BookEnds, LLC — A Literary Agency
I just came back from the NJRWA conference. Yup, I drove my big ole' Dodge Durango (which by the way is a lovely shade of Patriot Blue Pearl) all the way to Iselin, New Jersey and back. We left at the ungodly hour of 5 in the morning. Yes, there is a 5 in the morning. And we arrived around 1pm after the fifteen bathroom stops required of four women in one vehicle with a lot of liquid.
Anyway, I had a lovely appointment while I was there with an agent. Now, this is only the second agent appointment that I've ever had and I was scared to death.
For those of you who don't know what an agent appointment is... you sign up to get 10 or so minutes with the agent of your choice (hopefully) and then you wait until your allotted time, introduce yourself, slip into the chair in front of the agent/editor and pitch your book. Some take notes with them, some like me prefer not to have the added stress of trying to find their way through notes when they have someone looking at them. At the end of the appointment (and sometimes in the middle) you will either get a request for the material or "no thank you".
It's a bit like a cross between speed dating and job interviews. Some authors have multiple appointments at a conference and some are the ones that hang at the board and wait to see what appointments are left in hopes that they can get the agent/editor appointment of their dreams.
Okay, so... as I said... I had a very nice appointment with a very nice agent with a relatively large and well-known agency. I had to go to the bathroom before hand and I was rushing to get to the appointment. Normally, I would have rehearsed what I wanted several times in my head and walked in with an air of confidence. Not so, this time. But, the good news is that it actually did result in a request and I got to meet her face to face and see if she was someone that I could work with toward a career. I think I could.
So, back to the reason for the link to bookends... they have a great blog entry (second one down on the page entitled New Jersey RWA) about do's and don'ts for appointments. They are great and for anyone who willingly puts themselves through this it could be invaluable information. I just wish I had read it before.
Some things I would add that aren't there... brush your teeth before hand and make sure there is nothing between your teeth. And have breath mint before you go in. The last thing they want to know is what you had for lunch.
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