Sunday, July 01, 2007

Agent & Editor's Conference...and other poop in the room

At the recent Agent & Editor's Conference I attended in Austin, I wish I had brought my Scat guide (left), which some coaching colleagues bought for me so that no matter where I go or what I'm doing, I'll always have a handy reference for naming the poop in the room. Had I brought it to the conference, I think I would have been much more equipped to recognize the particularly crusty poop I stepped in as I walked into my agent consultation.

The entire exchange between me and the agent was a singularly poopy experience. Without going into detail, let me just say that she was not the agent for me. I was disappointed (in hindsight, of course) by the way the entire thing is set up: Essentially, you pay hundreds of dollars for the opportunity to sit down with an agent from a big New York firm for 10 short minutes. Talk about a steep hourly rate! Even with the online bios and all the research I did beforehand on, so much of the experience is a roll of the dice. Publishing is as much about relationships as it is about books and book ideas. If you and the agent don't gel relationally in those first 10 seconds, then it probably doesn't matter how strong your material may be; you won't get signed. In truth, even if she had wanted the material, I would've opted out. We were not a match.

Thanks to all of your supportive thoughts and prayers for the event. Your prayers were answered in the sense that I learned this was definitely not the right door.

1 comment:

lyricalico said...

I have thought about this Scat guide all week long. There is a type of jazz vocalizing called scat singing. It is extemporaneously improvising vocally using the chord changes of the song. It seems to me that the Word Police did not tell the right hand what the left hand was doing in naming both poop and this jazz vocalizing by the same name. And yet I am convinced there is some kind of correlation which I have not uncovered yet. Perhaps it lies in the fertilization elements both poops utilize. For now all I can do is comment, "do bob do sciddily diddly oooh ya ya ya"