Please talk me down from the ledge
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My agent called 2 weeks ago (smack in the middle of BEA, so I understand that may have complicated things) to let me know someone had made an offer on my non-fiction proposal. It was a low-money offer from an academic publisher, but a GREAT editor who I would be honored to work with, and I think would really champion my book (which is on a controversial subject) - plus she made an offer within 3 weeks of receiving the proposal, as opposed to all the other editors who had received it 5 months ago and still hadn't bitten. Anyway - she gave a few days to some other editors who had shown interest to counter; no one did (big surprise, they've had the thing for months now). She then went back to the editor trying to make it a little better of an offer (more $$, some other small things - rights and stuff). That was over a week ago now, and I haven't heard anything. I emailed my agent on Monday and got a an email back just saying she'd be in touch as soon as there was news. I am going crazy. Could we have lost the deal by negotiating? Does that HAPPEN?? I figured they would just say "no, take it or leave it," and at least give us the option... but to hear NOTHING? I'm going absolutely, stark raving mad. Please talk me down. I'm so new to all of this. Journalism is such an easier game.
  • Thanks, everyone. I really appreciate all the comments. ::taking deep breaths and trying to focus on the positive::
  • Okay...I don't really know much about this since my book was self-published and as long as my credit card was out they would do whatever I asked...but I do know about the law of attraction and can recognize a person in need of some reassurance when I hear it. Here's what I'm thinking...they either are still interested and have not had time to re-look at things yet (often what we see as a huge deal that should be looked at immediately is rather low on their priority list and therefore pushed aside until they can get to it) or they are going to change their mind because the Universe has something bigger and better coming down the pipe for you. In both scenarios it makes sense to me to take a deep breath, step back from the ledge and focus on all the little things you love in life (the perfect cup of tea, comfy clothes, kids singing...) until you start to feel a sense of calm settling in. No matter what happens you got an offer and one that involved a really good editor. That's something to be proud of and no one can ever take that away! Dig deep for the confidence and poise that likely set you on this path in the first place...the ledge is a cold and lonely place to be...come in where it is warm and wait in comfort :)
  • I am going to talk you down: no, you did not lose the deal by asking for some better terms and a bit more money. My agent did the same thing with my novel, which sold to Crown/Random House, and I had to wait about a week to hear back that the editor was in fact going to pump up the deal for us to better the competition. But that whole week, I was convinced something was wrong. My agent wasn't calling--no news was BAD news in my mind, except that it wasn't. Like with you, it was the beginning of the summer and things were a bit slower, plus usually editors have to clear their offers/counter offers with the person above them...don't worry my dear, trust your agent, she will call when she has news. I am sure she's biting her fingernails, too, trying to make sure you get the best deal possible, which you will. I have never heard of an agent trying to negotiate for more money and an editor pulling out; they'll stay the course, but unless their outbidded, they won't just say, "the he** with this project". These things take time. You will get your deal and it will either be the same as you expected or more. xoxoxoxoxoxox Rebecca
  • I've been in the same position for 6 months. Hearing nothing is the hardest part, and it happens even with an agent. Welcome to the ledge. {{you}}