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Thread: Carolyn Jenks Agency

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  2. #2
    Hard to put a name on sascoggin's Avatar
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    Carolyn Jenks Agency

    Raleigh Dugal, Acquisitions Editor, just responded to my query with a request for the first 50 pages. I'll let you know the tone of any response I get.

    No one else? They claim to have been around since 1979.
    Ghosts, chemistry, revenge, an open Senate seat, high explosives. What could possibly go wrong?
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  3. #3
    practical experience, FTW frandavea's Avatar
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    Well, in looking over the website, aside from Ms. Jenks, whose previous experience appears to be mostly in publishing, based on the numerous staff bios, I didn't notice any real mention of relevant agent experience. Lots of warm-hearted personal info, but no mentions of any sales or previous agent work. And some of them look like they're barely out of high school (not that that matters, really).
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  4. #4
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Re: the staff: why so many editors (as opposed to agents)?

    - Victoria

  5. #5
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Good day all, I sent out hundreds of query letters earlier this summer and as you might of have guessed I received dozens of form letter rejections. The other responses were from "editing" agencies and vanity publishers. Then I received a response from a young man that says he works for the Carolyn Jenks agency. I went to their website and they look legit but something didn't feel quit right. I “google'd” the mess out of the agency but couldn't find any information good or bad. Does anyone out there no anything about this agency?

  6. #6
    practical experience, FTW thephoenix's Avatar
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    they look extremely legit, and i think they are. alas, i don't know how to properly search for background information. i mean, a lot of their interns are from harvard and wellesley.
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  7. #7
    practical experience, FTW thephoenix's Avatar
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    just found out via the interwebs, not sure if this is accurate, but she sold Anita Diamant's 'The Red Tent' which is PRETTY big

    Source
    You do not have to be good.
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  8. #8
    AW Addict nicolesingslave's Avatar
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    Lee, you could just call the agency to find out about the young man. I am sure they'll answer your call if it's just a check and not a sale call. :-)

  9. #9
    Blessed by the AW Gods Jessianodel's Avatar
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    I looked them up on predators and editors and an update in 2004 said they "no longer charges upfront fees"

    Which sounds like they were sketchy, but aren't anymore? I don't know
    Cuando despertó, el dinosaurio todavía estaba allí. - Augusto Monterroso

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  10. #10
    practical experience, FTW thephoenix's Avatar
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    anyone else have any experience?
    You do not have to be good.
    You do not have to walk on your knees
    for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body
    love what it loves.
    - Mary Oliver


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  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW thephoenix's Avatar
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    they recently asked for a partial, i wanted to get everyone's thoughts before i sent it.
    You do not have to be good.
    You do not have to walk on your knees
    for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
    You only have to let the soft animal of your body
    love what it loves.
    - Mary Oliver


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  12. #12
    Not-so-new PortableHal's Avatar
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    I'd send the partial.

    You can decide if you want to go forward later if they request a full.
    "Life isn't fair. It's just fairer than death, that's all." -- William Goldman, The Princess Bride

  13. #13
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    They requested a partial from me end of October. Haven't heard anything yet (?). Im thinking of following up maybe in a month or two. I thought they might be good since they sold 'The Red Tent', which is indeed pretty big.

  14. #14
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    A big sale--but made many, many years ago. As impressive as past sales may be, the test of an agent is his or her current sales.

    - Victoria

  15. #15
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Ah, good point. Thanks for making me aware of this, Victoria. I do wonder though what it means that they represent the "estate" of Anita Diamant.. i thought it was just a fancy way of putting things but now I'm not too sure.

  16. #16
    Such a nasty woman SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    When an agency represents "the estate of" a writer, it means the writer is dead but the agency continues to look after the works of that writer--by ensuring royalties are paid by publishers where required, that if new deals are struck they're the best that can be made, and so on.

    It doesn't guarantee that the agency or agent concerned represented that writer when the writer was alive, though.

  17. #17
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Oh, that's strange, because as far as I know, Anita Diamant is still alive and kicking. Hmmm.

  18. #18
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Oops... re the estate, I got it mixed up. I checked the website, and this is what I've gleaned:

    "Anita Diamant's fiction career was launched with the publication of her bestseller, The Red Tent, by St. Martin's Press and Picador, which has sold close to 3 million copies to date and been published in fourteen countries. This property is actively represented by Carolyn Jenks Agency."
    What do they mean by that (re the last sentence)?


    I also saw that Anita Diamant was listed in the "backlist" of clients. Does that mean she's no longer a client?

    Sorry, I know I'm really clueless here.

  19. #19
    Hello. My name is Inigo Montoya. kaitie's Avatar
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    My guess--I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong--is that the agency sold that particular book, and then the two parted ways, but that due to the agency agreement the agency still handles that particular book, or something along those lines. I could be wrong, though.


  20. #20
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kaitie View Post
    My guess--I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong--is that the agency sold that particular book, and then the two parted ways, but that due to the agency agreement the agency still handles that particular book, or something along those lines. I could be wrong, though.
    You are correct. Diamant is now repped by Amanda Urban.

    The history of how The Red Tent became a success is actually quite interesting. Carolyn Jenks sold it to St. Martin's Press for a modest advance; it languished in hardcover, but its phenomenal success in paperback was largely due to Diamant's tireless and inventive self-promotion--in an era before author self-promo was the norm.

    - Victoria

  21. #21
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Ah, i see. Thanks for enlightening me, everyone.

    I actually heard about Carolyn Jenks because in 'The Red Tent', Ms Diamant acknowledged her as her agent. So I thought she might be good. But well... Anyway, i haven't heard back from them on my partial, and seeing as the feedback I've been receiving on them has not been too positive, i guess i shall cross the off.

    Thanks again.

  22. #22
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin fictionman's Avatar
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    CJ replied to my query in a matter of hours and requested a partial. Seems very efficient.

  23. #23
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    I'm new to Absolute Write, but I saw the mixed reviews of the Carolyn Jenks Agency. She recently offered me representation for my most new novel, so I asked the advice of a respected, New York based editor. Here's what she emailed - verbatim: "This is wonderful news! I am delighted for you. Carolyn Jenks has a wonderful reputation and deals with only the smartest, most literary authors. She has a terrific track record with theater and visual art as well and I do think she would provide a perfect home for your beautiful novel. I am so happy to hear this and am sending my heartfelt congratulations."

  24. #24
    practical experience, FTW Purple Rose's Avatar
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    Well done Snafu! Congratulations :-))) So happy for you! You said "most new novel" so does that mean you have a few already published? Did you have an agent for those? If so, any reason you swtiched?

  25. #25
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Thanks, Purple Rose. Yes, I've published 6 other novels, but they were unagented and with minor e publishers. I had one horrible experience with an agent before, which almost soured me on looking for another. But then, the multitude of rejections changed my mind.

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