The first agent I submitted to

(65 Posts)
LongGoneBeforeDaylight Tue 27-Aug-13 23:32:14

Has requested the full manuscript. It's an enormous agency too. Sent it last week. Hand holding please while I wait?

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 28-Aug-13 08:13:05

Brilliant, congratulations!
Fingers crossed.

What genre is it?

LongGoneBeforeDaylight Wed 28-Aug-13 09:04:11

Women's commercial fiction smile

Summerhasloaded Wed 28-Aug-13 09:08:04

Ooh grin Good luck!

Poledra Wed 28-Aug-13 09:22:41

Fabulous. Remember, you promised I could live vicariously through you, so it's my thrill too grin

LongGoneBeforeDaylight Wed 28-Aug-13 09:22:57

Does anyone have experience of this? Are they likely to call or email if they like it? I am currently obsessively checking email and phone!

Yonihadtoask Wed 28-Aug-13 09:27:00

wow! fingers crossed for you!

aftermay Wed 28-Aug-13 09:33:13

Congratulations! Not my kind of book but there are plenty of readers out there. Have you got the full story at this stage?

LongGoneBeforeDaylight Wed 28-Aug-13 09:35:58

Poledra grin

I hope it's between lit fic and chick lit but perhaps I am delusional...

LongGoneBeforeDaylight Wed 28-Aug-13 09:36:37

Aftermay yes it's all done and with the agent. Weird feeling, am bereft now!

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 28-Aug-13 09:43:56

You might or might not get a quick response now. It could be today, it could be months. If I were you I would keep subbing it to more, even if this is your first choice agency. Then if they don't like it after all you won't feel so crushed, or if they don't reply but you get an offer of rep from someone else you can contact this agency and tell them you've had an offer from someone else which might spur them on to a quicker decision.

I think the most common thing if they want to take it further is to email to arrange a time for a phone call. There do seem to be a few agencies that operate a 'no answer means no' policy even on fulls but this is pretty rare - you should expect to hear something.

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 28-Aug-13 09:44:50

Are you working on your next book? I guess you can't have had time to get very far with it if this is the first agent you've submitted to grin

LongGoneBeforeDaylight Wed 28-Aug-13 09:49:13

The agent ('s assistant, I think) has said they will read it this week, EEK. They also said the person whose list it is is away for two weeks so it may be a while (presumably if the first agent likes it?).

Yes trying to start new book, have an idea, but basically keep opening other novel and finding typos.

Yes should submit to others too, that is one of today's tasks!

thoughtsandall Wed 28-Aug-13 14:07:50

Congrats- everything that is crossible is crossed for you. Keep us posted

GrendelsMum Sat 31-Aug-13 10:43:20


SirRaymondClench Tue 24-Sep-13 12:22:06

Any news Daylight?

BigPawsBrown Thu 26-Sep-13 02:56:25

It's me under a new name. No news. Don't know if that is good or bad? I am hopeful that the assistant liked it and it's now in her superior's To Read pile. She said she would read it "now" in August so she hasn't rejected me yet... smile

SirRaymondClench Thu 26-Sep-13 07:56:05

I am keeping everything crossed for you!
Are you allowed to ask whats happening or is that considered bad form?

BigPawsBrown Thu 26-Sep-13 13:15:19

Think you have to wait 3 months before chasing up a request for the full. Sigh!

SirRaymondClench Thu 26-Sep-13 13:36:02

I have no patience! I will probably self publish I think.
3 months would kill me but as they say, no news is good news!

TunipTheUnconquerable Thu 26-Sep-13 14:00:15

Have you done lots more subs since then?
Is next novel going well?

StillNoFuckingEyeDeer Thu 26-Sep-13 14:07:38

Waiting for a response must be torture. At least with exams you know when the results are coming out. I hope you hear soon (and it's good news!)

LaVitaBellissima Thu 26-Sep-13 14:09:23

Good luck, sending positive vibes

MooncupGoddess Thu 26-Sep-13 14:14:29

I'd try a quick, polite chase a month after sending, I think... nothing to lose and it's easy for manuscripts to get buried in to-do piles.

BigPawsBrown Thu 26-Sep-13 23:07:09

Ooh right, in that case I guess I can chase though three months does seen to be the advised time. The agent is quite busy and high profile.

Yes subbed to 12 more since grin

BigPawsBrown Fri 18-Oct-13 18:07:23

The full manuscript just got rejected. Am beyond devastated sad

Mintyy Fri 18-Oct-13 18:14:10

Oh I'm sorry about the rejection (but you will really need to toughen up, to be beyond devastated at your first rejection doesn't bode well).

