Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Worshipping at the Altar of the Agent
That's how I looked at agents. Me, a respected freelance journalist who dealt with editors on a regular basis under a purely formal guise. Those magazine editors were my employers, not objects of desire.
Yet for some reason when I began to query, I got all foamy at the mouth, googly-eyed, and starstruck. I look back at myself and I get embarrassed, for me and for the agents.
How do agents feel when they realize they're being pursued, even worshiped, by hordes of zombie writers? I say zombie because we're all exhausted, falling apart, and have only one thing on our minds - not brains, agents. ;)
Since I told myself last December that I would no longer query and I would take my career into my own hands, I've mellowed, A LOT, when it comes to agents. Do I still want one? OF COURSE. What self-respecting writer wouldn't? Yes, it's awesome to be an indie writer, but there are things we just can't do. Who's going to show your book to the movie execs? Who's going to sell it to other countries? Who's going to help you move up the ladder? Even Joe Konrath has an agent. Authors may be turning away from traditional publishing, but they aren't, and shouldn't be, turning away from agents.
I, in fact, have one novel that I still might query. The great part about all this is that in the meantime I am selling books and gaining readership. I am doing what I've always wanted to do. From now on, when, and if, I deal with an agent I want it to look more like this:
Writing is a business and I want an agent to work with me. Of course there will be plenty of laughter and sarcasm, because who would I be without it? But I no longer worship at their feet....and I think any self-respecting agent would probably appreciate it.
What about you guys? Do you still want an agent? Are you dying to find one or is an agent another cog in your business plan? Fill me in!