As promised, PeeWee is ready to work! And on a holiday week, too. He received a whole bunch of questions and will eventually get to all of them...it just might take a while. There will be no doggy naps for this old pup!
For those of you just catching up, there is a new segment on the blog called Ask PeeWee. Read the original post here. All you have to do is email your publishing/writing/submission question to PeeWee (at) nancycoffeyliterary (dot) com, and PeeWee will pick from the questions at random, answering 1-2 per week.
Here's his first!
QUESTION: There seems to be a debate amongst agents about posting works online. Some agents suggest posting work serially, or in a forum. Others reject the idea entirely. What is this agency's stance is on the matter and is it beneficial for a writer to post their work online serially and/or for a limited time? Thanks.
WOOF:Nancy Coffey Literary is OK with clients posting samples online as long as it doesn't interfere with any contractual obligations with a publisher (and as long as we've discussed the benefit of posting online with the client beforehand). But if you're asking about non-clients (or writers posting prior to signing with us), it doesn't bother us a lick. If/when we start working together, we'd advise you to take down any samples at that point (while revising and before submissions) that we feel might hinder the agenting process, but it wouldn't affect our decision on whether or not to offer representation.
As for the benefit of posting work serially and/or for a limited time--I have a question for you. What you are hoping to gain from posting online? In a forum, are you looking for feedback? On your blog, are you hoping to catching some agent/editor attention? How long do you leave the sample up for? All around, what are you hoping to accomplish?
Depending on your goal, the benefit to posting online can be really helpful...or not. It also depends on where you're posting the work and who the audience is. If it's on your blog with 30 followers, it probably wouldn't matter either way. If you're looking to gain agent/editor attention on your blog of 30 followers, there is a good chance that you won't. If you have 3,000 followers, your chances are better. We find talent online in a number of ways, but usually by knowing someone who knows you through the intrawebzzz. The more followers you have, the better the chances. But that still is no guarantee.
If you're looking just for feedback, there are some fantastic forums and critique groups that are out there, so the benefit can be huge.
Think about what you want first, then consider whether or not posting on line will help you achieve that particular goal. Then you'll have your answer.