When To Call an Agent
A lot of people wonder when it’s okay to call an agent or editor on the phone. The simple answer is: When they’re YOUR agent or editor.
If you’re my client, I love talking to you. Don’t be afraid to call. Don’t worry about “bothering” me, and don’t worry about being “high maintenance.” If you need to call, call. If I can’t answer, I won’t. Leave a message, I’ll call you back.
For anyone who’s not represented by an agent and not contracted with a publishing house, then it’s almost never okay to call an agent or editor on the phone. I say “almost” but honestly, I can’t think of an exception. This is why God created email, right? Don’t call to ask questions about submissions, definitely don’t call to follow up on a submission, don’t call to chat or pitch your project.
Most agents spend a lot of time on the phone. I’m talking with clients and editors everyday, and often these phone calls are long and they’re one right after the other. (And yes, I use a headset.) So sometimes, it helps to use email to schedule a call so you can avoid playing so much phone tag.
Lately I find myself wanting to be on the phone more, because I get so weary of the hundreds of emails in my box. It can be overwhelming! Many times it’s more effective and quicker to talk through an issue on the phone with a client or editor, rather than try to compose an email.
If you have an agent, be sure to find out their preference for how best to contact them: email, phone calls, texting, Twitter, Facebook, Google+. But if you need to call them, do it. They’re your agent—they shouldn’t have a problem with actually talking to you.
What about you? Do you find you’re using other methods of communication besides phone calls these days? How do you best communicate?