Thursday, July 15, 2010

Question from a Writer - Follow up to blog post

Quick question - when you say they've got to decide on staying with X or going with Y, I assume you're talking about agents? I know in the acting world, you're usually permitted to have one agent - and they'll handle both theatre and film/TV work. What if you have books in different genres that you're trying to get published? Can you have 2 agents especially when one may not cover that particular genre?

I was actually talking about choices in publishers on this one but I wanted to take the time to answer your question about the agent side of things.

I honestly think a lot of agents will take different approaches to this one. If the agency your agent works at has people that work in different genres, it isn't uncommon to be able to work with technically multiple agents and still remain within the house. As for agents working outside of an agency, again, I think this all depends on the agent.

I know that I have heard some agents say that they will only represent your writing if they are able to represent everything. If that is a genre they don't represent, then they pass on it. I really don't know the reason for it. I am wondering if part of the reason is that there might be a concern that the information you get from one agent starts to contradict the agent you get from the other. It might also be that there is a fear that the other agent would start representing both and then the first agent is out of the loop.

I personally think it is best to find an agent that represents everything you do. As for me, I will only represent the romance and women's fiction markets for standard print publishers. If you want to do something else, you are on your own for that. It's just the approach I take.

Thanks for the question.



  1. Thanks for answering my question, Scott. I guess it's similar to sending queries - it depends on the agent. I asked because I'm working on 2 novels and they are different genres. I'm following many agents to get a feel of the industry knowing that at some point I will be contacting a selected few who represent the genres I write. It's great that there are agents like yourself out there who are spending time and energy on educating us writers on how the industry works and most importantly you yourself work. I appreciate your straight-talking advice, Scott. Thanks.

  2. Scott, I have a question based on the past couple days blogs. If someone wants to go the slow route to print but wants to learn more about the industry and the publishing/editing process (beyond researching blogs and reading books/websites) would you say attempting e-publishing is a good way to learn this?