View Full Version : Re-Submission to Agent After Requested Revisions

05-22-2008, 07:30 PM
I was thrilled in December to have a semi-positive response from a great agent. She liked my book but thought it was too short. She suggested that I increase the length by a specified amount and said she’d love to see any revisions I do.

I am finally done with the revisions, but now I’m not sure of the etiquette for re-contacting her. My plan was to reply to the last e-mail she sent to me, which had her request to see revisions. Is it presumptuous to attach the revised manuscript in my e-mail to her, or should I wait for her to confirm that she does indeed want to see it? (She prefers electronic submissions.) Should I be sure to include the original query as a reminder of the book’s content?

I am sure this question has been asked a million times, please forgive me for not finding previous advice in the archives. Thank in advance for your suggestions on how to go forward.

Also, just out of my own curiosity (er… anxiety), how promising is it when an agent requests revisions? Is it common for agents to make such requests, or does it just depend on the agent? If only I knew where to find a crystal ball…

05-22-2008, 07:45 PM
Hmm, since she said she'd love to see a revised version and since you are sending it in an easily deleted electronic version, I'd do just what you suggest --- reply to her e-mail and attach the ms. And put the plot summary paragraph from your original query in your reply.

My current agent asked for revisions before she signed me. It probably does depend on the agent though. And the revisions.

05-22-2008, 08:16 PM
Ditto to what lkp said.

05-22-2008, 08:58 PM
Ditto to both.
and yes, i think requesting revisions is an excellent sign.

05-22-2008, 09:18 PM
I would reply to the original email, letting her know how much you appreciate her input and that you're ready to send the revised ms to her. I'd also include the original ms pitch from you query if it's not in the original email to refresh her memory. However, I wouldn't attach the ms since she didn't say, "Send it as an attachment when it's ready."

I think it's a very positive sign when an agent requests revisions. My former agent asked for some plot revisions before offering representation. But I knew that even if she didn't offer representation, my ms was stronger because of her.

Best of luck!

05-22-2008, 09:49 PM
I agree with mystery girl. It's best to jog her memory by replying to her email that requested the material after revision...and ask if she wishes it as an attachment...then I would always put the title and requested material in the subject line as a reply and include the pitch from the original query.
Make sure you have spent enough time editing and don't be in a hurry to send. My agent says it's always a bad sign when you tell an author to lengthen and revise and you get their material back in 2 weeks...that's not enough time for thoughtful work...

05-22-2008, 10:09 PM
Thank you all for your thoughtful replies! I’ve been away from the watercooler for some time (over a year) and this is a reminder to me that the writers on here are an incredible resource. I should hang out more often. Thank you!!

I think I will err on the side of caution and not send the attachment. I’ll send her a friendly reminder of the work, since it has been almost six months since she saw it, and ask if she’d like to see my revised manuscript. ORION - I hear what you are saying on writers who turn around revisions too quickly… I was actually fearful that my revisions took too long and the agent may think that I’m not able to spit out work fast enough.

I am still waiting on a final response from one notoriously slow beta on a very minor issue, so hopefully I’ll hear from him this week. Assuming he doesn’t have any further revisions, I should be able to contact the agent next week. This will give me time to obsessively compose an e-mail to the agent, taking all of your suggestions into consideration!

Even if she doesn’t ultimately offer me representation, I still believe I have a better novel thanks to these revisions… and I still consider it a victory to have a high quality agent show this level of interest.

Thanks again!!!