Thursday, January 17, 2008

Agent anguish

I almost have a new agent! Two of 'em to be exact. Now I gotta choose one, and that's not gonna be easy.

For now, I've decided to put my search for a literary agent on hold. That process is way too time consuming, and I've found it a drain on my confidence and creativity. I have one submission (three written but not illustrated stories) out to a lit agent, but if that falls through, I'm done for awhile. I'm getting an art agent.

Now which one to choose, that's where I anguish. I need an agent who can keep work on my plate, smaller projects that can pay my bills in between illustrating trade picture books. I need in-and-out, bread-and-butter projects, educational publishing, children's magazines.

In terms of their ability to find work, both agents seem promising. One is very, very sweet, the other is very straight forward, business-like. One is fairly new to the business, while the other has over twenty years experience. One works in Ohio while the other is out of New York. One, because she is newer to the business, I sense will sell me more aggressively. One likes my digital work, the other likes my painted work. Both are very enthusiastic about my portfolio and confident in their ability to sell me. Either one would make a great agent.

For me, it's all going to boil down to who will offer the most flexibility. I need an art agent to sell my work to educational publishers, children's magazines and other juvenile publishing outlets, while leaving me the option to pursue a literary (editorial) agent to handle my written and illustrated endeavors. And so far, they both seem open to that. Ug! Anguish.

I can say, after a year of searching for a literary agent, and being treated like spit on a street curb, it's nice to feel wanted.

1 comment:

rindawriter said...

Don some agents actually do prefer artist/writer combos or just artists that will do tradebooks?

The educational market and the tradebook market are very different things.

Whatever do you do with originals? Do the companies keep them? Or are do they secure the copyright to you? Or do they keep only the right to the originals in a book form, i.e., sequential?

For example, I own the text to my picturebook. I don't own the art and the book cannot be published with that art again even if the artist owned the originals.

It is all very odd how copyrights can work out, once you are selling to the publisher.

Best of luck, Rinda