Thursday, January 25, 2007

I Know What Walrus Do!

But it didn't take me all this time to find out. I have been busy with preparing for the agent search. To get it out of the way, Walrus do the same thing winter and summer. No winter vac in Cabo San Lucas for them. They stay in Alaska and keep the ice warm. There, now we both know. LOL
I have been working steadily finishing up the interminable rewrites and making submittal packets for agents. This whole "finding an agent" is the most irritating and complex process. Finding a lifetime mate is way easier than this. I have bought Jaguar cars in less time than it takes to make up one agent submittal.
In case you aren't a writer, I will fill you in on the process and each agent that you apply for has a slight or major variation on the theme.
First you write your book...if it is fiction use this set of rules..non-fiction has another whole set of rules.
When you at last think it is ready for publication, you find an agent.
Agents will allow you to pay them 15% of your book deal after:
1. They agree that they may want to represent you, and how do they determine that? First you have to search them out in Writers Digest or other directories. Then you must determine if they are looking for a new client. Then does that agent want a client that writes the kind of stuff that you write, if they do both...then you send them a query letter..not any old business letter stating that you write and have book ready to go and you will pay them 15%. No, that is not how it goes, the letter must be formatted in a certain manner. One page, single spaced, approved font, a certain size, with author bio, short synopsis of story, why you think this particular agent will be a good deal with your work and perhaps what famous author you have the audacity to compare yourself to. Okay, now we are cooking with gas, you say, hah, we aren't even one third finished. Next, you get to create a longer synopsis, disregarding that in your query letter you have already devoted a closely written paragraph to the synopsis. I will not create one longer than one page, though I have seen recommendations of one page per chapter. Whew, then you get to make a copy of your manuscript, ranging anywhere from the first two pages to the first 50 pages. Each agent has their own requirement on that. Then just add a SASE and you are ready to go.
One of my submissions weighs just over a pound. Okay, now multiply all that by the 26 agents that I am submitting to and you see why this is such a formidable task. The absolute capper on all this agenting business is that the author then patiently waits while someone at the agency reads all that paper and decides if you are fit to represent. Many agents advise in their brochures to not worry about receiving an answer from them for around ten weeks.
The whole process is insane. I want to join the walrus and keep an ice floe warm.
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