Friday, August 03, 2012
Friday Night at the Question Emporium
I'd like to know about revise/resubmit etiquette.
Say a writer has received extensive notes from an agent and her reader. This agent would be her first choice, so writer is working her bum off to rewrite. Now the tricky bit: IF the agent decides to pass on rewrite, author does what? Resubmit to other agents who sent personalized rejections on partials? And what should be said? "This MS is totally rewritten based on notes from superstar agent who now has rejected it" doesn't sound too positive.
I've heard some writers say they start resubmitting to all agents at the same time, including agent who gave notes. This sounds kind of below-board.
There's planning ahead, and then there's worrying ahead. You're worrying ahead here. However, I'm glad to help you torment yourself into a tizzy so here's the answer:
You do NOT reference any rewrites done for an agent, or at the agent's suggestion. You are not being sneaky or underhanded when you do so. I (and my ilk) assume you've gotten LOTS of critical feedback on your novel by the time we see it. We don't need to know from whom. In fact, we like to pretend it sprang fully formed from your fingertips onto the page and you can write another one just like it tomorrow.
There is no First Class and Coach distinction on resubmits. There's not even a boarding group priority number. Send it to the agents you want to represent you. In any order you want. You owe agents nothing at this point but the best work you can offer.