Thoughts on Matters of Size

Recently, one of the literary agents who is fairly high on my “List” moved to a new agency. I can mention this because agents move around a lot, and by the time I get that query letter written, I’m sure every last one will think I mean them. (Which I do, BTW.)

Moving on, though… the two agencies are very different. One is much bigger than the other. And one of them “specializes” in the area of… well, my manuscript. So, in short, it looks to me like one of them is more personal, and the other is more powerful. The difference between the two agencies’ approach is fairly obvious, when you look at the way they present the same person.

One bio is long, detailed, and funny. And the other is much more… business, business, business.

So, there’s my moment of clarity for the week.

I’m crawling back in my research hole to think about how much the agency specs matter to me, and what my ideal agency would be, although the truth is, that’s probably a gut-reaction type decision, where I already know the answer, and now I’m just figuring out the reasons why.

So, what are your preferences? Small and personal or big and powerful? What makes you feel that way?


  1. Reply

    I’m curious to see what others will say–I’ve never worked with an agency, but I would think that I would prefer small and personal because I like working with personable people who have time to answer my questions, etc.

  2. Reply

    I tend to query the big agencies first. I like seeing long lists of sales to major publishers with titles I recognize, because that means my book could be one of those too, if they represented me. That doesn’t mean I’d be unhappy with a smaller agency, though. In my research, if I find an agent at a smaller place who I really like on a personal level, I’ll query them too. I guess it depends, but my very first queries are usually to the big ones.

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