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alaktas
03-07-2016, 04:50 AM
Hello,

For American writers who have written a novel, I wonder if it is wise/advisable to submit to literary agents/publishers in the UK?
Any thoughts on this? Has anyone had any experience doing this? Is it wise/advisable to do for those who have had no luck in securing an agent/publisher here in the USA?

Thanks!

James D. Macdonald
03-07-2016, 06:36 AM
I'm not 100% sure this is a BR&BC question. While waiting for Cao to figure out where it goes ...

Recall that the UK market is smaller than the US market. Does your book have British appeal? Is there a particular UK publisher you would like to see with your book?

The general solution to being unable to find a US agent is to write a new, different, better book and try again with it.

ctripp
03-07-2016, 03:45 PM
One thing you might research is, do many or most UK Publishers receive publishing grants based on their using UK Authors? This could cause an Agent in the UK to worry about the limited number of UK Publishers they could sub your book to.
In Canada Publishers receive a number of hefty gov grants but they must publish Canadian Authors to qualify for them. I believe Australia has this same system if not mistaken.

Old Hack
03-07-2016, 04:05 PM
OP, if you can't find an agent in the US and you're based in the US, you would probably be wise to do as James suggests and write a new and better book. While you could find a UK agent you'll kick yourself: the US is a much larger market, and your agent would get a higher commission on non-domestic sales--so you'd end up paying her a higher amount on all US sales.


One thing you might research is, do many or most UK Publishers receive publishing grants based on their using UK Authors? This could cause an Agent in the UK to worry about the limited number of UK Publishers they could sub your book to.

It's not an issue. Grants are rarely given, and when they are they are usually only given to small publishers, which would not appear on agents' radars.


In Canada Publishers receive a number of hefty gov grants but they must publish Canadian Authors to qualify for them. I believe Australia has this same system if not mistaken.

It's usually only the smaller publishers, or niche publishers, which receive those grants. But they're great, aren't they?

mirandashell
03-07-2016, 05:22 PM
Speaking as a Brit who also can't get her work published, my initial reaction is 'bugger off and play in your own yard'.

It's even harder here as it's a much smaller market. Like the others have said, either keep trying or write a more marketable book.

Earthling
03-07-2016, 05:26 PM
I live in the UK and I quickly realised I wanted a US agent. There are many reasons which I won't go into here, but ultimately I felt my book was more likely to be placed in the US.

When I was researching UK agents, a few of them had notes on their submission guidelines saying UK-only or expressing a strong preference for UK authors to submit. I imagine more of them share that attitude but don't display it on their websites. On the flip side, no US agents seem to have a problem taking on international authors.

Unless there's a reason you think your book will be easier to sell by a UK agent, I'd stick with ones in the US.

waylander
03-07-2016, 07:16 PM
Well you can - many UK agents have clients from all over the globe - but why? The market is smaller and there are fewer agents, and many UK imprints buy direct from US agents.

Jamesaritchie
03-07-2016, 11:11 PM
My agent always handles that sort of thing, but I know writers who submit their own books to overseas publishers. Like anything else, sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn't. It depends more on the book than on anything else. The one rule in publishing that never fails is the rule of the dollar sign. If a publisher anywhere sees dollar signs when they read your book, they will release it.

alaktas
03-09-2016, 05:43 PM
I appreciate all the comments. Thanks.

Cyia
03-09-2016, 06:06 PM
When I was querying, I queried UK agents as well as US ones, and got requests, so it is possible for a US author to have an overseas agent, but definitely consider the issue of commission for domestic vs international. If your agent is based in the UK, then your "domestic" will be the UK, even if you live in the US.

hester
03-09-2016, 06:49 PM
Bear in mind that there are UK agents affiliated with US agencies--those agents would likely have the connections with US publishing houses (as well as houses abroad) to insure wide exposure. This may not be what you're asking, but I figured I'd put it out there :).

WeaselFire
03-10-2016, 10:01 PM
Is it wise/advisable to do for those who have had no luck in securing an agent/publisher here in the USA?

No. British agents and publishers no different than US publishers and agents. Or Chinese, Korean, Russian or Mexican for that matter. If it's not something they can sell, they don't want it. You submit to foreign agents and publishers when what you produce is more suited to their specific wants and needs than it is for US agents and publishers.

Jeff

Erin Latimer
03-17-2016, 10:00 PM
I submitted to both UK and US agents, since I knew the "voice" of my story was suited for either. I ended up with offers in both the US and UK and ultimately it was down to which agent I thought had the best vision/was most enthusiastic. I signed with an agent from the UK and couldn't be happier. That said, don't sub to UK agents because you have "no luck" with you novel, write a new one. If you sub to UK agents as well, it should be a calculated decision because of what you've written.