes me and he “gets” my story.

'I Wanna Lay You Down On A Bouquet  Of Roses...'

The moral?  There are two. 

One: Do not wait on anything.  The game only brings more of the same.  Get going

Two: Have the confidence in yourself to get going and take a chance.  There will always be another “boyfriend” down the road—sometimes just outside the gate.


~ by rfgainey on March 5, 2008.

4 Responses to “Death of an Agent”

  1. Good for you! I would think an agent, like any salesperson, would do better at selling if they believed in the product. In this case, if she doesn’t like dogs, how well can she sell your book? How enthusiastic can she get?

  2. Hi,

    I sure can relate to this post. Once I waitied for two years to hear back from a publisher, and they had requested my work! Well, I didn’t exactly wait all that time because I forgot, then looked back in my submission book, and there it was. I contacted them, and wouldn’t you know it, they misplaced my manuscript. Then sent it back, and it looked like they never touched it! What a business. We writers need a tough skin! Thanks for sharing…


  3. What does Mr. Boeing think of your new boyfriend? Was he around when the newbie knocked on your door? Perhaps it was a metaphorical knock.

    Anyway, from a dog’s point of view? You never told me that. Where can I buy this book?

    The noose was a bit much, by the way…

    Intrigued in Colorado

  4. Hey, Dick! Ciao! Mr. Boeing thinks any movement forward is good…just like the new 787.

    Dog’s point fo view book will be making the publishing rounds soon. Will let you know the progress on that.

    Thanks for the comment!

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