Meant kindly.

BigPawsBrown Fri 18-Oct-13 18:16:02

I know - it's not my first now. I've submitted to 14 subsequent agents and had one form rejection and three nice ones. This was however the first rejection of my full manuscript and nobody else has requested the full, which I think is where devastation lies! Also I agree with her criticisms...

TunipTheUnconquerable Fri 18-Oct-13 20:56:31

Can you fix them?

Sorry to hear you're devastated. Keep at it!

BigPawsBrown Fri 18-Oct-13 23:17:18

Yes I think so. One is a bit vague but some very specific stuff too smile

TunipTheUnconquerable Sat 19-Oct-13 11:37:49

That's great then. If you are certain they are good advice, fix them and try her again.
Obviously if you've talked yourself into believing she was going to be the one, it will be hard to take, but actually it's very good news. She thinks it's good enough to take the trouble to tell you what's wrong, and her advice will enable you to make it better thus increasing your chances with others.
Most people I know who are published didn't have a smooth path to publication. One of my online writing group friends recently was about to give up because she'd queried all the agents, and then she got a reply from a small publisher she'd almost forgotten submitting to, and her book is coming out in the next few days smile

bunnybing Sat 19-Oct-13 13:38:09

Oh bum. To look on the positive side you've been given a free critique which you can use to do a rewrite.

I had this twice when I submitted my last novel - ie two agents wanted to see the whole thing having liked the 1st 3 chapters, followed by 2 rejections. I did find their criticisms mostly useful.

The thing is my current novel has got nowhere - have submitted to quite a few agents, just had standard rejections. Trouble is I'm convinced this novel is better than the last... (yes am aware I may be deluded).

BigPawsBrown Sat 19-Oct-13 14:52:17

It's so difficult to know isn't it! I have lost all judgment about what is good or bad about my novel. I was worried, for example, that the voices (dual narrative) weren't believable but she specifically said they were (and that I write fluently and engagingly grin )

What happened with your first novel in the end? The thought of a complete re-write has me pale to be honest but I think it needs to be longer (is 60,000) and she has helped me see where to add to it.

TunipTheUnconquerable Sat 19-Oct-13 18:31:12

Bunnybing, maybe your current one is better but less saleable.

bunnybing Sat 19-Oct-13 20:17:32

The first novel is still unpublished! The second of the agents recommended I send it to a lit consultancy to have it looked at but at the time I didn't want to pay out £££ for something that may well have amounted to nothing anyway.

Tunip, agree that could be possible.

ninah Sun 20-Oct-13 11:11:14

It's horrible. I had similar - next day response from first agent, sent ms, did a rewrite and it was rejected second time around. I tell myself if the qualities of rejection are improving so much it can't be long ... grin

BigPawsBrown Sun 20-Oct-13 12:20:20

I fell myself that too! I have had three rejections (two rejecting first three chapters and one rejecting full ms) but they were all helpful and not form rejections and one was regretful.

ninah Sun 20-Oct-13 12:54:14

there you are then. One yes is all it takes - keep believing in yourself.

BigPawsBrown Wed 23-Oct-13 23:55:42

An agent wants to see me. We're meeting next week!

TunipTheUnconquerable Thu 24-Oct-13 09:01:48

grin grin grin


ninah Thu 24-Oct-13 20:30:01

exactly! wonderful news

BigPawsBrown Sat 26-Oct-13 23:17:21

She has however said that she doesn't think my novel is 'big enough' for a debut but wants to discuss this and any other projects I have. Any idea whether this is likely to be a casual chat and an invitation for me to send her what I write next or an actual offer? I thought a meeting was generally a good sign but she doesn't seem to think my book will make it!

ninah Sat 26-Oct-13 23:51:02

big enough
well that's helpful! hmm
Who knows what agents are after?! Not even God. I do think a meeting is a very good sign though. Please update!

BigPawsBrown Sat 26-Oct-13 23:58:21

I will. It's on Thursday grin

TunipTheUnconquerable Sun 27-Oct-13 21:11:54

This blogpost might be helpful.

It's really hard to second guess. Maybe she will have ideas on how to make it bigger. Maybe she is hoping you have another one up your sleeve to show her. It will be a really useful meeting for you, whatever happens. (And if she did offer you representation there and then obviously that would be fantastic, but it's not the only good possible outcome.)

