View Full Version : Can you mention being agented in an author bio?

Wayne K
03-29-2010, 10:31 PM
I'm doing a nonfiction proposal, and want to mention it, but it's not a big deal if I can't. I think it would lend credibility to the fact I can write is all

the addster
03-29-2010, 10:42 PM
I'm assuming that your agent doesn't handle non-fiction?

I've seen agencies mentioned in bios for freelance work. I wouldn't know why you couldn't mention it in a proposal. The one drawback I can see is the publisher being concerned that your other projects might interfere with the book you are proposing.

I submitted a new non-fic proposal to a publisher last week. I'm technically still on sub on another project, I didn't mention it. But it's up to you.

Wayne K
03-29-2010, 10:54 PM
My agent handles nonfic, but if he passes on this, I want to send it out to others.

03-29-2010, 11:19 PM
Don't mention it. It is in publishing roughly equivalent to saying you have a driver's license to mention being agented in this sort of a bio.

Wayne K
03-30-2010, 02:00 AM
Thank you Lisa. I don't know what the etiquette is

03-30-2010, 02:03 AM
Thank you Lisa. I don't know what the etiquette is

It's a good question; this stuff can be tricky.

I also don't mention that I haven't a driver's license . . .

03-30-2010, 03:13 AM
My agent handles nonfic, but if he passes on this, I want to send it out to others.

Color me confused.

If you have a contract with the agent (agency) and s/he handles nonfiction, are you bound while under contract to submit all your works to the agent? If so, and you are telling us that you want to know what to do if the agent passes, the questions is what can you do. Well, you could terminate the agent under the boundaries of the contract and submit on your own to publishers and/or other agents. But if you did this why would you want to list the terminated agent in your bio? You could wait out the term of your agent agreement and if nothing happens not, not renew it. But again, if you did this why would you want to list the agent in your bio?
Or, if your agent passes on the work you could ask him or her if you could submit this particular work to publishers on your own. Frankly I don't think an agent would say okay, but that's up to you and your agent. And even if the agent did say okay, and you sold the work to a publisher, the agent might still be entitled to 15%. And again, why would you want to list the agent in your bio. If contacted I don't see how s/he would comment positively on the work. And as already said, if there is a way you can do what you want, wouldn't it just confuse editors and/or other agents?

Wayne K
03-30-2010, 01:05 PM
I need to read the contract, but I'm pretty sure we're only contracted for the book that's out. Let me check it out

03-30-2010, 04:57 PM
Most agents do insist on handling everything a writer writes, and your agent should have first refusal, but if teh contract says you can't submit a book she doesn't want to handle, get that clause removed immediately.

No book should have to die because any one agent doesn't want to handle it. When an agent says no to a book, the writer should have the right to then send that book wherever he wishes, whenever he wishes.

03-30-2010, 05:02 PM
My agent contracts have always excluded nonfiction, at my request.


03-31-2010, 12:17 PM
I think I'm confused too--if I were on the receiving end of your proposal, I'd be expecting to deal with said agent. If that agent isn't representing your project, then mentioning having an agent would be a moot point as you wouldn't actually be agented on that project. In a way, that would seem to make it look worse as it would admit that your agent wasn't interested in it, thus, why should the publisher be?

Wayne K
03-31-2010, 04:10 PM
My agent only does true crime non fiction, and this is a How-to. I'm going to send it to him, I'm just wondering what to say if he's not interested.

I read my contract, and there's nothing about anything further than the book we have out. I'm going to send him an e-mail and ask.

Thank you all for your responses