The Call: It Doesn’t Always Go Like You’d Think

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

  When I was an aspiring author, I read every query letter success story I could get my hands on. There was a common theme to these essays, which tended to go something like this: the writer, having long since given up hope that she’d ever become published, is strolling through Target one day when her phone rings. She glances at it, realizes the phone is displaying the 212 area…


Sorcery and Serendipity: The Quirks of Querying

Monday, January 29, 2018

If you’ve reached the querying stage of the publication process: Congratulations! You wrote and edited a book. (You did edit it, didn’t you? A lot? Good.) You’re ready to send your baby out into the world, and that can be thrilling and exciting. This stage can also be totally overwhelming. I dealt with some of the chaos by keeping a running spreadsheet of who I queried and when I queried…


Kimmery’s Timeline to Publication

Kimmery Martin
Wednesday, December 6, 2017

  Back when I was engaged in the humbling process of querying, I held a keen interest in other people’s publication stories, especially if they were full of initial angst and failure. I wanted to know this: how long did it take, and how hard was it? Because for me, it took forever, and it was hard as hell. I can state with confidence that all debut writers are intensely…


My Long and Winding Path to Representation

Thursday, September 28, 2017

In 2013 I wrote a book called A SMALL LIFE. I revised it and by the fall, began querying it (much too soon). I scoured Janet Reid’s archives on Query Shark, I read through Query Tracker, researched who represented my favorite books, and assembled a list of agents to query. On that initial list was Mollie Glick, who was then at Foundry. She wasn’t a new agent, but as I…


Dear Agent: XOXO from Kimmery

Jane Dystel, Mariam Goderich, Kimmery Martin
Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Note: this week, we are discussing the process of landing a literary agent. For anyone unfamiliar with this torturous process, it involves writing a one-page letter, describing your book and yourself, in which you are supposed to entice, or at least not frighten, the agent. You wanna talk about the sting of rejection? Settle in, child. I am the patron saint of awful query letters. In the beginning, I tried…


Right This Way, Lady Luck

Thursday, March 16, 2017

This week, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, we’re chatting about luck and how it’s had an impact on our success as authors. When writing this blog, I actually typed “what is luck?” into Google. You guys know how I love Google. Here’s what came back: Success or failure brought by chance rather than through one’s own actions. Let’s remove the failure part, because… positivity. So, I’ll revise this to…


A Few Tips from Literary Agent Leigh Feldman

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

This week we’re passing along advice from the publishing industry, and my agent, Leigh Feldman, was nice enough to outline her top pointers for querying writers. I’ve had the honor of working with Leigh for the past two years, and one of the things I love about her is that she tells it like it is! **Make sure the agent you query represents books in the genre you have written. When…


When Not to Query

Monday, 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…


She Says Tomahto, That Guy Over There Says Tomato: My Experience On Submission

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

This week we’re talking about our submission process, and what’s been interesting to me is how different each of those processes were. Louise’s path was deceptively easy — she was fortunate enough to impress a great editor with her first forty pages, but then she had to fulfill the promise of those pages and nurture that editor’s interest for three full years. Jennifer’s first novel died in submission, and she…


They read the slush pile!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

It was 2007 when I first set out to understand the query process with a manuscript much lighter than what I write now. I looked online for advice, and found mostly angry blogs and chat groups convinced no one read the slush pile. It was all very what’s the point in trying if your mom isn’t Judy Blume? Then I discovered a blog called Miss Snark. Miss Snark was a respected agent blogging…