Good luck x

BigPawsBrown Sun 27-Oct-13 22:47:36

Thanks, that article is really useful. I will let you know how it goes! She did say, "I'm not sure this book is big enough to get you your first publishing deal - do you have any other ideas?" So sounds more like that than rewriting my current book.

GrendelsMum Mon 28-Oct-13 18:28:45

Looking forward to hearing what happens at the meeting, Big Paws.

I've now submitted mine to an agent, so we'll see what happens.

I'm going to set up a spreadsheet to track submissions and rejections, so I hope that's not unduly negative.

BigPawsBrown Mon 28-Oct-13 19:08:02

I have a spreadsheet too. It's great as you know when to chase and who you've already subbed to. I colour them red for rejections and green for requests for fulls smile

GrendelsMum Wed 30-Oct-13 17:10:43

Best of luck for tomorrow smile
The agent has requested a full, so that's a green stripe in the spreadsheet!

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 30-Oct-13 17:13:54

Best of luck, BigPaws. I'm looking forward to hearing how it goes.

GrendelsMum, are you submitting any more?

GrendelsMum Wed 30-Oct-13 18:02:20

Mmm - not sure. Might start identifying a key list of people to target via the list you recommended.

I've submitted to one other so far. Do you think I should go for more at the same time?

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 30-Oct-13 18:25:49

I think normal practice these days is to do it in batches of half a dozen or so. I have only seen one this time round that expects exclusive submissions.

BigPawsBrown Wed 30-Oct-13 19:30:08

She's postponed the meeting to nov 12th!! She had good reasons though...

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 30-Oct-13 20:22:15

Oh, that's a bit frustrating.

GrendelsMum Thu 31-Oct-13 10:55:07

Doesn't she know we're waiting!

I've gone ahead and spent the morning submitting to a few more agents, so it's now with 5 people.

TunipTheUnconquerable Thu 31-Oct-13 11:47:00

Good luck with all of them.
I don't want to go public with where I am with mine, but will update when I have definite news.

GrendelsMum Thu 31-Oct-13 11:50:12

Very sensible - fingers crossed...

TunipTheUnconquerable Tue 12-Nov-13 09:02:01

Keeping fingers crossed for you today, BigPaws.

BigPawsBrown Tue 12-Nov-13 12:14:43

Thank you! Very nervous!!

BigPawsBrown Wed 13-Nov-13 00:45:02

It was good, but I don't have an agent out of it. She was so, so nice about my writing and I need to work on plot. She would like to see a revision or the next thing I write...

ninah Wed 13-Nov-13 07:15:43

Excellent! did she give you pointers to revise to? I've had this a lot lately, rewrote for one agent and it still not right, now another one has said would be interested in rewrite but I can't face it just yet. Have some reader feedback coming soon, hopefully that'll help!
Did you have lunch? I've always wanted to say 'lunch with my agent'!

TunipTheUnconquerable Wed 13-Nov-13 09:10:22

Oh wow, it sounds like you are almost there! If an agent says nice things about your writing and is prepared to put the time in to the extent of asking you for a meeting, you have to take that seriously. It never happens to 99% of aspiring writers!
So, what are your plans for working on plot? I learnt a lot from 'Plot and structure' by James Scott Bell, and recently, from 'The Anatomy of Story' by John Truby.

BigPawsBrown Fri 15-Nov-13 00:45:00

Yes I've been doing a lot of thinking. My idea for a second novel has a better concept and I have spent two hours tonight with my dad, who is very imaginative, coming up with different plot threads. Really pleased with it and there is so much more going on than in my first book. I want to write this one and send it to her. She did say she would be very excited to receive a book from me in the future smile

TunipTheUnconquerable Fri 15-Nov-13 15:12:00

Fantastic grin

It sounds like this whole process has been hugely useful in your development as a writer and when you come to sub the next one you'll be streets ahead of where you were this time - as well as this agent you'll have all the ones who said nice things about your book to target, you know what aspects of your writing to work on, you've got experience of the submissions process and will know how to emotionally pace yourself so it's not so draining, and above all you can write from a place of much greater confidence because you've had an actual agent who loves your writing so there is NO QUESTION about whether you can write smile

Best of luck with the next book & keep us posted!

BigPawsBrown Fri 15-Nov-13 19:06:51

Thank you so much! When you put it like that you are right... Just feels like a mountain to climb at the moment, must just keep at it!

She said I write a lot like David Nicholls, I nearly died grin

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