Thursday, January 17, 2008

My Morning

Ever wonder exactly what agents do all day? Below is a running diary I kept of my morning. It was a bit busier than normal, but I think it accurately represents what we do.

8:45am – Checked email at home and responded to e-queries before leaving for work (9 rejections).

9:15am – Starbucks. Delicious.

9:25am – Arrived at the office. Responded to Client A’s questions regarding offer received yesterday.

10:00am – Submitted mystery to editor via email after querying about project yesterday.

10:05am – Responded to e-queries (7 rejections).

10:20am – Spoke with Agent Colleague A about preemptive offers.

10:40am – E-mailed with Client B about book clubs and her new book.

10:45am – Reviewed amended contract sent by publisher for legal client.

11:15am – Wrote new French subagent about a project that I sold last week.

11:35am – Updated Client A regarding offer and possible auction.

11:40am – Spoke with Agent Colleague B about audio books.

11:45am – Read Publisher’s Lunch.

11:47am – Began reading requested partial.

11:53am – Received offer via email for Client C. Called client and left message to discuss. Returned to reading requested partial.

12:42pm – Spoke with Client D about phone conversation he had with an editor interested in client’s project.

12:46pm – Called editors reviewing Client C’s project and let them know that an offer was received.

12:57pm – Responded to e-queries (3 rejections)

1:03pm – Posted a blog entry.

1:08pm – Went to Chipotle for lunch.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

I enjoy reading "Day In The Life" type blog posts. Thanks for posting this!

Anonymous said...

I'm dying of suspense: what did you think of the partial? (No, it's not mine.)

Jonathan Lyons said...

Undecided...

Heidi the Hick said...

What do you do if you get to the end of the requested partial, and you still feel undecided???

Or, does this not often happen because by that time it's shown itself to be a keeper or not?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Well, in this case I didn't finish the partial, and so will wait until I'm done to make any decisions.

I want to read the end of the selection, so its not a no yet, but I'm not exactly jumping out of my chair for it.

If I finish and am undecided about reading more I'll sleep on it for a night, but usually this means no.

Arjay said...

Your day looks fairly full. That's good. One question though. How can you stand to drink Starbucks when there are so many better coffee places?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Well, there might be cheaper places, but not better places, at least on my way to work.

Robin S. said...

Interesting peak at your morning.
Thanks.

Anonymous said...

That was really interesting, and I'm not being sardonic. As one who is in the process of seeking an agent, and I suspect I speak for many, it's great to see how you guys spend your days, because certainly an outrageous portion of mine is spent wondering what and when you are reading! I really appreciate you (and the other agents who blog) taking the time to tell us what you are up to, what the business is like, et cetera. I wonder if once I do have an agent if I'll lurk editors with the same interest?

And I have to agree about Starbucks, yuck. I just don't get it. Their coffee--the actual coffee--is terrible! But maybe the frothy fun drinks are better? I'm a starving wannabe author--can't afford those. :)

Josephine Damian said...

Me? I'm thinking about the client who has some great news waiting on the answering machine.

What about the rest of the day?

Also, did those 7 e-queries you made quick work of at the office come after you left your house? Or were they 7 more that you hadn't gotten to in your early AM purge?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Well, I think the easiest way to describe my afternoon is that I never got a chance to read more partials. It was definitely hectic.

As for the e-queries, when I left my home I had responded to them all, and so any other e-queries were new.

jschmidt said...

Jonathan,

Thanks for the great message giving us a peak at your day...regarding the ~20 rejections you mentioned for the e-queries...were they all rejected or did you request some partials?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Those were all rejections. I did request a partial today though, from a query sent to me earlier in the week.

Anonymous said...

Curious to know how many new clients you take on each year (or what percentage of your client list are new each year). The agency I'm with has about 150 clients and they say they take on 2 percent new each year, so that's less than 2 new clients per year. Is that about par for the course? Or does it vary?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Well, I took on four new clients last year, but I had the room to do so because I parted ways with two authors who I spent too much time on, with too little dividend.

I'd guess the average is 2-3 for an agent with a full list, but it depends on a variety of factors, including what the agency's
maximum capacity is in terms of clients, how many agents and assistants they have, how long the agents have been in business, an agent's particular style, and the writers themselves (i.e. how much support each author needs).

Anonymous said...

I always find it interesting to see statistics on agent blogs listing queries, partials and offers of representation. Thanks for posting the information!

Something I've always wondered--how do you decide which partial to read first? Do you read them in the order you requested them, or is it more based on your mood and what you want to read first?

The Quoibler said...

Am I the only odd-woman-out who wants to know more about "Chipotle"? Sounds like a fabulous lunch spot... please dish!

Angelique

Jonathan Lyons said...

I read partials in the order that I get them, unless an author receives an offer of representation and then I'll look at their material immediately and get back to them.

Chipotle Burrito...

A Paperback Writer said...

Wow. That sounds TONS less stressful than my average morning (starts at 4:00 AM and by 1:00 PM I've dealt with over 100 kids in 4 different classes.)
Wanna trade?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Wow, capital letters and everything!

Sarah J Clark said...

what i wanna know is ... what'd you do after lunch?

Jonathan Lyons said...

Same stuff I do in the morning!

Kasthu said...

And all of this was only up until lunch? Wow. As someone looking for a job in publishing, and who wants to be an gent herself one day, it's always good to know about what a typical agent does on a day to day basis.

Kristan said...

Any day involving Chipotle is a great day!