Seems to me, communication is the key when dealing with your agent.
No, I'm not agented (yet), but I think I'll throw my opinion around on this one anyway. :-)
On one agent's blog, I noticed an anonymous comment from someone who, apparently, had an agent who'd been sitting on her ms. for three years. Three long, freakin' years.
What's up with that?
It's possible I misunderstood the post, but I don't think so. It sounded as if the poor writer was with a prestigious agency/agent, and it's possible that agent took on too many clients.
The thing is, what was happening with her ms? Did her agent actually send out the puppy and get negatives all around? Did she communicate this to the writer? Did the writer ask? Did the agent ask for edits - as I assume she must have - or did the agent just leave things as is? (I would think even minor edits are necessary before sending a ms. on to editors.)
Whatever has happened, it's obvious the writer and the agent aren't communicating. It's possible the agent did ask for edits in that timeframe (3 years) and has sent it out with nobody wanting it. But it's also obvious this isn't getting through to the writer; obviously, or she wouldn't have asked about it.
Don't be afraid to ask your agent where she's sending your ms. It's part of the writer/agent relationship. You, as a writer, have the right to know where your agent is sending your ms.; after all, it's your baby, right? Whether the agent tells you straight out or you send a short email inquiry, it doesn't matter. Back scratching works both ways.
My advice to that poor dear was to politely let her agent know that she (the writer) didn't think it was working out, and to be released from her contract. Yeah, she'll have to do the whole query thing again (yuck!), and do the entire waiting game again (double yuck!), but I phrased it this way: In the 3 years your agent's been (ostensibly) sitting on your ms., another agent would've had you do some edits and sent it out to publishers, and, possibly, if the first one didn't sell, the agent would've asked for something else you're working on.
Don't be afraid to admit something is not working. Writing is hard work, as is agenting. Don't you want someone working as hard as you are?
Right. I thought so.
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