When I find a submission that I fall in LOVE with, I don't just shoot off an email and offer representation right there. Because that is only one part of the whole package (a majorly important part, but still not the whole thing). What I do first is set up a phone call to talk (or start some sort of correspondence, stat). Why do I do this?
Well...to see if we'd work well together!
There are a ton of great projects out there to go around, and I turn down publishable stuff every day (whether just at query stage or beyond). But I think what makes a client-agent partnership work long and successfully is the relationship.
This doesn't mean you have to be BFFs or talk everyday...it just means that you have to fulfill the following criteria:
1. You both love the work (well, duh...I hope they love their own stuff!).
2. You have a revision style that meshes well (agents can typically mold their revision style just a bit to suit each client's needs, but they still have a typical style and it needs to work for both of you).
3. You feel comfortable talking to one another. Does this mean that you have to talk every day? Every week? Every month? No. But when you DO talk, it should be fairly easy to be open and honest with your questions and opinions.
4. You need to have the same goals.
This last one is important.
You may be scratching your head, thinking something like "Um, Joanna--isn't everyone's goal to get published?"
Of course it is!
But what I mean here is that your long term goals need to be the same. And what you want out from your career in publishing should be the same. At NCLit, when we sign clients, we want it to be long term. So when we go on submission or advise them in decisions, we're thinking not
only how those decisions will affect right NOW, but also how they'll affect your writing career years down the line.
But I digress. Because today I'm talking about why my clients make me HAPPY!! *twirls*
It's because they rock. It's only Tuesday and so far this week I've gotten to hang out with Amy Lukavics, Kody Keplinger and Shelby Bach (featured in my pic above, in that order, from L to R). And if you want to know what we did, just read Shelby's blog post about Monday night. Or check out a very happy-to-be-published Kody K below. Seriously...my clients make me happy, man. Who else gets to do this stuff and call it "work"?? I am more than happy to continue working like this for the rest of my life.
Don't forget to enter in the contest to win loads of DUFFiness stuff!
Happy DUFF Day, Everyone!