1. Ghosts in Latin

    Ghosts in Latin New Member

    Feb 16, 2009
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    Does anyone know. . . ?

    Discussion in 'Publishing' started by Ghosts in Latin, May 16, 2009.

    Does anyone know how viable it is for an author to be his own agent?

    Say someone goes through whatever process required to be an agent, and himself writes under a pen-name — would being his own agent be a plausible course of action?
  2. TWErvin2

    TWErvin2 Contributor Contributor

    Nov 30, 2006
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    Ohio, USA
    If your questions is asking if it's a good idea to write under a pen name and then attempt to represent yourself as an agent using your real name...bad idea for many reasons.

    Also, there isn't an 'official process' to become an agent. Many, for example, worked as editors before becoming agents. They learned the business, contracts and have established contacts within the industry. Some others, for example, have hired on to work at established agencies, working their way up to being junior agent (for lack of a better word at the moment) and then a full agent, within the agency, then sometimes moving on to open their own agency. Kind of like an apprenticeship.

    Sure it's possible, but not necessarily recommended. A first question among many: How much do you as a writer know about contracts, in particular literary contracts and wording?

    Many authors submit without agent representation, but if they get an offer, then they seek an agent. With a small house or an e-book, a reputable agent may not be interested in representing an author. In such cases, there is always the option of hiring a literary attorney to review a contract for you.

    One can always study and learn as much as they can and try to negotiate, especially with the big houses...but most authors who have had contracts negotiated indicate the agent earned his 15%.

    There are other threads on the advantages of having an agent...

    Hope this helps.

  3. mammamaia

    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

    Nov 21, 2006
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    Coquille, Oregon
    another major stumbling block is how you'll be perceived by publishers... if you claim to be two different people--the client and the agent--that's out and out deception... a major no-no... and probably ample cause for breaking any contract you negotiate for yourself...

    and if you admit to being both from the get-go, then you'll just be seen as clueless at best, an idiot at worst... like the attorney who represents himself, you'll have a fool for a client...

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