Blogger: Rachelle Gardner
Recently a blog reader wrote and asked: I was wondering, what if I get an agent and she tries to sell two or three of my novels, all in the same genre, and nothing sells. What would happen in this case?
My answer: Sounds like you and your agent will be at a crossroads and need to make some decisions.
Each agent is different, and some agents might set you free at this point, believing they’re not the right agent to help you find success. You’ll want to clarify whether your agent wishes to continue or hang it up.
Remember that you have a choice, too. If you think another agent can serve you better, it would be a good time for you to make this decision. Be cautious not to automatically blame your agent for the lack of a sale – she’s put in many hours on your behalf and hasn’t gotten paid a thing. She probably deserves the benefit of a conversation, at least. But if you honestly think the agent hasn’t done a good job, you need to address it.
If you and your agent want to continue working together, you’ll probably have a meeting to discuss your options. You’ll take a hard look at why these projects are missing the mark with publishers, asking questions like:
→ Why aren’t your books capturing the attention of editors? Is it the ideas? The writing?
→ Could there be something specific about your characters and plot lines aren’t resonating?
→ How much of this is due to the market, and how much is it the specific books you’re pitching?
→ Is it the genre? If so, is there another genre you’re interested in writing that perhaps is more saleable?
Ideally this meeting would culminate in a strategy and action plan for moving forward to find the success you’ve been working toward.
Keep in mind that this isn’t an uncommon scenario. Once you get an agent, it could still be some time until serendipity strikes again and you find the perfect match between a project and a publisher.
What would you do if you were the writer in this situation?
What happens when publishers aren’t snapping up your projects? Agent @RachelleGardner answers. Click to Tweet.
What to do when your projects are missing the mark with publishers. Click to Tweet.