When it doesn't sell

Questions for the resident (former) agent
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dottie
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When it doesn't sell

Post by dottie » June 2nd, 2012, 2:37 pm

Hi Nathan,

Let's say your agent shopped your YA MS to a dozen big-6 imprints, and it had a few close calls--as in, editors tried to acquire but it didn't get through acquisitions. If your agent doesn't want to keep trying with another round of submissions and is reconsidering you as a client, what might a writer's options be?
Can you query/seek other representation for that same MS, or will agents consider it "tarnished goods" after already going to quite a few imprints?
Is targeting small publishers, with the agent or on your own, a good strategy?
Or better to let the relationship go, put the book on the backburner despite being *soclose,* and focus on the next project?

Thanks,
Deborah

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Nathan Bransford
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Re: When it doesn't sell

Post by Nathan Bransford » June 6th, 2012, 11:00 pm

dottie wrote:Hi Nathan,

Let's say your agent shopped your YA MS to a dozen big-6 imprints, and it had a few close calls--as in, editors tried to acquire but it didn't get through acquisitions. If your agent doesn't want to keep trying with another round of submissions and is reconsidering you as a client, what might a writer's options be?
Can you query/seek other representation for that same MS, or will agents consider it "tarnished goods" after already going to quite a few imprints?
Is targeting small publishers, with the agent or on your own, a good strategy?
Or better to let the relationship go, put the book on the backburner despite being *soclose,* and focus on the next project?

Thanks,
Deborah
Hi Deborah, the answer is.... all of the above. It's up to you. You wouldn't be damaged goods to another agent with that result, so if you no longer feel the agent believes in you that is an option. You could see if the agent would be willing ot submit to other publishers. Or you could focus on your next project if you like the idea and feel it will be better than you first.

There's no right answer. Trust your gut!

writersink
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Re: When it doesn't sell

Post by writersink » June 7th, 2012, 8:11 am

I just thought I'd weigh in something. The Harry Potter series went to 12 major publishers before it got sold to the 13th. Going to 6 publishers does not make you "damaged goods."

Mark.W.Carson
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Re: When it doesn't sell

Post by Mark.W.Carson » June 7th, 2012, 1:59 pm

Also, publishers are not gods. They are good at what they do most times, but they have been known to accept some flops and turn down some pretty big hits. Every major bestseller that didn't get sold on day 1 was rejected by a publisher somewhere.

dottie
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Re: When it doesn't sell

Post by dottie » June 10th, 2012, 10:59 am

Thanks for all the advice! I appreciate it.

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