Nathan Bransford, Author


Monday, October 15, 2007

Before You Add Random Agents To Your Mailing List...

I was all set to do a real live blog post today when, for reasons known only to PG&E, tech support, and the Internet gods, my web connection went out for most of the day and thus I am now aggressively clearing out my Inbox. Hellooooo Monday!

So instead of a blog post in which I solve the global warming issue while mediating the Spencer/Heidi and Lauren Conrad feud with one hand tied around my back, I'm afraid I'll have to, well, quickly complain about something and call it a blog post.

And here I had such high hopes for the day...

Anyway, individuals I do not know have lately thought it a good idea to add me to their e-mail announcement lists, and so I am very regularly receiving e-mails about articles appearing in magazines and am basically updated whenever these individuals breathe in the direction of an online lit journal.

People. Look. My Inbox sees more action than a fish at a polar bear convention. I don't need any more e-mails than I already receive.

If I know you, yes, absolutely, I want to hear about what you're up to, send those announcements along and I appreciate it. If, however, you're adding agents to your spam I mean mailing list willy-nilly, just remember this: no one has ever spammed their way to representation.

Also, if you're thinking of calling an agent, Jonathan Lyons has some thoughts for you.

Enjoy the Monday and back tomorrow with, well, something I hope!






20 comments:

original bran fan said...

When I had a small story appear in an online 'zine, I hesitated before e-mailing my own agent, the one who actually represents me. I thought, "Gee, will my agent even care?" In the end, I did let my agent know, and didn't hear back for several days, and I figured that was my answer right there.

And this was my own agent. To do this to an agent who does not represent me? Unthinkable.

Nathan Bransford said...

I agree, OBF, it's pretty unthinkable.

I absolutely want to hear from my clients and am so excited to see when they've placed things, and I really want to make a big, huge, massive, colossal distinction between clients and friends and published authors I know on the one hand (who I really want to hear from) and people who are just adding me to a vast e-mail list on the other. One is essential, the other is just rude.

Words In Words Out said...

Who's pepople? :)

Nathan Bransford said...

WIWO-

Sometimes I stutter.

Neptoon said...

Aloha,

Okay...let me get this straight...you don't want to hear from me if I'm a regular contributer to the Pupu Platter section of the Garden Island Gazette. That I got!

BUT...when we become friends...you'll want me to send you my recipes when they appear in the Hilo Hattie Bake Sale brochure?

That IS friendly. I can't wait to meet you.

Nathan Bransford said...

Neptoon-

You got it, although please remember that even friends don't make friends eat poi.

Neptoon said...

Deal!

Marlene Dotterer said...

I like poi:)

Seriously, this is happening to me a lot, too. As a small business owner, I'll hand my card out to people, especially at a networking event, where a lot of card-trading is going on. Next thing I know, I'm getting some stranger's email newsletter or weekly announcements.

Does it never occur to these people to politely ask if I want to receive their damn newsletter? 'Cause you know - I don't.

Dave F. said...

When I was working, there were times when I could receive 200 emails in one day Just for business purposes. These were days when I had to schedule appointments and it happened 4 times a year. I had to clear those up before lunch and still do the days work. Most days I struggled through 15 to 25 emails a day above and beyond the regular work I had to get done.

My boss routinely received 50 to 100 a day not counting the email from the 30 or 40 people who worked for him. Some of those asked for 20 page reports.

If you are ever faced with a mountain of email (that is a days worth of work) everyday, day-after-day, joke-of-the-day, silly thoughts, personal baggage, and all that extra stuff is unwanted.

Newsletters are nice for family and close friends, but not for business acquaintances.

Kimber An said...

Hmm, I've seen salmon at Polar Bear conventions. It ain't pretty. No wonder those poor things just spawn and die.

Angelle Trieste said...

Eeeek!!!!!! I can't believe people think it's a great idea to spam agents...And here I thought mass-equerying agents was pretty bad...(you know those emails, where you see hundreds of email addresses and wonder why they bothered...)

sex scenes at starbucks said...

Silly writers. All we have to do is bug you right here, every day. :D (GO ROCKIES!)

ORION said...

oh no...
Now I feel bad for emailing you.
My bad.

Josephine Damian said...

I think the message is, if you're a personal buddy or client of Nathan's, any placement anywhere is worthy of a quick email announcement.

Other, less kindly agents? If it's your agent, I think they only want hear about your piece getting into the New Yorker. Otherwise, spare them the minutiae.

Anonymous said...

Related question:

If you have sent out a query for a nonfiction book which is currently under consideration and something happens that boosts the impressiveness of your platform, would a brief note pointing out the link to the NYTimes or Wall Street Journal that mentions you by name or something like that be acceptable?

Nathan Bransford said...

Anon-

I would really hesitate to send an update unless it is a major, make-or-break development on the order of the NY Times or WSJ. Something truly significant. Otherwise, I think you risk annoying the agent with updates -- ultimately it's all about the project, any outside developments that could possibly occur very rarely have a bearing on whether or not the agent is going to take on a project. So unless it's one of those rare occurences, I'd sit tight.

Linnea said...

I hate receiving the stuff so I never send it. I think anyone who has a business email address understands the frustration of having to weed through all the unwanted mail just in case there's something in that long list you actually need to read before you can get down to business. A good spam filter works wonders.

getitwritten_guy said...

I was thinking about emailing you on something that might make a good topic for the blog.

I've reconsidered.

Nathan Bransford said...

getitwrittenguy-

Personal communication is fine!! Guys, I'm not trying to suggest no one should e-mail me. Just don't Spam me.

Redzilla said...

Well, too bad for you--you're not going to the Special Blessing of Angel Luck by forwarding my e-mail to ten people. ;oP

We had to learn table manners in high school home ec. Please, someone, tell me that high school computer classes are trying to teach kids e-mail etiquette. Please?

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