View Full Version : QUESTION: Small Publisher Requests MSS

03-27-2007, 05:50 AM
A small publishing company requested the manuscript of my children's chapter book, about 9000 words. I'm overjoyed. But I also have concerns. My query has generated a fair amount of interest. Three agents are currently reviewing the full MSS. A fourth agent requested an exclusive, but it's already out to the three. Now a small publisher wants to read the story. Here's my concern. What if the small publisher wants to buy it? I'm wondering if an agent could sell to a larger publisher. I know I'm jumping to huge conclusions, but I'm unpublished at this point except for a small magazine article I recently sold. I guess I just need a little sage advice. BTW, I intend to send the MSS to the small publisher with the understanding that one in hand is better than two in the bush.

03-27-2007, 07:52 AM
I would submit the manuscript (that is what you mean by "MSS," right?) to the small publisher, and not worry about any of this unless they offer to publish it. Also, if you granted the fourth agent an "almost-exclusive" (telling them that three other agents were already looking at it, but you wouldn't send it to anyone new) then obviously you need to wait to hear back from them before sending to the publisher. Good luck with whatever you decide to do!

James D. Macdonald
03-27-2007, 09:58 AM
If the small publisher wants to publish it, just tell them "My agent will get back with you." Then telephone the agent you'd most like to have represent you and tell him/her the situation.

Penguin Queen
03-27-2007, 01:13 PM
Congratulations first of all on all the interest your book is generating! :)

What James McD says sounds like a good idea. That way, you keep all your irons in the fire & maximise your chances of success. Let us know what happens!

03-29-2007, 12:13 AM
The first thing you should do is let the agents know about your situation-I had the same thing happen to me, a big literary agent requested part of my manuscript, and so did a very reputable publisher. I told the agent what was happening and he still wanted to see it. I would send in the manuscript, and then wait until you get a response from the publisher before you decide what to do.

Then, you can ask yourself: which agent (or publisher) will represent my novel the best? Do I want to go with a big publisher, or am I satisfied with a small publisher? Which agent am I most comfortable talking to? That sort of thing.

Good luck!!