Friday, December 11, 2009

Iiiiiiiiiiit's Agent Appreciation Day!

So I have this little agent, I made him out of clay, etc.

Anyway, his name is Brendan Deneen.

When I made the decision to split ways with my first agent this summer, I was completely terrified when no new agent snapped me up right away. I was published! I was hot shit! Blah blah blah. After two aaaaaagonizing months of querying (I know, I know) I finally got an offer from one Brendan Deneen.

I told the other agents what was up, and it eventually came down to a Western-style showdown between Brendan and another agent. I spoke to her on the phone too--she was a big name, very sweet, obviously a complete master of her domain. She knew the publishing world inside and out. There's no way I would have regretted going with her.

And then I talked to Brendan.

"Yeah," he said, speaking of INVINCIBLE SUMMER, "This is going to be a rough sell. I mean, can you imagine someone going into the bookstore and being like...I want a really depressing little book with no plot?"

And I was laughing my ass off.

Brendan sold my book in under a month, I'm pretty sure. And when he called to tell me the news and I didn't have my phone (I was out with my mother, opening a Checking Account. Ain't life grand?) he called the house, talked to my dad, got my mom's cell phone number from him, and tracked me down on my mom's phone. That shit is dedication.

Brendan knows exactly when to tease me and exactly when to tell me I'm a rock star. His emails consistently make me laugh. He has easily the most beautiful baby girl in existence. And he's the only person I've ever met who says "fuck" as much as I do.

He's a rock star, and he's exactly what I needed.

But I want to point out real quick that he was my second agent. My first agent sold BREAK. And things were great for awhile. And then, as sometimes happens in relationships of all kinds, they weren't.

I want to point out that I didn't stick with my first agent when things got too difficult to manage.

Because if you are an agented writer and you're sitting here going, "Shit, my agent isn't NEARLY as cool as Brendan, and s/he would never call my mom/curse with me/tell me I'm fantastic," be open (like I wasn't, for a long time) to the possibility that you might need a new agent.

There are a TON of great agents out there. There are a TON of great writers out there. And there are a ton of ways great agents and great writers can match up that, for whatever reason, don't work. If your relationship with your agent isn't working for you, it really is OK to try again.

The fact that I'm transferring out of Brown next semester doesn't mean it's not one of the best schools in the country, y'know? It's not an insult to Brown. It just means it isn't right for me. (Also, I hate you, Brown, but that's not the point.)

Find an agent who makes your soul sing. Find your Brendan.


Kody Keplinger said...

Love it, Hannah! My agent has told me that Brendan is the shiz, and I think you just confirmed it. Woot woot!

JKB said...

YOUR agent sounds as cool as MY agent!



Kathleen O. said...

You crack me up, Hannah! :) Awesome! I think I laughed for almost 5 minutes straight 'cause I knew EXACTLY what you were talking about, lol (I interned in the same office as Jo and Brendan for 3 months). Totally awesome.

- K

suzie townsend said...

This is such a great post! And you conveyed Brendan EXACTLY in such a quick post :)

Casey McCormick said...

Fabulous post, Hannah! He sounds amazing.

Happy Agent Appreciation Day, Brendan!

Suzette Saxton said...

My agent IS as fantabulous as your agent! Really!

(heh heh - My agent IS your agent!)

Love your blog, Hannah.

Oh! You'll appreciate my verification word: fluckerg (so close!)

Hardygirl said...

I have found the one who makes my soul sing. Love hearing your story--and SUCH great advice about ending it if it isn't working.

Yay Brendan!!

Sarah Frances Hardy

Dannie said...

I wish I knew someone who says fuck as much as I do...I would get a lot less looks.

ElanaJ said...

"Find your Brendan." I love that! Congrats to you for finding him and Happy Agent Day to him!

Andrea said...

Aww. Brendan is adorable.

Maggie said...

That's funny because "depressing little books with no plot" are my favorite :)