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Tburger
05-31-2009, 05:36 PM
Hypothetical question:

Let's say an agent has already requested your full, and you sent it. Then let's say two weeks later one of your beta readers get's back to you - late - with a suggestion that you wish you had before you sent the full MS to the agent (i.e., points out a flaw that could be a deal breaker for said agent). Do you:

(a) Do nothing and hope for the best
(b) Send the agent an email explaining what happened, then ask politely if you can resend the full
(c) Strangle the beta reader for not having gotten back to you on time.

A little more explanation: our hypothetical author saved his revisions in MS WORD, with file names that ended in a version number (e.g., ver_1, and ver_10). Of course, when you look at that on a list in the document folder, versions 1 and 10 are right next to each other, and if you click on the wrong one, it's hypothetically possible to send an earlier MS rather than the fully polished one.

Sheesh.

scope
05-31-2009, 08:35 PM
When you send a full to an agent they expect to receive your polished, "final" manuscript. Not a work that you know needs serious revision, as you've come to learn from one of your beta readers. That's not to say that they and/or an editor will not request rewrites of your full, but that's an entirely different matter.

Okay, you believe your manuscript needs to be revised, but to tell this to the agent at this point in time would, IMO, be a mistake. It would reek of non professionalism and probably put a damper on your submission. For the time being I'd leave it as is with this agent. If s/he displays interest in your work you can discuss it with her at that time. However, since I assume you are querying other agents, and if you are convinced that you want to make the changes, do so and have your rewritten manuscript ready for the next agent who requests a partial or full.

Good luck.

Vermilion
06-01-2009, 11:46 AM
I sent partials out and received feedback, made changes and politely sent an e-mail to the agents asking if I could resubmit. Fortunately, two of them responded and said I could do that.

Danthia
06-01-2009, 03:37 PM
Unless I read it wrong, you actually gave two separate issues. One is "doh! I could have made it better" type and the other is "Doh! I sent the wrong file."

If you sent the wrong file, send the right one with an explanation. This happens, agents won't mind (unless they already read the full, then they might be peeved)

If you just found a way to make it better, you can either suck it up and use those changes in the next request, or ask the agent if they'd like a new version. I've heard agents say that's fine, and heard them say this is a sign of a ms. that's not yet ready. I'd suggest seeing if you could find out if this agent expressed a preference anywhere about it first.

Tburger
06-01-2009, 03:41 PM
Unless I read it wrong, you actually gave two separate issues. One is "doh! I could have made it better" type and the other is "Doh! I sent the wrong file."

If you sent the wrong file, send the right one with an explanation. This happens, agents won't mind (unless they already read the full, then they might be peeved)

If you just found a way to make it better, you can either suck it up and use those changes in the next request, or ask the agent if they'd like a new version. I've heard agents say that's fine, and heard them say this is a sign of a ms. that's not yet ready. I'd suggest seeing if you could find out if this agent expressed a preference anywhere about it first.

Yeah - it was an issue of the wrong file getting sent. A cut-and-paste from the edited versions into the to-be-sent-out document gone bad. It's probably been long enough that the only option is to bite the bullet. My beta got the same cut-and-paste and wrote me back: "what gives? I thought you were going to change X, Y, and Z." And then I figured out what went wrong.

The irony: I set up my submissions process this way (cut and paste the final edited version into a new file) to avoid uploading the wrong document.

RoccoMom
06-01-2009, 06:05 PM
If you sent the wrong file, I'd send the agent an email and tell him/her that, and ask if they've started reading, and if you can resend the correct file. I dont' think there's anything wrong with that. We all make mistakes.

i learned to always date the document - that way i know which is the most current version. When I finish, I always put, "XYZ-First Draft 5.31.09".

After my agent gets done chopping it up, i label it, "XYZ-RVnotes-1st revision 6.2.09" and so on and so forth.

Snowstorm
06-01-2009, 06:32 PM
I'd move the revisions to their own folder so your final is a stand-alone file. Or, if you're still working on it, having the WIP as a stand-alone file with the outdated ones tucked away in a folder. This way you'll never send the wrong one.

