View Full Version : Another Agent's Publisher is Interested, What Do I Do?

08-04-2007, 05:22 AM
I'm so confused now. I posted last month that I had sent my first 10 queries out and an agent sent me two pages of revisions to my proposal and told me if she liked them she'd want to represent me. I made the changes but have not heard back from her (it's been about 1 month). This agent has a reputation here at AbsoluteWrite that is partially good and partially negative, but she seemed to understand my book when I spoke with her.

At the same time I queried her, I sent a query to another agent who told me he was too busy to represent the book, but he sent it to Entrepreneur Press to see what they thought (as a courtesy since I was referred by another of this agent's authors who was published by Entrepreneur). This agent has a very positive reputation here at AbsoluteWrite. Two months go by and now, he sends me a message asking if the manuscript is still available because Entrepreneur is interested. I just responded by telling him that the manuscript is still available although I did have interest from another agent, too.

Now what do I do? I'm completely new to this. I don't know how I should approach this situation.

Tish Davidson
08-04-2007, 07:03 AM
I would say get in touch with agent #1, tell her what has happened and ask her to make a decision about whether she wants to represent you. The biggest drawback I see in agent #2 is that he idoesn't sound like he going to shop the book around for the best deal. He sent it one place and they are interested. He'll take his cut from this deal, but is the deal with EP the best he can do or is it just a quick and easy sale for him? What happens if EP doesn't want it after they see the full ms? Will you have his full attention or will he still be "too busy" to try to sell the book somewhere else?

The bottom line is that you want an agent that has very good connections for your type of book, but also one who believes in the book and believes in you as an author of future books and that you are comfortable with. If a publisher really wants your book, they'll still want it even if it is represented by agent #1. I'd tell #1 you need an answer and if she does want to represent you, I would ask what her plans for the book are (who is she going to send it to) before you sign with her. You could also ask #2 what happens if EP doesn't want the book. Is he done with it, or will he represent you and send it elsewhere. You need more information before you move forward.

08-04-2007, 07:45 AM
I just got a response back from agent #2. He said he wants the full manuscript to give to EP. If EP makes an offer, he said he'll shop it around elsewhere to see if he can get a better deal.

Lauri B
08-04-2007, 03:12 PM
Hi Tripletsmom,
So still do wht Trish says: contact Agent #1 and update her on what's happening. If she says she does want to rep the book (which I would imagine is likely), you'll have to decide whether to go with her, or Agent #2. It's a nice problem to have.

Bo Sullivan
08-04-2007, 03:19 PM
I wish I was in your situation! I sent out eight queries last week and go my first rejection slip this morning!

08-06-2007, 02:37 AM
I agree you should contact agent #1 and tell her what's going on. I'd also be concerned about agent #2. He seems to be saying that if EP doesn't make an offer, he's done working for you.

08-06-2007, 06:54 PM
You're right. Agent #2 doesn't seem to really believe in my book like the first agent does, but agent#1's reputation is not as good as agent #2's reputation. Should I care about that or just go with the agent who seems to understand and believe in my book?

Of course, they could both say no in the end, but I want to have my research done in the hopes that all goes well. :)

Susan B
08-06-2007, 07:18 PM
First, congratulations on having interest in your book!

I have another thought to add. Maybe I'm overly concerned about your mention of the "partly negative" reputation of Agent #1, but I wanted to raise this.

I'm guessing it's more than simply Agent #1 being newer than Agent #2, and/or having fewer sales. If that's so, and people have had other concerns, I'd be very cautious. I think it's too early in the process to settle for an agent about whom you have reservations.

(Maybe it reminds me too much of my own experience, when I was just starting the query process. Got expression of interest, plus a request for revisions from a potential agent who gave me a funny feeling. I checked on AW and discovered a thread on the agent where a lot of reservations were expressed. Very glad I moved on and eventually found a solid agent.)

Good luck!


08-06-2007, 07:46 PM
Susan makes a great point. I also passed on a couple of agents that didn't feel right for various reasons before I even had another offer on the table.
Really look at what the concerns are before you decide.

It doesn't sound like you have much of a choice with agent #2, ie if EP passess, he will, too. What about sending out more queries to agents you know you'd like to have represent you while you're waiting to hear from agent #2? You are not bound to exclusivity until he actually signs you. In the meantime, it could take EP months and months to decide, they might eventually say no, and then your only choice is agent #1 and you've lost all that potential query time.

Of course, once other agents request your proposal, you should tell them about the other interest you have from another agent. That's a good thing. It'll make them get back to you more quickly. Also put in your query that EP has expressed interest and is reading the full. That should also get you to the top of the pile.

Susan B
08-06-2007, 08:17 PM
Great suggestions in the post above by Prevostprincess!