"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Monday, October 28, 2013

Interview With an Agent

When you are trying to find an agent, you have every right to question or interview them. After all, you hope to have a long relationship with this individual. It’s best to be certain the two of you are compatible. When interviewing with an agent be sure to:

1)      Answer their questions, but listen carefully.

2)      Don’t dominate the conversation, or become pushy. Just be direct and concise.

3)      Ask if they are a member of AAR – Association of Authors’ Representatives. If they say no, ask why. It’s not necessary for them to be, but you may want to learn more about their background and experience: like this.

4)      Ask about their procedures for selling your work, books they’ve sold in the past, which authors they have represented in the past, and who are they currently representing, etc.

5)      Ask to speak with some of their clients. Another author can give you the most unbiased answers about working with a particular agent.

6)      What is their plan for selling your book, and how long do they believe it will take?

7)      What do they expect you to do to help with sales, and what services do they offer?

8)      How much input and communication will you have about your account, and how often will you receive updates?

9)      Do they have a protocol for how you will work together - assistants who will help with your account, how often do they like to meet or speak with their authors, and when is the best time to contact them?

10)  What are your options if you don’t receive the results promised after X amount of time?

Agents should not ask you for fees up front because they get a percentage of your deal. In other words, they only get paid if you do. You also don’t want someone who is promising you a certain amount of money, movie rights, or any other perks. They cannot foresee what a publisher will offer you.

You want an agent who will be completely honest with you.
Have you interviewed with an agent? What tips do you have for someone about to sit in their first?

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