Thursday, June 21, 2012

so, this happened

Something fantastic happened this week. Want to guess what it is???

I’m now officially represented by a literary agent!!

Her name is Emily Gref and she was my first choice out of all the agents in all the lands, which is pretty amazing, I think. Want to hear how it happened?

Okay, I’ll tell you.

It began with a query for my first book. I don’t remember how I came across Emily’s blog, but somehow I did, and it was there that I discovered her favourite reads of 2011 - which just so happened to coincide with a ton of my favourite reads of 2011 (Chime and The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate, for example). So I sent her a query letter on March 30 and she emailed back on April 9th, asking to see the full manuscript. But by this time, I had just finished my second novel, so I told her about it and she asked to see that one too.

And then? I waited. Well, sort of. There were other agents involved, requesting material, rejecting material, or asking for revisions. By the end of May, I had kind of lost hope in the possibility of Emily being interested. After all, it had been almost two months. (In her defense, she was reading TWO fulls.)

On May 30 I got an email. It was from Emily, and she wanted to know if we could set up a time to discuss my manuscripts. Um…what? Had I read that right? My heart did a little flip. I read her email again. She made no mention of offering representation, but I still couldn’t stop myself from being excited. She was going to call! Call me! About my manuscripts!

It was a week before she did, and by the end of that conversation, even though she hadn’t offered rep, I was even more sure that (if I could choose) I wanted her to be my agent. We discussed my books, the second one in particular (though she loved the first one too, which made me nearly cry) and then she asked for a revision. Since I had just spent the last month and a half on another agent’s revisions, it didn’t take long to fix the manuscript up for her. When I did, I sent it back.

And then, a day later, I got an email from a different agent who wanted to set up a phone conversation. It was Monday morning when this agent called. I remember sipping coffee on the back porch and I remember the way the sunlight made the magnolia leaves glow around the edges. I barely remember anything else, only that she offered representation, and I told her I needed a week to think about it and to let the other agents know, and then we hung up. I sat there for a good five minutes just staring into my mug.

It felt… surreal.

But it was Emily who I really wanted. So, with hope in my heart, I sent out emails to the other agents who had my manuscripts and waited. Soon enough, an email from Emily popped into my inbox and she offered too. That was it for me. She called early the next morning, and after I hung up the phone I went and jumped on the bed (careful not to jump on a certain someone sleeping there).

Exactly twenty-three-and-a-half hours after Emily’s phone call, I officially accepted her offer. And now I’m her client. I’m an agented writer!

It still feels surreal.