Bulldog Agents

Agent 007 has an interesting post on her blog about how an agent can work to protect the author’s interests. It doesn’t necessarily have to be an antagonistic relationship between the agent and the editor, but ultimately, the agent’s allegiance is to the writer. Agent 007 writes, “In the publishing business, it???s crucial that an agent protect her authors, guard their books, and always present a united front. Sometimes, that makes us pains in the ass. But so be it. We’re here to protect and serve.”

Pat Walsh, in Slushpile’s favorite 78 Reasons Why Your Book May Never Be Published & 14 Reasons Why It Just Might confirms Agent 007’s attitude of tenacity. Walsh writes that when he began working on his book, he chose his agent “because she pissed me off.” As an editor at MacAdam/Cage, Walsh contacted a number of agents about changing a small detail in the author contracts. Every one agreed to his request except the agent in question. She declined the editorial request even though “it is a small thing, but it is not in my client’s best interest and I am not going to bend.” Walsh says that he was mad buut that he realized it’s not about personalities and agreeing or disagreeing. Instead, it’s about the agent’s responsibility to her client. “When I needed an agent,” Walsh writes, “I knew immediately whom to turn to.”

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