Friday, April 17, 2009

An Interview With Four Agents

Back on February 20 here, I directed readers to an article in Poets & Writers where Jofie Ferrari-Adler interviewed four young editors.

Now in the May/June issue of Poets & Writers, Ferrari-Adler does the same thing again--this time with agents. My friend, Jeanne Lyet Gassman posted about it on a writers' loop on Wednesday. Publishers Lunch mentioned it yesterday.

Here's an exerpt in which agent Maria Massie talks about when she reads a manuscript that grabs her:
MASSIE: . . . It's like you have this moment of clarity and you recognize something that you're so absorbed with. I read a lot of things that are beautifully written where I say to myself, "Oh, this is good," but I'm not bowled over or sucked right in. It's so subjective. I can read something and pass on it and I hear, two days later, that there was a bidding war and it sold for a ton of money, but it just wasn't the thing that I was going to fall in love with.

STEINBERG: And you're okay with that.

MASSIE: You have to be okay with it because it's so subjective. I'm not necessarily going to see what somebody else sees, or read a book the way somebody else reads it. That's one thing that writers who are looking for an agent should always remember: All agents are different. Everyone has different tastes. What I like to read might be different than Anna or Peter or Jim. That's a great thing about what we do--there's so much to choose from. And what you fall in love with is a very personal choice.
Go here to read the interview online.

1 comment:

Bill said...

I found that interview enlightening and disheartening. A lot of it really depends on who you know.