In additon to writing these last two posts (and having Jenny Rappaport, my fellow agent, do the same over at her blog, litsoup.blogspot.com) for our new intern, I also wrote these posts as the long answer to the inevitable writer's conference question, "How can you tell if you like my book if you only read the query." I am hoping that by sharing these long personal diatribes about what goes into our decision to read something and, perhaps, take it and/or the writer on, you'll understand that most of the time it really is a case of "it's not you, it's me." The short answer to this question that I often give at writer's conferences is that I've been doing this for a long time and I really know what I like and what I do well.
Now, in the same way I told you so much about who I am and what I like, and why, I also try, over the years, to get to know my authors as well as they know me, so that when we brainstorm for book ideas, we are on the same page and I can sell their work well. I know that every agent doesn't work this way, but my representation is really a collaborative effort. I see us as partners for the long haul. I am really not interested in doing just one book, even if it will make me a lot of money.