Monday, August 25, 2008

Do Agents Talk To Each Other?

Yes, Yes, Yes.

Each agency has a connection of other agents they like to "hang with." These might be people they have worked with in the past, or simply those that have similar thoughts on how to approach the business. We don't talk to everyone though. Not that we aren't friends, but that connection is simply not there.

So, what do we talk about? Business, good shopping, food, manuscripts? Actually all of these fall into discussions, but many times, we will pass on recommendations to other agents if we feel that the story is simply not right for us. If someone (although I really don't know why they would do this) would pitch me an inspirational, I might look at it first and if the story sounded really good, I'd pick up the phone and call a colleague of mine that is working in that area with the story idea. Simple as that.

Now here is why I bring this up for you writers. If one agent liked your work enough to read it and make the connection with another agent, you are a fool not to follow up on that lead. When I write that rejection letter, I will tell the person to contact the other agency and use my name. I'm not just passing you on because I don't like your writing, I just feel you would do better with someone else and I found that person.

Got it? So go and contact that person!

I am amazed though, how many times people will blow off that other connection and go with some other agency. I am sorry to say that is sheer stupidity. This business is about networking and you need to take advantage of it.

Hmmmmm, how many times have I said to really listen to to those rejection letters and do something about it?


  1. OMG, people would NOT follow up on such a recommendation????

    I think I would send flowers to an agent who rejected me, but recommended another agent to check with. Especially if the second agent signed me.

    Well, maybe not flowers, but a gift card or something... That's seriously going above and beyond.

  2. Me, too (with the flowers). Any agent/editor who takes time out of their schedule to give me advice is getting some kind of thank you.

  3. Candace and Jessica,

    I agree 100% with you on this and am continually shocked. I did have one author that submitted a story to me, it didn't work for me but was really good, I sent her in the direction of someone else that really knew that genre. When I talked to that agent I was told that this author, when approached to see more of the project simply stated, they wanted to shop around with some other people first. Huh? You have someone interested and you still pass.

    My bet? Next year in Wash. D.C. this author will still be looking.