Today is the last installment in my series on how to get published. You can start from the beginning here.
Now the responses are rolling in. You may have one agent interested or be juggling multiple offers. Time for phone calls!
An agent may be calling to offer you representation or just to chat and get to know each other better. You’re both looking to see if you’re a good fit. Remember, you have a chance here to ask questions, too. But you shouldn’t be wasting time asking who the agent’s other clients are or anything that you could easily find online. Take the opportunity to ask things that can’t be found with a Google search. What approach he or she would like to take with your book, for example. And try to gauge the agent’s style (hand holding, hands off, etc.) and see if it’s a good match for you.
If the agent offers, you don’t have to say yes right off the bat. You can ask for a few days to think about it. They kind of expect that. You should also notify any other agents who have your full manuscript, to give them a chance to toss their hat in the ring if they’re interested.
Once you make your decision, you accept the offer of representation and let the other agents know.
Congratulations. You are off the query-go-round. From this point on everything is sunshine and rainbows!!!!!
Kidding. Next up is possibly editing/revising for your agent. Then comes the submission coaster, which is way worse on the nausea scale than the query-go-round. And there are still no guarantees. Even though your book has an agent now, it still might not sell. So, while you’re on submission WRITE YOUR NEXT BOOK. Seriously. It’ll help keep you sane during this time and might come in handy if a publisher wants to buy more than one book.
I hope this series has been helpful to all aspiring authors out there. And now you know why I couldn’t answer this question with one paragraph in the FAQ. ;)