So, now that everyone got a chance to vent, what makes you happy about agents?


  1. That was too much negativity for the day after our retreat. Wow.

    The only agent that I really had any conversation with was Rachel Vater – who seemed to be made of awesome.


  2. In no particular order.

    Kristin Nelson, Jessica Faust, Jennifer Jackson, Jonathan Lyons, Lucienne Diver, Janet Reid, Nathan Bransford, Miss Snark and Rachelle Gardner for having interesting blogs which are also supply a wealth of information and encouragement.

    When I was querying in a past life, all we had were the books. The information was often out of date and it was a total crap shoot about what they really wanted and how they wanted it. There were guidelines, but the books were already out of date by the time they published.

    I kept all my query letters and the rejection letters. I cringe now when I look at them because I really did some stupid things. Where was #queryfail, Miss Snark and all the others then?

    Thankfully, you all take time out of your busy lives to blog, archive helpful information and continually put out valuable advice.

    Special thanks to Richard Henshaw. I sent him a query for my suspense novel years ago. He wrote back a personal rejection saying he loved the characters and writing, but he was so swamped with present clients he was afraid it would take longer to do my manuscript justice than I deserved. He asked me to think of him if I didn’t find an agent soon or had another work in the future.

    It may have been a form rejection for all I know, but I know he at least read it and he made me feel like he was honestly trying to be fair to me.

    Nathan Bransford always stays positive and posts some wonderful information. It’s like a course in publishing.

    Janet Reid. She makes me laugh and she encourages me. Regardless of how the manuscript turns out, I will always be her number one fan. She has a way of cutting straight to the chase that sometimes bothers people, but I find it utterly refreshing. She is a pure delight at a conference.

    Jessica Faust and Miss Kim. Bookends doesn’t mind tackling the hot topics. There is always a lot of good information here as well as fun for all.

    Jonathan Lyons for sending me a pm and suggesting two awesome agents when I was whining about him not repping fantasy.

    Rachelle Gardner for having such a fun, uplifting and helpful blog.

    Jennifer Jackson for query wars. Love it.

    Rachelle Vater. Pure awesome with a smile. A fascinating woman to visit with and a remarkable agent. Everyone I spoke to who met her commented on how wonderful she was.

    Donald Maass. His books and workshops are well worth the money and time. I haven’t spoken to anyone who didn’t learn from his classes. Even though I want to pull my hair out and scream, his advice is spot on and worth the Tylenol. It’s not always easy, but the results are worth the pain.

  3. A response to Agentpass day at Bookends.

    Since I am now kind of awake, I’ll add some more.

    Jacqueline Winspear. I met her at Surrey IWC in the elevator several times and each time she asked me how I was enjoying the conference. Later, I had a blue pencil with her and she was incredibly helpful. Very nice, very professional and classy lady as well as being a talented author.

    Paul Stevens editor. I had a pitch appointment with him. I stumbled through my canned hook and he smiled when he should have groaned and rolled his eyes. We started talking about the main and the research I had done into the premise. He mentioned the trophy buckle I was wearing and said I obviously knew horses so that was a plus. It devolved into a discussion about Celtic and Sarmatian women warrior burial mounds. He asked how long it was. 165,000 words, but I’m trying to get it down to 135,000 words. Handed me a card and told me how to submit.

    I’m sure these agents and editors get mortally sick of people stuttering out their speeches, but they find a way to put the person at ease.

    Bernice Lever. A poet and teacher who graciously accepted a blue pencil with me even though I write epic fantasy. She gave me some very valuable advice on the manuscript even though she kept reminding herself, “Prose, Bernice, not poetry.”

    Jo Bourne, who has two Rita finalists this year, and is always so gracious with advice about writing. Such a talented writer and a gifted teacher.

    Diana Gabaldon who is another very talented writer and yet finds time to teach and offer advice.

    All the agents, authors and editors who do workshops and conferences. They really do make a difference.

  4. Beth, you are exactly right, agents are an author’s best friend. I am amazed at the anger. The agents don’t make the work good or bad, the author does.

    And, you will have agents beating down your door when you give them a peek.

  5. you will have agents beating down your door when you give them a peek.

    Keep saying that…

    Your faith in me is very warming. Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *