Agent Love

Rabbit - balloonConfession time. I know I said I’d post once I’d calmed down a bit from my agent news, but I haven’t come down much. Then again, I think that’s something worth celebrating, too. It seems to be common among writers to achieve a goal and then too soon start worrying about the next step along the path. I’ve been training myself to enjoy good news for longer (with the help of my ever patient fiance). It seems to be working – I’m still smiling.

Getting an agent is a goal many writer’s strive for, and yet this often obscures the importance of finding the RIGHT one for you. It’s potentially a life long relationship, and one of the most important ones in a writer’s career. There are so many different kinds of agents: some who edit and others who don’t, some who are mentors and others who are much more business like, and as many different styles and personality types in between. I knew what I wanted. Someone I connected with, who I felt comfortable discussing career goals with, someone who could offer editorial advice and who was passionate about writing and writers. Not asking for much, hey? But even knowing all that, how do you choose which agents to submit to?

Here’s how I made the decision to submit work to Sophie Hamley:

  1. Background: Like many agents, Sophie spent years working as an editor in the publishing industry, and comes with a wealth of knowledge and experience
  2. Client List: This was a clear winner for me, because Sophie represents writers and illustrators I have admired for many years. People whose work I strongly connect with. It was also clear from her client list that she’s passionate about literature for young people
  3. Work Style: I was fortunate enough to know several of her clients, and have heard only wonderful things about how they work together
  4. Personality Match: This is the toughest I suppose, as it’s something you can almost only gauge after meeting a person. I was lucky enough to meet Sophie at a writer’s festival, which highlights the value of conference pitch sessions like those run at the Bundaberg WriteFest and Brisbane’s CYA. Her passion and enthusiasm blew me away, especially when she was talking about her clients, and from the moment we met I knew I’d enjoy working with her 

After all that, it was clear she was the agent for me, so I’m incredibly lucky that she decided to sign me! Now I’m suffering from a slight case of Agent Love.  Something I’m not sure I want the cure for.

7 Responses to “Agent Love”

  1. 1 Lynn Priestley June 12, 2009 at 1:42 pm

    Ah, May it be a long and happy relationship, Kath and may Sophie and you see the birth of many happy healthy Battersby book babies, together! I have to tell you – whilst in a bookshop the other day, I was browsing through the picture books and I found the slot in the ‘B’s where your book will fit. I dug in my fingers and cleared a big space for you… and as women’s handbags can attest – nature abhors a vacuum. I suspect that book of yours will be filling that spot in no time…

    Thanks for sharing the love!

  2. 2 Katherine Battersby June 12, 2009 at 3:08 pm

    Lynn, you are such a sweetheart. Your words are always full of fresh and surprising analogies, mixed with a good dose of heart. Reading your messages always makes me smile :)

  3. 3 Sheryl Gwyther June 12, 2009 at 4:23 pm

    Ha ha, loved Lynn’s anology. It’s great that things are really moving along for you, Kath. You work hard and don;t give up so you deserve it. Have fun, my friend!!!! … know you just LOVE those !!!s :) Sheryl

  4. 4 Karen Tyrrell June 12, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    Kath, I’m so glad you’ve found the Perfect Match and that yours will be one Made in LITERACY Heaven … ENJOY

  5. 5 Kathryn Apel June 13, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Loved Lyn’s comment – clever and cute! Got to say, you’ve got it bad, Kath – which in this case is a good thing. Stay happy!


  6. 6 Kim Kasch June 19, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    A scone is a sign of a bad day . . . ? Pass the pastry, I’ll join you in that miserableness ;-)

  7. 7 Katherine Battersby June 20, 2009 at 9:37 am

    Ha! Kim, scones are only a sign of a bad day because I cook when I’m feeling blue – baking makes me happy :)

    But feel free to join me in a cyber pastry.

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About this Blog…

A blog of ramblings about the world of writing and illustrating for children, by an author / illustrator who might just have a thing for rabbits.

Katherine's picture books, 'Squish Rabbit' and 'Brave Squish Rabbit', are out with Viking (Penguin, US) and UQP (Australia). Please e-mail if you would like her to blog about something in particular.

All text & images  Katherine Battersby

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