Category Archives: Agents

Literary Agents are not Publishers

Thought I was feeling better so I went back to work today. Such a bad idea.

I was fine until lunch then I just couldn’t keep my eyes open. Desperate for a nap, I popped home in a taxi for what I thought would be an hour snooze.  I woke up at 3.30 from the phone ringing. It was BigEyes and she was having some sort of melt down because some random was told that we’d publish their book, and they called to find if it would be out by Christmas. Continue reading

Knowing the industry

We waited all day yesterday for Giles. Around 3pm I asked the Intern to text him. In fairness, she was none too please with him as she was supposed to have left hours earlier. I told her that if she needed to leave for class that was fine, but she insisted on staying. Giles finally texted back that he wasn’t coming over to Dundee, and that he’d be in sometime during the week. Continue reading

An agent and her reputation

HP was still up playing on that game. I was hoping he’d come to bed and I’d try my sexy on again. So, I waited and waited, and finally got a bit fed up, tip-toed into the lounge to find him asleep on the sofa, the game still on, and the controller in hand.

I’ve left him in there to sleep.

So, since I’m wide awake I’ll fill everyone on my Monday meetings.

I met with London and Paris and we had such a great chat. They’re doing well, and their business is getting off the ground. And, oh, and they are suing Giles. They asked me to keep it all confidential, and while I’m usually a spill-all kind of blogger, in this instance I should probably keep it zipped. I don’t want to jeopardise their suit. Also they begged me to come work for them. Okay, they didn’t beg. But they did say that if I ever changed my mind, I had a job at their place. Continue reading

My Mad Schedule

Just got some interesting additions to my calender.

Paris was supposed to go to the Frankfurt Book Fair and I would go to the World Publishing Expo. The Frankfurt Book Fair is much more our thing, as the World Publishing Expo is more newsy. However, as we’re dealing with more and more non-fiction titles and beginning to dable in representing authors who work in cross-platform media, we thought that this year we should go to both. However, Paris now can’t make it as her husband is away and there is no one to watch their daughter (the au pair has asked off for that week, and evidently some sort of nanny style drama is ensuing). Oh yeah, it has been a long time since I’ve blogged reguarly, so you don’t know about Paris. Paris met a guy in France and married him, and he has a daughter who lives with him, and now Paris is suddenly a mum. But the girl is super cute, and Paris’ husband is so hunky. He’s Swiss but has dark hair. Sexy and mysterious. Continue reading

Best time to submit

posting a letterAugust for anyone is the arts is a busy month, but for those of us in Scotland it’s bedlam. Book Festival, International Festival, Film Festival, and, of course The Fringe and all the Fringe related activities, including (but not limited to) the Whiskey Fringe. Yeah, you heard me right. The Whiskey Fringe. And yes, I like Whiskey now. It’s taken a while, but I’m all over that brown alcohol. Wait. That makes me sound like an alchy. Which I certainly am not. Anyway, rambling… Continue reading

The Secret Life of the Blogging Agent

I was having a chat with a friend who knows me in person and as a blogger and she asked why I’m so cagey about my identity. After all, that personal stuff I used to write about it now quite far in the past.

There are three reasons why I keep my anonymity: Continue reading

Stupid stupid data

I am the biggest fuck wit. Talked the crew into buying a proper database. One that we can record all kinds of stats on that we can gather from social media and other such junk, and then use to target specific readers. It will also help us keep track of our authors and royalties and payments and such. And it will help us keep track of our best performing publishers. Continue reading

How to get a literary agent without a finished manuscript

I was at asked to give a talk at a writing circle recently, and I happily obliged. Please forgive me if this sounds horrible, but those in attendance were of the same demographic I see at so many of these things: retired (or near it), mostly women, upper middle class, bored, know everything. Continue reading

Don’t big yourself up to agents. You’re not doing yourself any favours.

