September 29, 2010

Can I Reject an Offer My Literary Agent Receives? | printable version

Hi Angela,

What is the best website to locate an Agent?

Also, when/if the agent locates a publishing house, does the author have the choice/opportunity to say 'No, I'd rather not have that house, would you please look around at others'? Or, do we have to accept the first house because that's the agent's job and they know what's best?

You should obtain an agent who doesn't charge any up-front fees.

Try the Association of Authors' Representatives here:
http://www.aaronline.org

You absolutely do NOT have to sign a contract just because your agent received an offer. While many agents are ethical and trustworthy, there are also so-called literary agents who are pushing their own agenda, or even promoting their own publishing company under a different name. Always read each contract in its entirety and also Google any firm you are considering doing business with, including traditional publishers. Just because a firm claims they're a traditional publisher doesn't mean they really are and there are plenty of sharks preying on authors while pretending to be agents or traditional publishers.

On the flip-side, even if the offer is really from a legitimate traditional publisher, you are still not required to sign their contract just because your agent tells you to. If the terms aren't to your liking, don't sign it.


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