Author Topic: An odd request...  (Read 4654 times)

Offline adriannac

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An odd request...
« on: June 19, 2013, 03:46:12 PM »
Today I queried an agent who, as a standard, asks for an 8 week exclusive if she requests your manuscript. I already have other agents reading but decided to query her anyway not knowing how long it would take her to respond or if that response would be positive. As luck would have it, she wrote back immediately requesting my manuscript (exclusively) and asked if I could not grant an exclusive to please tell her who else was considering it and for how long. She would then consider making an exception. I thought she wanted to know about the other agents in a general sense, so I told her 4 other agents were reading and for how long. She wrote back wanting specific names. And it made me wary. In the two years I've spent querying various projects, I have never had an agent demand to know who else (specifically) was reading. If it was an offer, then perhaps it would make more sense, but it seems a little excessive at this point. Any one else have this experience? Should I go ahead and tell her? I guess it's not a secret, and I know it's probably not a big deal, but her insistence makes me afraid she's going to scare the others off somehow hahaha Any advice is appreciated!

     
« Last Edit: June 19, 2013, 03:59:58 PM by adriannac »

Offline sharpegirl

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2013, 03:57:09 PM »
If this is a legitimate agent with sales with a good agency who you'd like to work with, I wouldn't worry about providing names too much. A professional isn't going to try to sabotage you, publishing is a small world, the other agents are probably known to her/friends even/colleagues. It's a bit of an odd request at the full stage, but it does happen at the offer stage (I got asked who offered by several of my offering agents).

Good luck, whatever you decide!

Offline Tabris

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2013, 04:06:10 PM »
I would also wonder why she wanted this information, honestly. She may want to be sure that you are being read by legitimate agents who know the genre (as opposed to if you firebombed out your manuscript and of the 10,000 queries you sent, four scammers are reading it.) But she may also want to contact them, which is a bit...off-putting.

On the other hand, she may want to contact them to gloat:  http://jetreidliterary.blogspot.com/2010/06/would-you-please-quit-assuming-stuff.html  This is an interesting blog post because one agent who had the manuscript did contact two other agents with the manuscript, but more in the spirit of friendly competition...and what she learned because of that. ;-)

Offline bodwen

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2013, 05:34:34 PM »
I would have loved to be a fly on the wall for those phonecalls.  If you stumble across a goldmine that two of your friends have already express a mild interest in purchasing, why would you call them to gloat BEFORE you have the deed in hand?  That seems sort of strange to me, but then again, I'm not an agent. 

Frankly, I'm wondering if she was a bit baffled as to why the author hadn't been scooped yet and wanted to see if they knew something she didn't.

Offline adriannac

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #4 on: June 20, 2013, 07:19:17 AM »
Thanks for the advice guys. I decided to roll the dice and send the names. She has a reputable sales record, and if she does talk to the other agents and scare them off (which I highly doubt) that just means those agents weren't the right one. Thanks again for the replies! And Tabris- the link was very interesting. I love getting a glimpse of what agents do "behind the scenes!"

Offline Sarah Ahiers (Falen)

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #5 on: June 20, 2013, 08:31:09 AM »
I know which agent this is. She asked the same of me. I didn't give her the specific names, but i did give her the agencies. For me she said it was out with too many people, but that i could send her the full if i hear back Nos for all of them.

FWIW, she does have legit sales and everyone i know of who has dealt with her say that she's thoughtful and responsive in her rejections. So i wouldn't be too worried about scams
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Offline Brooke0701

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #6 on: June 20, 2013, 10:24:08 AM »
I think I know the agent you are referring to as well, and from what I've heard she's completely legit, this is just how she rolls. If she won't read it without the exclusive I would do exactly what Falen said and wait it out. If nothing else, you have a nice full request to keep in your back pocket.

It sounds like you have a lot of good irons in the fire, congrats!
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Offline Sandbox

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #7 on: June 22, 2013, 02:44:03 PM »
This is weird. I have to wonder about the psychology behind it. Does the agent hate competing? Does she decide whether the book is "worth" competing for based on the competition's "worthiness"  ? Strange that she said if others reject it she'd look at it.

Offline mmmpancakes

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Re: An odd request...
« Reply #8 on: August 05, 2013, 12:16:15 PM »
I always wonder about that too. When I got my offer and nudged the others who had the manuscript, some of them wanted to know the name of the offering agent. I've been told they do that (as in, my agent told me) to make sure you really do have an offer. So maybe it's a similar type of deal in them wanting to make sure you're truthful about having readers. (I feel like they'd care less about that, though - lots of manuscripts get readers, so would she really be sending out these emails to every single full she requests? Seems like a lot of work).
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