Tuesday, September 8, 2009

But it's not fair, they have all the editors and agents

This one is going out to all of the writing chapters out there. I have heard this comment from a lot of writing groups when I go to the larger conventions (and even some of the smaller ones). "Why is it that all of those other groups get all of the editors and agents visiting them?" The answer is simple. They ask.

I am one of those agents that believes in getting out there and discussing books with writers. I just saw an interview with Lucienne Diver of TKA and she stated the same thing. But the funny part is that I have had several writers ask me personally why I haven't visited their chapter. Again, the answer is simple. I haven't been asked.

If you are looking at flying an editor or agent out to your chapter but the cost scares you, consider this option. If there are several writing groups in the area, work together to split the cost. I even had a chapter look at using a timeshare that one of their writers had so they didn't need to work on the hotel arrangements. That was thinking!

Oh, and if you think you are too late for this year, ask again. Go to their websites and see if they are booked. Remember, this is a proactive business it is up to you to make things happen. I guess I should also say that if you aren't an officer but think you have some connections to make that visit happen, go for it.

1 comment:

  1. So, sir, or should I say "madam," still laughing about that one, among others, yes indeed, the option to self-publish has always been out there, but I do not think the option to be listed and sold on the major players' booklists, Amazon, et al, has been there until recently. One reason this has sent me into hyper-gear is that I lost myself COMPLETELY trying to work through the old traditional channels, even though the last year my whole body was screeching that this was the wrong way to go.
    I began writing way back purely because I loved it, and had great success freelancing with long, but not book-length pieces.
    Through no fault of anyone's design to thwart new writers, I foundered entirely on form rejections, ( or less,) because I don't know what they mean. Let's see, not good enough, or good enough but I took something similar and it didn't sell well, or I just took something like it and don't want competition, or worst of all, in this economy, no name recognition and the rest don't matter a damn.
    Again, I could not deal with the torrent of queries that agents report falling on their heads. Wrong personality type altogether here.
    The result of going from a lot of success to a wall of nothing resulted in total paralysis. I began to hate the idea of writing anything, especially the impossible task of coming up with something that would please this utterly faceless "agent." Who is paying a NY mortgage and can't take any chances on anyone who is not sure to sell quickly.
    Cut to the chase, mercifully, here. One late night it occurred to me that I used to write for myself, and I loved it, and it was commercially successfully from the first query. Perhaps because it mattered the most to me. A staggering question ! What would my writing look like, if I started writing what felt exactly right again, what felt like my very best ?
    At the very least, I would have regained some self-respect, instead of endlessly ------after the eternal Faceless Agent, who is only trying to survive, like myself, in a tanking economy.
    Knowing that I could publish this book as soon as it was written, on line, catapulted me into a wonderful place. Many ways to the Magic Mountain, hey, and thanks as always for your kind and incisive comments about the industry.