Today, if you haven't guessed from the title, is Unofficial Official Agent Day. This little baby is the brainchild of the uber-kewl Kody Keplinger, who has amazing talk-like-a-gangsta-skillz, along with a book concept that rocks the freaking casbah. The idea is that agents tend to get a lot of... well, CRAP. And it's Undeserved Crap. So a group of us wanted to take the time to show our agents how much we appreciate them.
On the count of three, everyone say, "Awwwww!"
But seriously? My agent, Kate Schafer Testerman, aka Daphne Unfeasible, is so darned kewl. Let me tell you why.
Kate sends me links for zombie plates, because she thinks I'll like them, and she's right! She knows to wish me a happy Halloween, because she knows it's my favorite holiday. She remembers the little things about me that only my close friends keep on top of, and that makes me feel awfully darned good. While we're in a business relationship, she keeps it friendly and low-key, and that's just how I like it. Some people like hoity-toity, but I'm not one of them.
She likes the name Daphne, which is one of my favorites. There's an unfortunate corrolary to this, though. Now I can't have a Daphne in my books. I already have a Kate, and I'm just lucky that I didn't make her a sniveling weenie.
She's fabulous at all the things that agents are supposed to do. She answers questions at ridiculous hours so I don't have to wait, negotiates one hell of a contract, and helps keep me sane. I suspect that this last one is harder than all her other duties put together.
The fact is that publishing is a hard business. Agents aren't in control of all this (see Undeserved Crap above), and I think they're affected by the lunacy just as much as writers are. It's important to have a good agent as well as an agent that's a good fit for you, because that makes the interminable waits, submission purgatory, and all the other publishing weirdness bearable. I am lucky enough to have both of these things.
(Note that I'm NOT blaming editors for things either! If you want to sling Deserved Crap, I think it needs to go to the amorphous God of Publishing, because it seems like a general process problem to me more than anything else. Editors get Undeserved Crap too.)
So thanks, Kate. Have some fabulous virtual shoes.
There's plenty more Unofficial Official agent love spreading through cyberspace today, kind of like a fungus only not really. Check out Lisa and Laura for the massive linkage.