Thursday, June 20, 2013

Agent provocateur

Maybe things are looking up...
So far, in my writing journey, there's one experience that has eluded me (well, yes, apart from never having received a huge book deal). There have been editors, and contracts, but no agent. 

Perhaps it's time to review my approach, as I consider:

Things you must never say to an agent*

I've made you a key ring, enclosed, from my own hair.

I've discovered that your house is only a couple of bus rides from my office. I could bring my manuscript over, one evening after work, along with a pizza for us. I bet you like Hawaiian too.

I hope, even if you ultimately completely devastate me by rejecting my wonderful book, that we become friends.

I wouldn't say my book is a best seller, but you can!

Do you like horses? I bet you don't like them as much as I do. I LOVE horses. And alpacas. Anyway, please find enclosed my spy thriller - about a crime-solving horse and her alpaca sidekick.

Enclosed is a photograph of my tattoo, based on your website photo. 

How soon can I get an advance on future royalties? Only my landlord is chasing me for last month's rent.

Of course, there are much better margins in self-publishing, but I thought I'd give you a chance to prove yourself.

Several agents I sent my book to, who all rejected it first, suggested I try you as a last resort.

This is the first book I've ever written, so feel free to mark up any corrections for me. And if you have any ideas about how I can improve it, that would be great too. Sorry, but I can't afford stamps right now - I'll pay you back when the book starts earning.

There's no rush for a decision. I'm away in Marbella for a fortnight, so take your time.

I've put a surveillance device in the envelope so I can get honest feedback. Remember to speak clearly.

* And in case you're an agent reading this (you know who you are), I'll be good next time!

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