ARE YOU MY SECRET AGENT?
Posted by newromantics4
Fantasising about my heart’s desire, you know gazing doe-eyed at people on trains, in restaurants, in fact everywhere, was becoming a habit. No, not searching for the love of my life you understand but for the other thing I so desperately needed…a literary agent!
It manifested itself in earnest at the airport. I was idly scanning rows of world-weary passengers, fiddling with clear plastic bags, when I noticed an attractive woman and found myself staring at her, and doing it again, wondering, just wondering.
She was petite, with chopped unruly hair and tangerine lipstick. She wore Capri pants, a white vest, with a pearl grey – undeniably cashmere –cardigan, flung over tanned shoulders. She looked just like a literary agent I had seen, somewhere, sometime, I was sure of it.
Further proof – if proof were needed – her left arm rattled with ivory bangles and under her right, a bronze leather briefcase revealed one of those new reading gismos – see, told you I was right!
She reapplied lipstick, whilst reading the tablet-thingie avidly without glasses, and was almost certainly checking the Booker long list or something equally writerly and literary-like. I willed her to look up, so I could smile and engage her in conversation.
“You’re a literary agent, how fascinating,” I’d say, “You won’t believe this but I’ve just finished my first novel, of course I’ll send it to you. Shall we sit next to each other on the plane, I could give you an outline of the story…oh really, you’ve decided you’re not going to Dublin after all?”
Luckily for her, she didn’t look up.
Unsurprisingly, I did not run into one literary agent all the time I was holed up in my writer’s garret, high in the Wicklow mountains, but I did read all the current reviews and made a good start on novel #2.
Back at the airport, I was a few pages into my newly purchased Sue Townsend, when she sat down beside me. No, not the one I’d scared off earlier, who with hindsight was probably only an Oscar-winning actress, but the real thing. Late fifties, soft, streaky hair, navy linen trousers, flowing jacket, dangly earrings. She whipped a notebook out of her bag and started making copious notes, never once looking up to see when we were to board – lost in another world, the world of the best-seller, translation rights and author signings.
As she headed towards the gate, I noticed she had forgotten her Brown Thomas carrier bag, I caught up with her, she thanked me.
I stammered. “Sorry but are you…?”
“Yes dear, I am.” She said in crystal-clear, accent-less English and turning away, was gone. I knew it, I’d seen her at the London Book Fair; she was not only a literary agent but a highly successful one at that!
Drat, drat, drat – I’d missed my chance, my one and only chance to become a published author. I was bereft, crestfallen, crushed…and then a thought, I’ll send her my novel anyway, it’s worth a shot, I’ll give it a go – as Churchill said, never, never, never, give up!