A New York based literary Agent has contacted me by email about my book, 'A Fairly Secret Army', and asked if I would be interested in having it published in paper back - what do you think?
Check them out first, are the legit agency--look at the list of scam agencies at the SFWA.
Agents do not contact you and tell you your book will be published in paperback; the agent does not know what format the publisher will want to use.
Check out Editors and Preditors for detailed information.
Well firstly congratulations. Like many on here I would advice caution, and if presented with a contract get it looked over by a professional. It's exciting, but you have to be level headed when negotiating.
Of course, to make your book even better, why not have an Englishman "ahem" write a few 'sentences' to comment on your book...*grin*
Seriously though I wish you all the best - you really are putting yourself out there for a lot of critism - but from what I have read of yours, you just want to be honest, no matter how hard it is...
I think you should. why would you even ask it in a forum? But lots of congratulations!
First, check them out to make sure they are legit. they could be after your idea and want to steal it, which will deal with a bunch of copyright issues.
I would also be concerned since they asked in paperback. Most novels are first published in hardcover, and published in paperback about a year later from the initial release date!
congrats! be cautious! and hope its legit so everyone can read it!
i think if you are asking that question here you need to research the company.
i also think you need to read any and all fine print and considering you are seeking advice here i also think that before you sign anything you need to spend 30 bucks and have a lawyer translate the paperwork for you.
again, if you are asking advice on the internet then you need to pay someone else to determine just how legitimate this whole thing is.
there is nothing wrong with having an editor.
they will can make corrections and fix things--for example, replace words like "dribble" with "drivel" and reread what you wrote in case you accidentally missed a word or something like that
speak to a lawyer first then worry about everything else, okay?
Forget paperback. Have them publish it on scroll!
Just kidding....Go for it! Be extra careful to read the ultra fine print though.
Congrats, go for it, sink a guiness for me.. I'm well thirsty
Oh wow! if this offer is legit then congrats, pop the champagne (or whatever) and have a bloody good knees up! My fingers are crossed
Congrats on this great news. I hope that everything is on the up and up. Paperback is fantastic. In this economy who has the 24.95 to 35.00, to pay for a hardcover book.
In fact make sure that it goes into digital format so people like me can download to our e-readers.
Wow, that is super news!! Like others have said before me, just be sure to read the fine print and check them out before signing anything. Hope it works out well for you!! That's very exciting!!! Keep us informed!
Wahoo theirishobserver!!! EXCELLENT news.
Miracles do happen but as others have said - (and I know that you will) check the fine print first an agent is quite different to a publisher!
Yes, do check them out to make sure they're not a scammer - they do exist. Otherwise, congrats!
That is fantastic new Irish.
I agree with sentiments above though, be incredibly careful of potential scams.
If this book hits the shelves (or the virtual shelves of Amazon), I will be sure to buy it, read it, and then write a hubpage promoting it.
Thanks everyone - I had to run off after I posted this thread yesterday - the agent is legitimate (previously worked for Vantage Press NY but now works with a mainstream publishing house) - but I am not going to rush - I had published my book on Hub pages, without thinking beyond that point, I will now want to spend time improving its content - a contract was emailed to me last night for consideration - I dont move that fast and I am reading the small print as suggested by many - I understand that there is a big Irish community in the US and content such as mine would be of interest - however, my book was never intended for the book shelves - so lots to think about - I will continue writing for now and will let you know how things develope - thanks again for all your comments
The Irish contingent (well, people with Irish heritage) is particularly strong in New York and Boston.
Do you mean an editor? What is the press?
An agent sells manuscripts to a publisher and takes a commission on royalties, they do not actually publish the book
Do you know how they found out about your book? Its always a good point of reference to find out and will help you if you do decide to go ahead and publish as to some marketing places you can do on top of what the publisher will do for you.
Well done as well.
Has anyone here published a book and if so did you go through an agent Just pondering this contract
Hello again theirishobserver!
I'm a published author. My book was published by the the publishing house rather than through an agent. Actually I was asked to write the book and we entered into a contract.
The situation you have is a little different to mine, but if I can help in any way, please feel free to email me.
This is exciting news.
ryankett - indeed - there is a great deal to consider - Irish America has traditionally a cosy view of Ireland - I dont think my book paints that picture - any advice would be appreciated
Man thats a great thing Irish, hope it works out good for you.
tmmason - looks good but have to give it clear consideration - many questions to be asked and I have sent these by email - I will let you know how it works out - for now I am being cautious
thanks travelespresso - I recieved what appears to be a standard draft contract to read over - I have read over it and sent back some questions - my main concern would be losing editoring control - it could end up just another romantic novel about Ireland - I wrote the book for educational purposes here on Hub pages and I would not want it to turn into a light read for Irish/Americans if you know what I mean
Yep. I know exactly what you mean. The thing about publishing with a publishing house is that you often do lose some of the control. I did.
Sometimes their views are right (even though you may not see it at the time) simply because of their expertise in the market place. However, I was able to hold firm on many points I thought were important so it still feels like its "my" book.
