1. J♥Star
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    J♥Star Member

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    Is it easier to get older books published once you got your foot in the door?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by J♥Star, May 4, 2012.

    Let’s assume that I have written 5 complete novels, and none of them have gotten an agents attention. However after writing my 6th novel, I managed to get an agent, and they find a publisher to publish my book. Once this is done, would it be easier to get those 5 previous books published (or some of them)?
    The reason I ask this question is because I always hear how hard it is to get an agents attention, and it seems like sometimes people have great books that just don’t get the attention of an agent. But once you got their attention with another of your works, it seems like they might be more willing to give your previous work a chance. Would this be a wrong assumption, or do agents in a way only represent you for one book, and once they are done making the sell you move on? I would almost assume that once an agent chooses to represent you that you can just call them up or e-mail and ask them questions or present your ideas without having to go through the query letter process again, but I have never had a chance to experience this so I don’t know.

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  2. Cogito
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    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    If you are continually learning and improving -- and you should be -- your older novels won't be up to the standard of quality of the accepted one. So assume you will have some work to do on those older pieces before they will be acceptable.

    Also, I would probably wait until the agent has managed to sell the first novel to a publisher, or at least a few months, before approaching the agent with a second manuscript. If it has sold, you're in a good position to approach the agent with another manuscript. If the first one isn't getting picked up, your "new" manuscript needs to be better than the first - make sure it is!
  3. J♥Star
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    J♥Star Member

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    This makes sense. I guess its almost like those old reports i wrote years ago, and i am almost embarrassed at how bad they were ><
  4. The-Joker
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    The-Joker New Member Contributor

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    If you truly feel your older manuscripts are up to scratch and can withstand the scrutiny of the publishing world then by all means approach your agent. Books get overlooked for all manner of reasons, even some marketable ones I think. If you have a good agent who loves your current manuscript, and you have a good working relationship, then the agent shouldn't mind reading through another manuscript, as long as you think it's in the best shape it can be. The agent would then give specific and relevant feedback so you can whip the novel into even better shape. This can be done before your first novel sells. But again it depends on your relationship and your confidence in the older manuscript.

    But the short answer is yes, having an agent definitely opens up new opportunities for older manuscripts if they're marketable.
  5. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Senior Member Contributor

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    If you've built an audience and earned money for the publisher, they'll be interested in novels you have to offer. As others said, they'd need to be of solid quality.

    Also, some publishers specialize in certain genres, so if you write an action/thriller or two with success, and then have a romance you want to publish, you (or your agent) may have to seek out a different publisher. With a solid track record, this would be easier but not a sure thing.

    The trick is to get the first novels published and succeed with them. Sometimes the older works are too flawed to be fixed, other times not.

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