Snowstorm
06-01-2009, 06:36 PM
I'd move the revisions to their own folder so your final is a stand-alone file. Or, if you're still working on it, having the WIP as a stand-alone file with the outdated ones tucked away in a folder. This way you'll never send the wrong one.

ETA: A hypothetical best wishes for a positive outcome! :D

scope
06-02-2009, 12:44 AM
I think this makes a difference. If in error you sent the wrong file, why not do as others here have suggested?

neener
06-02-2009, 07:32 AM
I had a similar situation, only as a result of feedback from agents with my full I revised. Meanwhile, an agent who hasn't gotten back to me still has my full. Feeling like my revisions really strengthen the story, I sent a polite email asking if the agent would like the revised version. I haven't heard back yet (BEA was this weekend) but I figure I haven't lost much. If my first manuscript wasn't good enough she would have rejected anyway, and if she is fine to look at the revised version all the better. I realize that the agent could get the email and decide my ms wasn't ready when I sent it, but...she might've thought that after reading it anyway. My point is, sometimes it's really hard to tell when something is ready. you can beta and workshop it, and still be missing something. It's all subjective. I think agents understand that to an extent. Besides they are human. We stress too much.

Tburger
06-02-2009, 01:54 PM
Thanks you guys. This is a tough one.

Danthia
06-02-2009, 06:19 PM
Not tough at all. If it was a mistake, email the agent and let them know. This happens, and unless they're almost done, they'll probably be fine with having you resend.

Julie Worth
06-02-2009, 06:37 PM
One agent has had my full for seven months and still hasn't gotten to it. I asked her assistant if I could send an update and he said sure. I think it would be unreasonable for an agent not to accept it if they're going to take so long.

scope
06-03-2009, 02:36 AM
Not tough at all. If it was a mistake, email the agent and let them know. This happens, and unless they're almost done, they'll probably be fine with having you resend.

A big DITTO!

scope
06-03-2009, 02:42 AM
One agent has had my full for seven months and still hasn't gotten to it. I asked her assistant if I could send an update and he said sure.

Of course it makes sense, but only because he agreed to your request.

I think it would be unreasonable for an agent not to accept it if they're going to take so long.

Well, in spite of what we think, agents and editors can be, and sometimes are unreasonable. Truth is, they have lots going on and sometimes don't want to grant out requests.

stormie
06-03-2009, 02:48 AM
I wouldn't worry about it. Usually if an agent likes your writing style or "voice," they'll contact you. And there are usually revisions that they suggest. And it may be nothing along the lines of what your beta reader said.

Tburger
06-03-2009, 11:58 PM
Oh well. Just when I was about to hit send on the email explaining what had happened, I got the rejection on my full. Funny, but she loved the writing. The problem had nothing to do with whether I had sent ver.1 or ver.10! Thanks anyway, you guys. At least if this ever happens again, I'll know what to do.

Epiphany
06-05-2009, 12:41 AM
I guess it would depend on how long they take to get back to you. An agent who has my full is supposed to get back to me by Wednesday, but we have already talked on the phone about my partial and she said she wanted to discuss making revisions in the preface and character development. So naturally, already I'm hacking away at trouble spots and pushing for my betas to give me more edits, which I will only give to her if she decides that she wants to represent me.
However, this has all happened within a span of three weeks. If an agent has had your manuscript for months and hasn't gotten to it yet, I would send them a polite letter and ask if you could send them a revised copy.

Epiphany
06-05-2009, 12:42 AM
oops, I guess my post is irrelevant now that I read your last post. Well, good luck with other agents! And happy revising!

Tburger
06-08-2009, 03:29 PM
oops, I guess my post is irrelevant now that I read your last post. Well, good luck with other agents! And happy revising!

Not a problem, and thanks. At the urging of another AW'er, I sent a polite email asking for a chance to resubmit, if I decided to revise. The agent got back to me the same day with a "yeah, I'd take another look at it."

So I'll wait for more feedback and if it looks like others share the same opinion, a revision might be in my future. It has to do with the novel's structure.

Epiphany
06-08-2009, 11:38 PM
congrats! I hope it goes well this time!