Maybe the decision you need to make is how much do you want to be a published author (in more main stream media I mean). I say that because getting a book to the required standard is often extremely time consuming and every heading, word, comma, footnote etc is examined in fine detail. Some have this patience and some don't.
Although it was hard work and at times extremely frustrating, nothing beats that feeling of receiving the very first copy off the press!
I certainly hope that does not happen Irish.
The Irish Americans themselves I think are a pretty straight forward lot that realize not everything in Ireland is roses and sunshine all the time.
I think the American media is the one trying to turn it into what it is not.
I will be honest here. Your "agent" previously worked for a self-publishing company.b Are you taking his/her word about the "mainstream" publisher? They approached you rather than you approaching them. These are red flags.
Be *very sure* that this offer is for real, non-fee-charging, advance paying, royalty paying publication with chain bookstore distribution.
Sorry, but it doesn't smell right to me.
Thanks Ohma, travelexpresso and psycheskinner - I will proceed with caution - psycheskinner - the agent has explained that they are not a published but have a published who would be interested in publishing my book - as we approach 2016 there will be a great interest in Ireland among the Irish/American community as it will be 100 years since the 1926 Rising that lead to the formation of the Irish Republic and of course the creation of Northern ireland (still under British rule) - so I can see that there would be a market - but the editing rights would be a problem
I hope that this works out for you - I have a strong interest in Irish history.
I have never had a book published, only ghostwritten ones, so I am long way from being an expert.
Just a couple of notes - if your agent will be looking for a publisher, it is a good idea to unpublish any extracts of the book you have online. Publishers get very touchy about such things
If you have not already copyrighted your work officially, now is the time to do so - I am not sure what the process is in Ireland, but you should be able to find out easily enough; it does not cost much in the grand scheme of things. You have poured your heart and soul into this book - it might even be worth asking a lawyer to look over the contract for you, in case there are any red flags
I reckon you're savvy Irish, I doubt you're about to walk into something blindfolded. Trust your instincts. For my part I wish you massive success. You deserve it right enough. You're a quiet voice and being given a bigger platform would be fantastic. I sincerely wish you the very best
frogdropping - many thanks for your considered comment - I will indeed proceed with caution and then hopefully it will work ok
sufiddreamer - many thanks for your comments - I take your advice on board - I wrote this book purely with the intentions of setting for ward my own ideas that are in some instances supported by other writers - never expected anyone to pick up on it in this way - thanks again for your advice
Which publisher are they suggesting? I hate to be a downer but being cold-called by an agent whose previous job was working for a vanity press, and who already has a publisher set up? I would suggest being *very* skeptical. This is not how legit agents operate, pretty much ever.
Irish, it's hard enough to find an agent, but when an agent finds you, better do your homework and check for hidden fees and costs to you. I hope it all works out well for you. If you lose some editorial power, so what? To be published is fantastic. The editors generally know what will sell.
Congrats Irish.... this must feel like such a special moment for you. I was just going to say what Sufi has already said - that is, be careful about unpublishing your work on line, as this is one of the objections that could be raised. (I myself have been contacted by a few agents interested in my work, and this is one of their requirements i.e. what I write for them, I cannot publish here or online). Take care and best of luck with this!
Many congrats, Irish! Sounds as if you're getting best advice from our friends here, and I hope great things to proceed from your contact.
On a side note, I have a new music release this month with a large US music publisher. The process is not unlike book publishing. Rather grueling at times with lots of editorial considerations, etc.
Please keep us posted.
OMG... Well done Irish! As Marisa and others said, scrutinise the small print and check out for scamming.
For scamming info. on agents and publishers alike, try looking up Preditors & Editors, and Writer Beware. You'll find lots of information there.
This is a wonderful win and the wonderful thing about a wonderful win is that it opens you up to so many choices - now that's freedom!!!! Congratulations!
KeithTax - thanks for your advice - I am checking everything - no stone will be left unturned I also note that Myownworld says she has been contacted by agents I will do my home work
Another thought. Do you have a Society of Authors in your country? We do in mine and they were EXTREMELY helpful.
For the price of the membership (you cannot join until you either have a book published or a contract in hand), their lawyer looked over my contract and made several recommendations. They also had a booklet on publishing and key points to look for in a contract and what they mean.
On the basis of their comments I was able to negotiate several concessions.
Even though I have great respect for my lawyer, it was excellent to use their's because of their specialist subject knowledge. Invaluable in my view.
Irish, I'd echo some of the concerns already expressed.
Vantage Press is one of the original "vanity presses". In other words, rip-off merchants. This agent's experience with Vantage Press isn't a positive - and he couldn't have been an "agent" there, because an agent never works for or "with" a publishing house. The whole point of an agent is that he hawks your work around many publishers.
Right now, you should only be looking at the agent's contract - which won't have any mention of editorial rights etc. Here's a standard one.
If you've been given a contract that has any reference to actual editing or publishing, then that can only be directly with a publisher. In which case, the agent is misrepresenting himself - he's not an agent, he's a salesman. So I'd be doubly suspicious.
Wow, see id instantly think, "Awesome. Do it." but after reading everyones responses it's probably best that I'm commenting last.
