Received a "request for partial" from an agent, now what?

  • An agent who represents author/illustrators responded to a query of mine. This is the first time I received an answer that isn't a rejection email. She asked to see the manuscript for a previous self-published children's book, and asked for some story lines for illustrations I had sent. That was on Friday, and now I am wondering if I should email, call, or don't do anything, and I don't want to screw it up! Any advice from anyone else who has experience in this area?

    @Will-Terry, @Lee-White, @Jake-Parker ?

  • I just really don't want to scare this person away!

  • SVS OG

    @bdyanne I think you can be honest with her and say you lean more toward illustration work and not writing but reached out to her anyway because you thought she would be a good fit for you. Be pleasant and even if it doesn't pan out it's communication with an agent that could benefit you later on. Send those story lines, even if they're quick synopses. It could lead to a possible match for a writer she may have in mind. Not sure if this helps but wanted to express my thoughts on it!

  • I don't think you will "screw up" if you email the agent your manuscript and story lines for the other illustrations. The worst that can happen is they will say it isn't a good fit. But they can't say you are a good fit if you don't send them your stuff!

  • Oh I'm sorry, I mean that I answered her and she hasn't answered back. So I just don't want to pester her, but I don't know how long to wait.

  • @bdyanne Did you look up this agent and see if her agency would be a good fit for you? I know it's exciting (and I'm excited for you), but make sure this person is going to be someone you would like to work with, who is going to represent your style of illustration. Sometimes we think any agent is better than no agent, but from the people I've known who've had them that isn't the case. Good luck!

  • @fauxtoddgraphy thanks a lot!

  • @rhirsch I did look her up and she used to work for Random House and now she has an agency where she only represents a small amount of people. It seems like it could be a good fit because I have written a couple books. I do wonder why it is taking her so long to answer my email with the items she requested.

    Thanks for your input, I did think that any agent is better than none but I will think twice now.

  • Pro SVS OG

    @bdyanne Anything up to four weeks is completely normal. Don´t get nervous, long waiting times are normal. If she doesn´t get back to you within a month, it´s time to send a polite enquiry....
    Timing in the publishing industry is glacial....

  • Oh, now I understand! @smceccarelli is right. 4 weeks is normal. The waiting is killer, I know.

  • @smceccarelli Wow, that is glacial... Well I hope it results in something positive! Thanks so much!

  • @joy-heyer It's so bad!! After a few days of waiting I already lose all motivation to work, like I'm not good enough. I'm lucky she responded at all, so I hope this turns out positively. Thanks for responding and helping me out!

  • Pro SVS OG

    @bdyanne I know your pain, but this is a good training! What with clients going totally silent after you send them final art, the agent taking three weeks to give you an opinion about your manuscript, waiting for client reviews for four weeks when you´re on a deadline or (worst of all) ADs coming back with a list of revision that basically means “do it all over again”..... it´s very important not to attach motivation to external confirmation as a creative, otherwise it´s constant suffering!

  • @smceccarelli wise words! 🙂

  • SVS OG

    I’m so excited for you. I do hope the agent gets back to you. By the way, have you googled the authors and the books this agent handled? If your work is similar to theirs, there’s a high chance that you’ll wok great together. I wish you luck!

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