And only about one of every 25–30 manuscripts I request will result in me signing a new client.
Now, by those figures alone, you can see it takes a substantial amount of reading time on my part just to find a single author to add to my roster. See, I have a sliiight handbag, uh, problem, so if I don’t find your fabulous manuscript in the slush pile and sell it, I instead find myself standing at the windows of the Kate Spade store on 5th Avenue, rubbing my gums and hissing, “Just a taste … And OK, handbag fetish aside, the real reason I’m always excited to dive into the pile is simple: I’m a fan of brilliant work.
If not, I am not Barbara Poelle—I am Enid Snarklefritz and I have anger management issues.
A few ground rules heading in (imagine a bespectacled man in an ill-fitting brown suit standing over me and dictating in a nasally voice): These answers are mine and mine alone, and I do not presume to speak for the industry at large (or for WD).
Take what you’re about to read in the spirit in which it’s intended: as one agent’s honest take on the subjects at hand.