What exactly is an agent, anyway? According to Dictionary.com, an agent is
That about sums it up, right? No? Okay, to make it more clear, an agent is the go-between for you and your publisher/editor. You give them the right to make decisions for you, and they keep you out of the fire. They also attract the interest of publishers who couldn't care less who you are unless you have an agent. The reason being, I guess, is that if you can't even get an agent excited about your book, why would they want it?
All writers who are
This is all great advice. Most of the time when doing this research, one agent is pretty much the same as another. It would be great to snag one, any one. But sometimes it happens during this research that you find THE ONE. The agent that you know is for you. They started writing when you did, majored in the same thing as you, enjoy the same books as you, feel about their family the way you do, have the same goals for their writers that you have for your career, and THEY REP WHAT YOU WRITE! Bells ring, angels sing, and you KNOW this agent is for you. Your heart pounds as you carefully amend your query letter, tailoring it for this special agent. You send it off with trembling fingers and wait. Anxiously wait for the response.
And it comes, two days later, with a rejection.
How can this be? How could the love not be mutual?
Here's why. Because the agent didn't research you they way you did him/her. They don't know that you would be best friends if you lived around the corner, and probably it's better that way. It might take the objectivity out of the game (there is objectivity, right?). They might like YOU so much that it's hard to take a good look at your book. And that wouldn't be good for you, in the long run.
So. Don't fall in love. Speed date all the agents you want, notice the ones that make sparks, but for heaven's sake, keep your heart out of it.
Don't forget you can watch my interview on July 4 and 5 right here!
*Image from writersrelief.com