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DennyCrane
06-04-2009, 08:28 PM
Right. So, you’re not exactly in Purgatory. Nor do you have that percolating sense of Doom. And nobody’s offered any Coffee, though there is a degree of Pain. In fact, up until now, things have gone…not so bad. But now the wheels of publication seem to have ground to a halt. The worst part? It’s got nothing to do with you.

Welcome to the Land of Pause.

Is it me or has the market taken an overdose of Hurryupandwait? I’m sitting on almost a year since I’ve been represented. A YEAR. Sure, I had expectations that the publishing industry was slow, but good grief. I thought by now I would at least be on submission. My agent is doing what a lot of agents are doing – protecting their clients by waiting until the market stabilizes before approaching editors.

Now what? Besides biting your nails and watching the clock tick, what do we do? Press the situation and force a submission? Wait until the industry starts on its antidepressant regime? When is the right time? Will the industry ever be back?

Ugh…

Irysangel
06-04-2009, 08:42 PM
Wait, you've been repped for a year and you haven't gone out on submission?

Red-Green
06-04-2009, 08:56 PM
Since I know six people who've sold books in the last year, I'm also pretty stunned at the idea of your not having gone on submission yet.

Toothpaste
06-04-2009, 09:34 PM
I too am stunned, considering I just finished an email conversation with my agent about sending my stuff out next week. Considering too I know several new authors who have sold in the last six months. This does not sound like the norm in the publishing industry at all. A year?? I think you need to have a serious conversation with your agent . . .

brainstorm77
06-04-2009, 09:40 PM
There have been many sales reported by AW members.

Irysangel
06-04-2009, 09:48 PM
The only logical thing that immediately springs to my mind is 'elephant hunter' syndrome. The agent wants the big deal and is therefore waiting for a break in the market so he/she can sell it for optimal money.

Of course, I don't know your agent or your book, so cannot presume, but that was the first thing that came to my mind. But publishing is slow, not dead...

Karen Duvall
06-04-2009, 09:51 PM
Ack! A whole year? That's not normal. My agent has my second manuscript she's sending out to publishers next week. The first one continues to make the rounds, but she hasn't stopped. To stop is to die. Seriously. You need to have a heart-to-heart with your agent.

JenWriter
06-04-2009, 10:12 PM
It took me a long time to go on sub, but not a year! We just started subbing late April. I think it might be a good idea to have a talk and say you're ready to go on submission now. Things are slow, but deals--even debuts--are being made.

elae
06-04-2009, 10:32 PM
Judging from the OP's blog, I'd say he's been working on revisions with his agents until recently (or could even still be doing them?), hence the not going out on submission. I don't think you can really say the agent's been putting off submission for a year if most of that time has been spent without a submittable book!

Irysangel
06-04-2009, 10:38 PM
Working on revisions is one thing (and perfectly fine). It's this part that made my eyebrows raise:


I’m sitting on almost a year since I’ve been represented. A YEAR. Sure, I had expectations that the publishing industry was slow, but good grief. I thought by now I would at least be on submission. My agent is doing what a lot of agents are doing – protecting their clients by waiting until the market stabilizes before approaching editors.

To me, that is the questionable part.

elae
06-05-2009, 04:20 PM
I'd heard it said by quite a few agents (including my own) at the beginning of the year, so it didn't strike me as particularly odd, I guess. With so many editors let go or reassigned and the remaining ones in the position of having to pick up all of the scattered books, adding to their existing work-load, a lot of agents wanted to wait a few weeks for the dust to settle before presenting even more.

Now that it's June, of course, I think it's a little odd to still be using that excuse--and certainly worth approaching the agent about--but I just found it unfair to say the agent was putting it off for an entire year when that doesn't seem to be the case.

EgyptianGoddess
06-05-2009, 05:07 PM
Ummm.....maybe you need a new agent? That just doesn't sound right to me at all.

Irysangel
06-05-2009, 05:58 PM
Endeavor is a big agency. I'm not trying to imply that his agent is a scammer or should immediately be fired. I just really have to scratch my head at the whole situation.

EgyptianGoddess
06-05-2009, 06:25 PM
Endeavor is a big agency. I'm not trying to imply that his agent is a scammer or should immediately be fired. I just really have to scratch my head at the whole situation.


Something has clearly happened to make them, in essense, drop his book. It sounds like excuses to me. Either the agent is suddenly lazy, or has other clients that are more "sure things"....but something is going on. Maybe they've changed their mind about how much they want to rep the book.

In any case, I would seriously start looking for a new agent. Just sitting there like that doesn't do any good at all. And books are being published every day, so I don't buy that excuse at all.

DennyCrane
06-05-2009, 09:00 PM
He’s definitely not lazy. With 2 line edits and one global, plus several pages of notes, he’s been an extraordinary agent as far as getting the manuscript into shape. On top of that, the manuscript did need some work, so a lot of the waiting is my fault.

When you take into account he’s transferred from one agency and then had that agency merge with another all in the past year, I feel he deserves my patience considering the effort he’s put into the book.

Still, like Tom Petty says, “Waiting is the hardest part.”

Anonymissy
06-05-2009, 09:57 PM
I think the agency transfer must be part of it too. It's great that he worked so hard with you DennyCrane, to get your book ready!

I'm okay waiting when I know how long the wait will be. I recently applied for a wonderful writing residency -- and they were very clear about when they were going to reply. I rarely think about it.

So it's uncertainty combined with waiting that's the killer. I think a lot of the things we do around waiting for uncertain outcomes -- googling agents and editors and poring over their interviews and twitter posts -- asking other people about their experiences with agents or editors on this board, to name two -- are all about finding more certainty.

I just need more things to help me forget I'm waiting, I think, because in THIS business the only thing that's certain is that the outcome is uncertain.