At first it starts off with an old, familiar story. My agent signed me in October of 2018. He raved about my book, said he loved it. My last email from him was in April 2019, where he gave me a list of publishers and editors where he had subbed it. One had already rejected. The other seven thanked him and said they'd get to it as soon as they could. But that's the last I've heard from him. I email him every couple of months--no answer. I've called him twice and left voice mails, but he doesn't respond.
I know, I know, you've covered this thing over and over. I should send him a registered letter telling him that unless he contacts me, I want out.
But here is where the story gets different (well, at least in my mind).
This man has already done so much for me. After my initial query he responded with a revise and resubmit, plus about 1500 words of detailed criticisms and suggestions. I read them, and without a doubt they were brilliant, spot-on. They showed he really put a lot of (uncompensated) time into my manuscript and grasped the essence of what it needed. It took me ten months to revise, but the more I rewrote, the more excited I got, because it just kept getting better and better. And he must have agreed, because after rereading it he made me an enthusiastic offer of representation.
And then we get to April of last year and the looooong silence.
Yes, I'm angry and frustrated, but in my mind I owe him a whole lot more than he owes me. He's kind, he's smart, he knows books and I want to keep him. It occurs to me that he's ghosting me because these seven editors are not responding to him and it distresses him to have to tell me that.
I spent a large part of yesterday following up on submissions and it's very frustrating when editors don't respond.
But you're focused on the wrong thing here.
Your career is stalled.
Let's look at that sentence again:
Your career is stalled.
How long are you willing to have that go on?
If editors aren't responding, he should be talking to you about Plan B.
Plan B can be a lot of things.
Gratitude and respect are wonderful, but neither of those are helping you right now.
This is your call. The only person who can decide what to do is you.
YOUR CAREER IS STALLED.
Are you planning to live to be 200 so you have all this time to squander?
You do NOT owe him anything more than what you've done: stay in touch, ask for updates.
If he's not replying, that's on him NO MATTER WHAT.
Most of us know editors can be bottomless pits. It does NOT excuse ghosting a client.
Misplaced loyalty has kept more people in bad relationships than rent controlled apartments in NYC.
You've done everything you should.
Being grateful doesn't come at this steep a price.