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Jo Zebedee
02-16-2016, 05:26 PM
Hi, looking for advice. I don't have a new book complete (I'm working through an edit when I get a chance but I have three books with publishers between now and next year and those edits are slowing the process of a new book down.)

I think, though, I'm at the stage where I really, really need an agent. (I had one up to 18 months ago, when we parted ways amicably as she didn't rep the range of what I wrote.)

I have five books out/committed to. I've topped Amazon sf charts for both my books this year and have been listed as a Waterstones top 10 bestseller. I have a growing reputation and fan base, a well followed blog and have been mentioned for the Hugo and Campbell awards this year (plus a good facebook and twitter presence).

But! I've had to negotiate a publisher contract and audio rights on my trilogy without representation.I also have short work appearing in at least four anthologies this year, including one which is high profile from an established, and respected, small press.

I worry that I won't have anything new to sub until the back end of the summer and, knowing how long it took to snare an agent last time, that I'll be looking to sub that at the same time as having publisher homes* for it and then I'll end up in a confused mess.

*At this stage, three are interested in seeing it and I'm confident two might offer on it, depending on the quality of the book, of course (but it's on a par with my other work, at least). But they're all small presses and I'm not sure if I should be aiming for someone bigger, or establishing myself in the small press market. I desperately, desperately need bespoke guidance.
So, my question is if it is okay to sub to agents without having new work. Is there an etiquette around approaching and saying 'here is where I am, are you interested?'

Old Hack
02-16-2016, 09:16 PM
I would wait until you have your next book done. I know it's tempting not to wait, and I can see you have a great backlist: but agents need to know what they're going to be able to have a crack at selling for you, and if you don't have a book to show them they won't be able to know that.

Jo Zebedee
02-17-2016, 12:19 AM
I would wait until you have your next book done. I know it's tempting not to wait, and I can see you have a great backlist: but agents need to know what they're going to be able to have a crack at selling for you, and if you don't have a book to show them they won't be able to know that.

Thank you! Head down, then. :)

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I would wait until you have your next book done. I know it's tempting not to wait, and I can see you have a great backlist: but agents need to know what they're going to be able to have a crack at selling for you, and if you don't have a book to show them they won't be able to know that.

Thank you! Head down, then. :)