Lo Mein and Second Acts

Occasionally on this blog I interview someone who has embarked on a second act — which I define as making a complete change in some area of your life at a time when you think you’re pretty much going to keep on doing what you’ve been doing for as long as you’re able. 

Today the person beginning her second act happens to be me.

I was talking to my delightful non-fiction agent a few weeks ago over plates of lo mein (although almost everything important in my writing career happens at the local coffeehouse, this was an exception).   I’d been looking for my “next thing” for a while.   I enjoy my work, but I’ve been doing it for a long time and wanted to shake things up.  Though I didn’t know exactly what my “next thing” was going to be, I knew I wanted to work with smart writers with great ideas.   I happened to mention this to Neil.

He got a glint in his eye — I now realize that when Neil gets that glint, it means your life is about to get turned over and shaken up, but I was more innocent then — and he said, “You should be a literary agent.  You’d make a great agent.”

“Yeah,” I said.  “I know.”  (A becoming sense of modesty is not one of my strong suits.)  “But I’m a writer,” I pointed out.  I didn’t have to add, “in Kansas,” because he was sitting right there. 

The thing about Neil is that he can’t hear the construction “Yes, but.”  All he hears is “Yes.”

“Great,” he said.  “Let me talk to a few people.”

Which is how, a few weeks later, I found myself signing a contract with The Salkind Agency (part of Studio B Productions) as a literary agent. 

Yes, I’m leaving out the parts where a bunch of people do a lot of hard work to make sure this is the right step for everyone involved, but in retrospect, it seems like it was almost that easy.  You know how sometimes you just know when you’ve found the right thing to do and the right people to do it with, and they feel the same way?  That’s how this was.

In the coming weeks, I’ll be posting more about how things work at The Salkind Agency and the kinds of authors I’ll be representing (under the guidance of the amazing Neil Salkind), but for right now I’m looking at pretty much anything that could be classified as “smart writer, great idea.”  My agency email is jennifer at studiob dot com and more about The Salkind Agency can be found at www.salkindagency.com

So that’s my Monday.   More as we go along.

A few of my favorite things

LESSONS IN MAGIC
A CERTAIN KIND OF MAGIC
THE IMPROBABLE ADVENTURES OF A MIDDLE-AGED WOMAN
DOJO WISDOM FOR WRITERS

5 Comments

  1. I'm thrilled Jennifer. As a writer who's collaborated with you in the past I can atest you are wonderful to work with. All best wishes for this new venture!

  2. Hey, you GO, girl! Here's to breaking the next bestseller! Happy for you, and proud you've got the guts. Rock on!

  3. Congrats, Jennifer! I already know first-hand what a great teacher you are; the writers you work with are going to be lucky indeed!

    Kate

  4. Pretty cool post. I just came by your site and wanted to say
    that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way
    I'll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon!

  5. Congratulations! It sounds absolutely wonderful.

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