View Full Version : Can I submit?

10-17-2012, 01:24 PM
I have an agent but my contract will not be renewed with her due to personal issues on her end. In fact she will be closing her doors for a while. We have been in contract for two months. It ends in one month. She has been submitting but with no responses.
When the contract ends, can I submit the same book to agents? Do I state the book was previously agented? She will be giving me a list of publishers/editors she sent the submissions too.
I really want to get an agent for this book but I am worried it'll be 'damaged goods.'

10-17-2012, 01:29 PM
It is going to depend on how many publishers the book has been subbed to. If it is only a few, then yes there is a reasonable chance another agent may take it on. If most of the possible markets have been used up then you'll need something else to tempt another agent with. In the case where there have not been responses yet, you probably need to get your agent to withdraw the manuscript

10-17-2012, 01:35 PM
Make sure you get a list of who she sent it to - publisher, specific editor and date.

10-17-2012, 02:43 PM
Check your contract. I'm not sure how things work in Australia, but in the US, there's often a contractual waiting period from contract termination until you're allowed to find a new agent. Even after that time, there's another waiting period in which you still owe the former agent her commission if the book sells to one of the editors she's subbed to.

You MUST tell any new agent the novel's submission history. They won't be able to resubmit to the editors your former agent has sent the book. Not telling an agent about the submission history can lead to overlap, which will either upset the editors (and thus your agent) or possibly result in a sale to an editor your former agent sent the book to, and then you might owe both agents a commission.

10-17-2012, 03:26 PM
She is based in the US. She is in a delicate position so I hate bugging her with emails. I checked the contract. There is a 30 day warning period Of termination which she gave me two weeks ago. It says nothing of a waiting period. It does mention that if I sell my book to a publisher she originally submitted to she does require commission, though it doesn't say for how long.

Is it the same deal with publishers? Woud they need to know the book's history?

10-17-2012, 03:27 PM
_ _ _ honesty is always the best policy, as they say. If you lie, or stretch the truth, there's a fair chance someone may catch on. Then you're screwed! G'luck.

10-17-2012, 03:59 PM
Publishers only care if a book's already been sold or published before they see it. Agents need to know the submission history to avoid duplicating submissions your former agent has already made.

10-19-2012, 12:29 AM
Thanks for all your help. Would a publisher consider the novel over one that hasn't had an agent? I mentioned to one it was agented.

10-19-2012, 01:40 AM
First, I'd just wait the 2 weeks or however long it is until the 30 day period is over. Then there's no question.

Thanks for all your help. Would a publisher consider the novel over one that hasn't had an agent? I mentioned to one it was agented.

As everything - it depends. Mostly on the publisher. To some it won't matter at all. To others, it's a deal breaker. Explain what happened ASAP, then act on the publisher's recommendations.

If you must find another agent, some publisher's may have provided a form of documentation about their interests; these are sometimes called emails. :) And agents tend to prioritize the review of the work of authors who have a publisher in the wings.

10-19-2012, 02:50 AM
Thanks for all your help. Would a publisher consider the novel over one that hasn't had an agent? I mentioned to one it was agented.
Are you asking whether having been agented would make the publisher regard the novel more favorably? If so, the answer is no. Publishers consider books on their merits, and the fact that a book was previously agented has no bearing on that. A reputable agent may have thought the book was good enough to represent, but a publisher only cares what it thinks of the book.

A publisher doesn't need to know a book's history, unless it has previously been published. An agent, on the other hand, does need to know--because, as others have said above, she doesn't want to duplicate submissions already made by another agent.

- Victoria