1. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    Agent Rejections, positive?

    Discussion in 'Traditional Publishing' started by texshelters, Apr 14, 2017.

    Is it ok to reply to apparently positive agent rejections with: read my whole book, you might change your mind? Nope, I haven't. Peace, JT
     
  2. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Staff Contributor

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    Not if you want anyone at that agency to ever give you the time of day again, no. Agents really hate that. And if they're really vindictive they'll enter your name into their super secret blacklist and circulate it throughout the industry :D Kidding there, but I heard they used to do that a few decades ago when writers were still submitting via snail-nail.
     
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  3. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    Sure. Did an agent tell you that, did you read it, or are you an agent? What's your source? Part of me wants to call them out, "Well, if you really like it..." because I assume they are lying. And no, I haven't done that.
    Peace, Tex
     
  4. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    I think you may be over-emphasizing the "apparently positive" side of the message and under-emphasizing the "rejection" part. If they wanted to read more of your book, they would have asked for more of it.

    Peace, Bay
     
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  5. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Staff Contributor

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    When an agent is done with you they are done. That's up there with death and taxes.

    ETA: agents like things they reject. They only care about what they think they can sell. Whether they enjoy the book or not is irrelevant unfortunately.
     
  6. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    I think that all this will do is ensure that they will remember, if and when you submit something else to them, that you don't respect their decisions or their work process.
     
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  7. Laurin Kelly

    Laurin Kelly Contributor Contributor

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    Exactly - no means no. No does not mean, "but if you just read the rest of my book no would mean yes!" No is a complete sentence.

    Please do not respond to the agent with anything but a thank you for their time and consideration. You have nothing to lose by being gracious and everything to lose by being argumentative and confrontational.
     
  8. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man or BayView

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    Here's what a few agents think:











    I can't balance this with tweets inviting authors to respond to rejections because, well, those tweets don't exist.
     
  9. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll It's Coffee O'clock everywhere. Contributor

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    As a private contractor, no means no. So it is the same for any profession.
    When my first book got rejected twice, I kept them and then
    trying to write the second better. Not trying to look like a whiny
    loser by telling them it was good, which would probably end
    in the same result. And they would probably never accept another
    submission from again.

    Moral of the story. Use it to motivate you to write another story,
    and try again. Or just epub it.
     
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  10. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    Exactly what I thought, but I had to ask. Thanks for the evidence! Peace, Tex
     
  11. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    Actually not. Note the word "apparent." That means there's doubt. Thanks. And duh! Of course they would ask.


    PTxS
     
  12. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    I wouldn't even send a thank you back. They don't have time for that either. PTxS
     
  13. texshelters

    texshelters Active Member

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    I was partly just sharing experience and seeing how others felt about these "friendly" rejections. The advice is a bit much, but thanks. I wasn't planning on jumping off the ledge, folks.

    So, all of you are agents? None of you can relate to this as writers?
     
  14. Homer Potvin

    Homer Potvin Get off my Balzac... Staff Contributor

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    Well, you asked an agent question and got an agent answer. Stop thinking like a writer, lol. That shit will get you nothing but a pile of words. I'm kidding but not really. The business is all about moving product. It could be designer shoes or glow in the dark dildos and the same logic would apply. I sympathize but nobody gives a shit about art. Nobody cares how hard you've worked. Write with an open mind but wear a cup and helmet before you try to sell it because the only thing they care about is money.
     
  15. BayView

    BayView Huh. Interesting. Contributor

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    Note the words "I think you may be". That means there's doubt. Thanks.

    And duh! If you already knew the answer, why'd you ask the question?
     
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  16. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll It's Coffee O'clock everywhere. Contributor

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    If agents are anything like publishers, then they are lazy salesmen (or shitty car salesmen) :p
    It doesn't matter how great your writing is, they really could give a shit less. They get so
    much crap in a slush pile that it would take an eternity to sift through it all. Some of it probably
    doesn't ever get seen before it flushed with the rest of the reject pile. They are skimming the
    ocean top, and jumping on the easiest thing they can market, and that does not mean that the
    story itself is actually good, just that they can slap it on a shelf and sell it. Quality is not their
    first concern over profit. So you just have to suck it up, and move on. And hope like hell you
    land somewhere near the surface and are just what they need to line their pockets on the
    next submission.
     
  17. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man or BayView

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    Agents and editors are, foremost, people who love books. Like us, they're really not in it for the (abysmal) pay.

    They're in business so they can't buy books that won't sell, but they absolutely do care about the quality and content of books. For a start, they have to read every manuscript they take on several times, and they can't skim-read. That's why they only take on books they love AND can sell.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
  18. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll It's Coffee O'clock everywhere. Contributor

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    I don't think I would ever get published, but that is because I have low self esteem and
    doubts of my own. :) Sure as hell haven't impressed anybody yet. :)
     
  19. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    But that's not remotely what you asked. If that's what you want, ask it.

    You asked if you should challenge the agent's decision. We said no. That doesn't mean that we can't "relate".
     
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  20. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    Because becoming a literary agent is a reliable path to billions.

    No. Just no. If agents didn't care, they'd use those skills in a more profitable industry.
     
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  21. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll It's Coffee O'clock everywhere. Contributor

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    Note the 'IF" in the first statement. I don't know what kind of volume their slush piles get to.
    Major Publishers get hundreds of thousands of submissions a year. Only like .001% acceptance rate.
    I don't know about agents, do they have to deal with such volumes in their slush piles?

    But you can't say that in either case that they do read every single submission they receive.
     
  22. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    What does the size of the slush pile have to do with the your assertion that they don't care about quality?
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
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  23. Cave Troll

    Cave Troll It's Coffee O'clock everywhere. Contributor

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    I was merely pointing out that more slush, can mean that not everything does get seen.


    "Because becoming a literary agent is a reliable path to billions.

    No. Just no. If agents didn't care, they'd use those skills in a more profitable industry."

    So by that assessment there is a bias, considering their personal preference when making
    a decision. It is solely based on their likes/dislikes. So that means you could be the greatest
    writer in the world, and if they happen to not like your submission out it goes. I think that
    is bias. Quality control by preference. This must be why their are more agents per capita
    than publishers both major and indie. Makes sense.

    (yes I did use exaggeration for part of this, but we all do from time to time)
     
  24. Tenderiser

    Tenderiser Not a man or BayView

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    Of course there is bias, mixed with the biases of the editors they sell to. I want an agent who is completely biased towards my work, and whose editor contacts are biased towards it as well. They'd be a pretty crap agent otherwise.

    I repeat - they have to read a manuscript, word for word, several times over the course of several months. Would you be willing to do that for a book that was just okay? Of all the books I've read in my life, I've re-read maybe 1% of them. Agents and editors take on the ones they are willing to read over and over again and passionately advocate to their contacts and colleagues.
     
  25. ChickenFreak

    ChickenFreak Contributor Contributor

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    Your exaggeration stripped every last thread of meaning from your message.
     

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