Guess what? Do not try to swindle an agent into representing you. Don’t falsify your Good Reads numbers and do not exaggerate that writing group at the library into the ‘Your Name Here’ Official Fan Club. It won’t work. Continue reading

Loose lips sink ships

Today, the moment I got into the office Loraine asked to speak with me. She had that severe look on her face. The last time I had seen that look, was about a month ago when she told me that she would be shutting down the Agency – in a month.

This is it, I thought. Despite all the hard work, how we’ve all pulled together as a team, the massive amount of income that had been generated in such a short period of time, this was it. She would be shutting down the Agency.

She sat me down at the kitchen table, and she began by telling me how much she appreciated my hard work. How much I’ve grown and learned in such a short period of time. Without my help she could have never had coped. That she appreciated everything…

That was it. I was waiting for the ‘but’. ‘But’ I’m closing down the Agency. ‘But’ this still hasn’t changed my mind. ‘But’ it’s still not enough money to pay all the bills, my house is being taken away from me, you’re a big failure.

But the ‘but’ never came.

Instead, she said, ‘You’ve done a lot to remind me why I love my job, and that even if the industry is changing, it doesn’t mean that I’m too old to keep up. That’s why, I’ve decided to keep the agency open.’

It hadn’t quite sunk in. What was she saying? That all was well? Was I correct in hearing that? After months of hard work, I wouldn’t be broke, unemployed and pregnant? Holy shit. Was I hearing this right?

Loraine could tell that I was a bit confused. She stopped, and said again, ‘I’ve decided to not shut down the Agency.’

I didn’t say anything.

‘I know what you’re thinking,’ she said.

I don’t think she did.

‘There’s been so many changes, how can you be sure I won’t change my mind?’ she said more like a statement than a question. She then said she was going to go ahead with the original plan (if it was okay with London, Paris and I) where we all pool our agent fees, and share in the costs. The last few months when London, Paris and I all worked together has proved that we can do this. She doesn’t think we should take on any new clients for awhile and really focus on pushing those we have. Then she said, ‘I’m going to take a slight step back, but I’d like to list you as full agent.’

It really wasn’t sinking in. An agent? Me? I have no idea what I was doing. Me? An agent?

I expressed my concern, but she waived my apprehension away by saying, ‘Don’t worry. You’ve proved yourself.’

She had spoken with London and Paris the evening before, and they were extremely happy with the situation. It was sinking in slowly, but I wasn’t quite there yet.

The afternoon was spent working on stuff for the US deal. Since they did a three book deal, they essentially bought a book that hasn’t yet been sold in the UK, so we had to do some editing.

Later in the day we’d heard from RRManager who’s sent us over figures and other rights aspects – such as merchandising, serialization and so forth. I was keen to keep Conspiracy out of it until we’d completely negotiated the entire deal. However, he specifically told us that he wanted final say in the script. I knew that was going to be tough negotiating, so I passed the whole thing on to London. She thinks we can get a certain level of control over the script, but not casting maybe casting. And final control will be difficult as it would mean that Conspiracy would have to be on set, as sometimes scripts change all the way up to shooting. London is in the processes of putting all this together.

Six o’clock rolled around, and it was time to leave the office, just like every other weekday for the last five months. It all felt so normal, despite the big changes. I had a job and the potential to make a lot more money as an agent. But, as is the way with life, nothing felt different yet. Maybe it was because, at home, sitting on my lounge floor was that pink and blue box. My period was quite late by this point, and I couldn’t ignore it any longer. With all the potential for change it was time for me to find out. It was the night.

I went to leave the office, but Loraine stopped me. ‘You know, with the film deal there may be a confidentiality agreement,’ she said.

‘I’ll talk to [Conspiracy] about it tomorrow,’ I said.

‘No. I’m talking about you. Loose lips sink ships,’ and with that she left the office and went into the front part of the house.

Shit!

I’ve been home for hours and I still haven’t taken the test. I can’t. I just can’t.