I’ve been trying to think of a way to describe the way I feel about parting ways with my agent of four years. It’s always hard to admit failure, but there is a relief in having an answer to a festering problem, even if it’s a disappointing answer.
So everybody’s wondering what happened, or more specifically, what went wrong. Well the biggest thing is that the response my books were getting from editors indicated they wouldn’t be selling anytime soon. The second one got high interest from a few places, but they ultimately passed. I got the feeling from their comments that even though they liked the book, it didn’t fit into a mold they thought they could sell. (Which I’m sure will send a particular friend into a conniption of righteousness. ;)
The other big thing is that my agent’s communication style wasn’t really a good fit for me. Of course, it being my first time having an agent, I didn’t know what to expect, so it took me a while to figure out what kind of communication I prefer. Once I figured it out, it seemed hopeless. One book had already been sucked in by the black hole of publishing, and a second was circling it. I’d known for a while I was going to have to leave the agency, but I wanted to wait for the right time. I wanted to give her the chance to be compensated for the work she’d done, and I didn’t want to interrupt submissions.
Well, let me tell you, there is no right time. After four years it finally became clear. I just woke up one morning--March 29, to be exact--ready to pull the trigger. As I composed the letter, I looked over my contract to make sure everything was in order, and I saw the date next to my signature. March 29.
I’m sorry my story isn’t juicy with snarky dialog and tears, but it just wasn’t that way. I expressed my gratitude and regret, and she was incredibly understanding and supportive.
And now? I feel free. I feel lighter. I’ve learned a ton about how to deal with business and people in general. I don’t consider my time with her wasted, but I doubt I will wait so long to pull the trigger on a frustrating situation again.
Is there anything specific you’d like to know? I’ll be glad to answer any of your questions.