PDA

View Full Version : An intern looked at MS and liked it. Do I mention that to agent?



Belle_91
11-11-2016, 11:20 PM
Hello. So I participated in #p2p16 and had an intern at a literary agency look at my MS. She said a lot of very nice, complimentary things about my first five pages and query, but that ultimately, the project just wasn't for her. When I query an actual agent from that same agency she's an intern at, do I mention this? I don't want to do anything I'm not supposed to do. Thanks.

Mrs-Q
11-11-2016, 11:26 PM
I personally would not unless she referred you to the other agent ("... but I think so-and-so would love it! Go ahead and submit to her.").

The agents within an agency talk to one another. They'll recognize the manuscript. It's not an asset to you for them to know off the bat your project was rejected by anyone, let alone a co-worker.

Dennis E. Taylor
11-12-2016, 12:06 AM
I may be wrong, but isn't the food-chain something like: agent, associate agent, clerical, cleaning staff, rodentia, pondscum, things that eat pondscum, things that eat their waste, then interns?

I may be thinking of Grey's Anatomy.

Old Hack
11-12-2016, 12:20 AM
I may be wrong, but isn't the food-chain something like: agent, associate agent, clerical, cleaning staff, rodentia, pondscum, things that eat pondscum, things that eat their waste, then interns?

I may be thinking of Grey's Anatomy.

Not in literary agents, no.

Interns commonly do the first prune of the slush pile, and are very carefully briefed before they're let loose on it. They do a lot of valuable work for agencies.

Belle_91
11-12-2016, 12:45 AM
Not in literary agents, no.

Interns commonly do the first prune of the slush pile, and are very carefully briefed before they're let loose on it. They do a lot of valuable work for agencies.

So I do mention it then? Sorry but I'm still confused. Thanks for clearing up what interns at these agencies do.

ElaineA
11-12-2016, 01:19 AM
Belle, I don't mean to be obtuse, but what would you mention? Your intern read it and liked it, but she passed, so I thought you might like it? For me it's not really computing. The agent will have the same sets of documents the intern had. I'm not sure telling agent the intern liked them is helpful in any tangible way. The agent will decide for themself. Telling the agent the intern declined can't really be helpful either, IMO.

If you're confident in your submission package (and it sounds like you are, and with reason), sub it on its merits.

Cyia
11-12-2016, 01:27 AM
I know it's tempting to want to point out every positive response you get, but at the end of the day, the compliments ended with "No."

That's not a dig at you, or your work. It's simply how mentioning the intern's response will likely come off to an agent.

Either the agent will wonder why the intern passed, or they'll go straight to the intern and ask their opinion of the piece in question. Either way, the inquiry ends with the agent hearing the piece has already been rejected once by someone in their agency.

You're better off with a clean slate and no mention of the intern at all. There's no reason to risk tainting an agent's first taste of your work.

Good luck with it!

Belle_91
11-12-2016, 01:30 AM
okay. Thanks, y'all. Sorry if this was stupid.

Old Hack
11-12-2016, 02:35 AM
Belle, it wasn't stupid at all for you to ask a perfectly reasonable question! Don't worry about it. You're good.

Cyia
11-12-2016, 02:52 AM
Definitely not a stupid question. It's hard for all of us to resist the urge to include every compliment in hopes of a leg-up, but you did the smartest thing possible, which was to think of the consequences before you acted. That's proof of a professional mind-set.

You've hung out around here long enough that you've got a grasp of how things work; that's your greatest advantage. You'll do fine.