What Makes a Literary Agent Tick?

March 6, 2017

This week the Debs are sharing stories about their agents, editors and or publishers. Note, this is a repost of a blog post I wrote on Sep. 26, but fit perfectly for this week’s Deb topic. A few months ago, I wrote a big long article on the Grub Street blog on how long it took me to find an agent and how I eventually connected with the amazing Amaryah Orenstein at…

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Let’s Pretend I Was Calm and Sane as I Queried Agents

September 28, 2016

I’d love to write a post for today about how easy it was to find an agent. It’d go like this: I whipped up a few query letters, shipped them off, continued to write another book without any angst at all, and then magically one day a phone call and offer of representation changed my life. Simple! No big deal! Alas, that’s not how life unfolded. In reality, it took 61…

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Taking the Long View: From a Book without an Agent … to an Agent without a Book

September 27, 2016

I started the process of seeking an agent the way many of us do: a combination of earnest mailings to total strangers, desperate mailings to friends of friends, and offering my first born to the gods of literary representation. But strangers ignored me, friends of friends rejected me, and eventually my first born turned eighteen, making him a less appealing sacrifice. I had no takers. I had written a novel called…

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Agent Interview with Michelle Brower: On Pitch Sessions, Her Dream Project, & Industry Gossip

January 20, 2016

This week we are presenting the insights of our agents on querying and the publishing business in general. I am fortunate to be working with Michelle Brower, formerly of Folio Literary Management but now at Zachary Shuster Harmsworth. Michelle picked my novel out of the slush pile one snowy afternoon, and changed the course of my life. Working with her has been a joy. She has the instincts of an editor,…

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When Not to Query

January 18, 2016

A funny thing happens when you finish your manuscript and you are ready to begin your search for representation. Suddenly you are required to make the giant leap from artist to businessperson–someone who can write a sharp query letter and pitch their work with ease. When I entered this phase of my writing career, I did what I always do when I’m faced with a new writing task, and spent…

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My Agent Story: Strength in Numbers

October 2, 2015

My fellow Debs have done an amazing job this week of demystifying the agent querying process. All have given stellar advice and/or shared their experience. I hope those new to the process are learning that there’s no typical success story, and every “yes” “no” or “maybe” from an agent is the result of a million different factors. That said, there are some particulars about my book that led me to…

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The Query: Preparation is Ninety Percent, Perspiration is…Also Ninety Percent

September 30, 2015

Ah, the query.  The most important 500 words you’ll ever write. Oh, man, I wish that were an overstatement.  Here you are, a newly minted novelist, having finally finished your book with all its delicately chosen words and its delicious plotting that unfolds languorously over 350 pages like an origami butterfly, and now you have to turn into a brazen huckster who crams a hard sell into one single-spaced page….

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Finding an Agent the Old-Fashioned Way: Querying

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September 29, 2015

Yesterday, Louise gave some of the best advice I’ve read on how to research agents. She suggested going to conferences and events, reading blogs and subscribing to Publishers Marketplace, attending webinars and consulting Twitter. It’s kind of hard to blog about getting an agent after the wealth of spot-on information she gave. Except I didn’t do a single thing she mentioned. Call me a slacker, call me uninformed, but my…

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Curating Your Query List

September 28, 2015

There is a ton of excellent information online and in books about how to write the perfect query letter, the one that will wow your dream literary agent and set you on the path to publication. But in between giving your manuscript that final polish and digging into the finer mechanics of the elevator pitch there’s a step people do not write as much about: creating a thoughtful agent list….

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Agent VICTORIA MARINI on TPT, Professionalism + Her Manuscript Wish List!

April 23, 2015

Editor’s Note: The winner of last week’s giveaway with author Allison Winn Scotch is Michelle Westenbroek — Congrats, Michelle! Also, this week on The Ball is Agent Week, where each Deb is interviewing her own agent. Check back each day for insider publishing tips from some of the best agents in the business! Today on the Deb Ball, I’m so proud to introduce you to agent extraordinaire VICTORIA MARINI, of…

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