Today I offered representation to someone. They had the good sense to ask me for the protocol of how to handle other outstanding submissions of the project in question. Having been on the opposite side of the fence (and gotten burned), I was inclined to be as forthright as possible about this. I suppose not all agents would be.
Here’s what I recommend, should you find yourself in the enviable situation of having representation offered to you while other agents are still considering your work as well. An agent who is really interested in you will be reasonable about you comporting yourself in a professional fashion. You should take the time to contact the other agents and inform them that you have been offered representation before you make any final decisions. Give them a reasonable time limit to respond (in this case, we agreed that the author would update me on Friday as to the situation). That said, don’t pull stunts such as playing them off each other either. The agent community is remarkably small, all things considered, and that sort of behavior will get noticed.
So, at the end of the day, I’m in the position of having to wait. (Pick me – I really like this book!) But I feel all sorts of moral goodness for having taken the high road.
Anyone have any different questions about submission protocol?