On Friday we got a turn down from a publishing agent, we’ve read a lot about agents and how to put proposals to them. There are many of these on the internet if you want to have a look. They give great advice about chosing the right agent, what the agent is looking for how to make your proposal all that kind of thing, and believe me we put a lot of effort into chosing the right one for the type of book we have. However despite the effort we put in,in this respect, not every agent seems to put the same effort into looking at your proposal. We always send a SAE to ensure we get a reply. What you find is that some agents look at your proposal properly and you get a very nice “beetle” letter, (I’ll explain this concept in a later post), saying that your book is simply not the type of book for them, or that they do not have a space in their list. Sometimes you even get some actual feedback about your book which is often a “wow they actually read it moment”!. However sometimes all you get is a complement slip or a very short terse letter which implies you have wasted their time. For this we have the “Black book of doom”. This is actually a folder where we place the worst turn downs we’ve had. Yes agents and publishers we are keeping a record and should Hannah ever be in a position that means she is being chased by agents we will point to the Black book of Doom and say, “not a chance mate!” I would like to make one plea to all you agents and publishers out there, we don’t mind being turned down in fact we expect it and we know you get hundreds of books sent to you, but please, please, please give the impression that you have at least had a cursory glance at the manuscript we send you…. or it’s the Black book of Doom for you.