Thursday, October 3, 2019

Dear O'Abby: Multiple agents offered. How do I choose?

Dear O'Abby,

I've been querying a new book for about six months and finally got some agents interested enough in it to schedule some calls.  I wasn't expecting it, but three of the four agents I talked to made offers of representation.

So now I have to choose which one to go with.  And I have no idea how to do that.  They're all good agents - I wouldn't have queried them if they weren't - and I would be happy to work with any of them.

Do you have any advice on how to handle this situation?



Dear Over-Agented,

Firstly, congratulations on having written a book that generates this kind of response.  This level of agent interest is a really positive sign!

I understand how difficult this decision is, but you're right - you have to make it.  And it's an important decision.  You are going to have to work with this agent very closely and you need to make sure your decision is a sound one.

In your calls with the agents I'm sure you talked to all of them about revisions and their plans for the book going forward.  Think hard about the comments made.  Which agent's vision for your book most aligned with your own?  Which revision suggestions really resonated with you?  This is always a good place to start.  If an agent's vision of what your book is differs from your own, it might point to problems down the track.

Think about other things you spoke about during the call.  Did the agent's communication style gel with you?  Did she explain her process when taking the book on submission?  Did she answer your questions in a way that satisfied you?

If you've got that far through and you still don't have a preference, look at the larger picture.  Does the agent work for a larger agency which will support her when her workload is large?  What books has she already sold?  Is she just starting out on her agenting career or is she experienced?  If she's new, does she have a more experienced agent mentoring or supporting her?

And don't be afraid to reach out to any of these agents other clients to ask about working with them.  If she's a good agent, she has nothing to fear from you doing this and it's an excellent way to learn from someone who is already working with them whether she responds promptly to emails or if she's good at hand-holding during nerve-wracking moments.

At the end of the day, it's decision you have to make and be happy with.  Don't ignore your gut feelings, but do your due diligence as well.  If you're lucky, this will be a long and successful relationship!

Good luck!

X O'Abby

1 comment:

  1. Hey, congratulations! What a wonderful dilemma to have to solve. Keep us posted on your decision.


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