The perks (really!) of not having an agent yet

For most writers, getting an agent seems like the first major step towards getting published–unless, of course, you’re one of a growing number of writers–Hi Helen!–who bravely decide to self-publish. (Speaking of agents, huge congratulations to Elaine for just signing with an awesome agent! You can read her story here).

Me? Well, I still dream about getting that agent. So far, of course, this has been an exercise in grace as I learn to deal with rejection. But someday . . .

In the meantime, I’m trying to remind myself of all the reasons why being unagented is a good place to be. Believe it or not, there are a few reasons.

1. Writing is still just about having fun. I don’t have to worry about how many copies my book is selling, or whether my next book can live up to the hype.

2. I have a lot of freedom to experiment. I was reminded of this the other day, when I finished revisions on the manuscript I’ve devoted the last 20 months to, and started on a shiny new idea. I was a little blown away by the response when I brought this new manuscript to critique group. It’s a new genre for me–something very different from the contemporary MG I’d been working on. Almost everyone who’s read this new piece has commented on the voice–that it’s so me. Since I don’t have an agent yet, or a brand identity, I’m free to make these kind of experimental leaps in order to discover what kind of writing style and genre really fits me. Of course, professional writers can and do make these transformations, but I imagine it’s much harder to do once you become known for a certain style of writing.

What other reasons can you think of to celebrate being (as of yet) unagented?

3 thoughts on “The perks (really!) of not having an agent yet

  1. Great post, Rosalyn! I think there are definite good things about not having an agent, yet.

    I mean, of course, I'd love to have an agent. But when I think about how that would actually be right now…pregnant and with 5 kids needing me and then having major deadlines and someone expecting me to produce something in a timely matter….oy! I don't know if I could handle that right now.

    I like that I can work on my craft without feeling like it's one more thing I HAVE to do. I'm moving forward slowly, but surely. And I'm fine with that.


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