PDA

View Full Version : Strange request



Dragonfly45
10-20-2008, 04:46 AM
Sorry for posting this in two threads, but I'm in need of advice!

I just got a reply to a query/5 sample pages that says, "Can you tell me about your writing background? Thanks!" No partial request, anything like that...just that note. Um...okay, so I don't have anything, really, to tell aside from the fact that I've written two other novels that haven't been picked up...but I don't know whether to answer and mention them, answer and say this is my first novel (even though it's my third)...? All I do besides that is blog, which I don't think warrants a mention really. Help, please!

JoNightshade
10-20-2008, 04:52 AM
I would be honest and mention that you don't really have any writing credits to speak of, but this is the third novel you've written. I've read some agent blogs lately talking about how an author saying "This is my first novel!" is like saying "I'm a total noob!" It seems to me that they like to know you're dedicated enough to have written three. Having two other novels that are trunked (or not picked up or whatever) tells them you've worked your butt off. Tons of authors have trunked novels, so it's not a count against you.

And unless your blog traffic is significant, I wouldn't mention it. :)

vixey
10-20-2008, 04:55 AM
I agree with what JoNightshade said. Though, I must admit, the request for background info without a partial request was a bit odd.

MagicMan
10-20-2008, 08:47 AM
Check the agent/agency on the Bewares list as well.

heyjude
10-20-2008, 06:06 PM
I got the same request from a reputable agent. I don't think it's that uncommon. I just said I hadn't had anything published, but this was my 3rd book. She was super nice while rejecting me. :)

aka eraser
10-20-2008, 06:37 PM
Please excuse the following unhelpful musing:

I don't get why an agent/pub would even ask that question. Surely, if a writer had any sort of notable publishing experience, s/he would note it in the cover letter/query. If nothing is mentioned, it seems a safe bet there's nothing to tell - so why bother asking?

Edmontonian
10-20-2008, 06:42 PM
Hi aka_eraser:

I don't get it either and I've just settled for the fact that some agents/publishers are just... Well, I should not swear. In any case, one would rather not work for people who don't understand how writing and publishing a book really works. Then, going for years without an agent is like the years in high school, when desperate for dates, one would agree to go out with, well, almost anyone.

Just my two Canadian cents,

ED

Bufty
10-20-2008, 07:11 PM
You really like peeing in your own bed.


Hi aka_eraser:

I don't get it either and I've just settled for the fact that some agents/publishers are just... Well, I should not swear. In any case, one would rather not work for people who don't understand how writing and publishing a book really works. Then, going for years without an agent is like the years in high school, when desperate for dates, one would agree to go out with, well, almost anyone.

Just my two Canadian cents,

ED

melaniehoo
10-20-2008, 07:19 PM
Colby, I agree with the advice to mention this is your third novel. That shows you have the drive and commitment, even if you haven't published anything. And yes, that seems a little odd to me too, but what can you do?

Good luck!

Edmontonian
10-20-2008, 10:31 PM
You're a real ...

ED