Human writes

The moving finger writes and, having writ, gets a link:

Joe Nassise lists 10 reasons why literary agents are vital. He just broke off with one he’d worked with for seven years. I second everything he says. By breaking off with an unsatisfactory (to him) agent, he also illustrates an important codicil: You have to have an agent, but a bad or unsuitable agent is worse than no agent at all. I’m on my fifth agent. Of the first three, two were good and diligent while the middle one was a lazy hack without a clue. The fourth agent was unenthusiastic about a nonfiction proposal I’d worked up. The fifth agent, my current one, loved the proposal and helped it become my first published book. So be bold.

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2 thoughts on “Human writes

  1. Bill B says:

    I have had the same agent since, I think 1993. In the beginning, when I was finishing and had completed my book, he was a bundle of energy. Submissions to this editor and that editor (Judith Regan liked it, but she only dealt with celebrities. Or authors such as Howard Stern who asked her to show him her boobs.) Not to mention the movie production companies.

    But when it looked as though no one was going to bite, things came to a standstill. I guess I can’t blame him, he has to go with the money. But it was a little disappointing.

    So I decided to self-publish my second book. At least I was able to get it out there and get a little publicity.

    And I never understood the elitism in the publishing world for independents. In the film industry, indies are considered edgy. In the music world, indies are considered trend-setters. But in the book publishing world, indies are considered no-talent losers who couldn’t get a publisher. As if you could snap your fingers and make it so.

    So now I’m in the process of taking all 714 manuscript pages of my first book (I wrote about the Berta investigation and trial), tightening it up a bit and preparing it for self-publishing.

    It’s kind of like when you’re on a road trip, and you decide to jump off the congested highway in favor of taking the longer — but traffic-free — route. It may take you longer to get to where you’re going, but at least you’re moving.

  2. bookofvoices says:

    Good points, all. I’m wavering among self-publishing “19th Nervous Breakdown” and “The Book of Voices”, getting the latter published by a small publishing house who is interested but can’t do much in terms of promotion (the same one that put out my latest two), and going the conventional route of agents and conventional publishers.

    Aspects of each seem exhausting, but I gotta choose one.

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