Suppose it's best you look into the agent/publisher person first. Then go have a ham sandwich and a packet of Tayto Cheese and Onion and then maybe, just maybe, think about it.
Personally I'd jump at the chance to get published but then I'm a fool.
i have an agent through writer's literary agency. i had to contact them and fill out forms before they even wanted to see my story. how did this new york agent hear about your book? what percentage are they charging you? mine is charging 10%. have they mentioned to you about getting a critique done or a full scale edit? my agent wanted a critique and it cost me $79. so make sure you get the full information up front. also my agent is wanting to sell my manuscript at the chinese book expo and it will cost me $248 to have it displayed there. so make sure you are geting total costs and where their markets might be. you can never ask too many questions in cases like this. my contract also states that my agent doesn't get paid until i do. i have a six month contract so i'm pretty sure my book will be sold by then. some companies offer a contract good for a year. but i figured if they can't sell it in six months they're not much of an agent and i can always find a new one if it's not sold. so think everything through very carefully.
Oooh, I would be careful with that one too. They "represented" me for a while. But real prestigious agencies won't make you pay a dime. They will even give you a sign on gift from the publisher.
Lecie - Sorry to be blunt, but:
Cut your losses and please don't give these charlatans any more of your money. They are crooks, plain and simple, and will sting for a lot of money with little intention of selling your book. You may also compromise your copyright, so that genuine agents and publishers will not touch your manuscript. The owners of that site are habitual offenders, I am afraid
After the Chinese Expo comes the editing fees, then the proofreading, then the manuscript preparation.....
They are parasites who take advantage of people's dreams
@Irish: I might take you up on the Taytos - I am happy to send some Greek goodies in return, if you have any requests
You have the right idea in asking the HP collective for advice - there is a wealth of experience on this site
Don't forget copy fees and postage fees.
It's the same old racket, decade after decade.
Forgot those, Shades
To anyone wanting to find agents, submit manuscripts etc:
At the very least, check writers.net before committing to anything. Here is a good thread about the Writer's Literary Agency.
http://www.writers.net/forum/read.php?a … p;t=170643
Agents do not take any money until a publishing deal is signed and sealed, and your advance is on its way to your bank..
It is as simple as that
Thanks Irish - I will get on with that tomorrow!
Irish, a giant congrats from me too. I think its great news. I'm trying to remember the name of the Irish writer who wrote a book about how she found herself a London agent who then put her manuscript out to tender to the big publishing houses and she ended up getting upfront fees of something like £50,000!
She wrote romance,funny day-to-day type stuff...off to check google to see if I can remember her name...not Marian Keyes but I love her stuff...oh can't remember. Got her books in the house but no internet access there at the moment since a storm knocked out the transitter last week.
Anyway, thats the sort of stuff dreams are made of, eh?
Cecil - the reason I asked in the forums is because there are many experienced writers here - I started writing on the net only a few short months ago - if I want a tooth out I go to a dentist - if I want advice on writing I ask the professionals on Hubs - and I dont even need health insurance for that
lol, the hubpages is a great place for writing advice i myself have been given some excellent writing advice here. though i will not consider myself a professional until i'm published it's nice to be on a site with so many writing professionals for all the wisdom they have to offer.
Best of Success to you in every area of publishing your book. I will maintain positive thought for you and this begin the real deal and blessed with abundance. Congrats.
sufiddreamer - I would have no problem posting cheese and onion potato crips to you - just send me a contact address by email - a local shop or something - but make sure they know that a parcel is comig in the post -
Sufideamer - do not hesitate - I will without hesitation have tayto on the way to you
This has been a very informative and interesting thread - I am taking everything into consideration - thanks - Irish
Hy Irish Observer, I was emailed by a person posing as an editor, and I could not verify the person's identity, as there were too many false leads attached. Plus the person ended up looking for payment. So I put that one down to pure waste of time.
There are other editors however, more real and so why not explore the prospect of getting a better one, if you have doubts about this editor. Some editors talk like they are really publishers, when actually they are not. In many of the writing magazines in the UK, there are some scams going round whereby people will "publish" you for a price, and many people here have related some of the tactics they use. Don't fall into that trap. Make sure the name of the person you are dealing with is already well known. Ask what other writers have they / has he worked with. What publishers? Who out there knows that editor? That editor should come up on the radar screen of others like you, and people in the industry. And ask yourself, when an editor approaches you out of the blue, who stands to gain the most? And it real or too good to be true? Use your gut instinct.
Best of luck getting published.
The agent in this case is legitimate - however - I have sent forward many questions mainly on the advice that I got from fellow Hubbers - my book which is published on Hub pages was published for educational purposes I do not want its content watered down by a main stream publisher purely for commercial gain - If I allow editorial control go to someone else then my book simply becomes dribble - I am waiting on clarification on a number of matters - if I dont get that clarification then No Deal
I am very happy for you IRISH< I hope you can get the deal you want, CHEERS,
You are a good writer and your writings always put things into proper perspectives,
Thank you - Prettydarkhorse - I am just finishing a hub on prisons - it has taken me at least one week to write - very tired -
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