In order to kick-start my blog, well, back into the blog-o-sphere, I've decided to try out the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. And what is that exactly?
A challenge to all bloggers for the month of April to post a blog every day, except Sundays, during the entire month. And to up the bar, each post needs to be thematically written, from A to Z. And since I'm a writer, well, I'm hoping to blog each day on a writing-related topic, all linked to my journey towards publication and the NYT's Best Seller List.
Day one is here (the only Sunday we'll actually post) - so today's letter is A...and my topic:
Agents: Of the Literary Kind.
So what exactly is a Literary Agent?
A literary agent is the in-between buffer between you and the big house publishers. They will try to sell your manuscript to a publishing house, will handle contract negotiations and all the mind numbing legalities that come with it, and will often times also help edit your manuscript to help make it shine.
Why do you need a literary Agent?
Amongst many things, an agent will shop your manuscript around publishing houses, using their inside knowledge and connections, to place it with the right editor. And believe me, the world between agents and publishers is tight-knit - so why not leverage your agent's connections, vs. trying to tackle that yourself?
And did I mention agents also handle all the minute details of the publishing contract? Unless you have a fine understanding around contracts and negoitiations, I'd recommend leaving that up to your fabulous agent - allowing you to focus on what got you here to begin with: your writing.
Cause like you, your agent's goal is to sell your work - because they don't get paid, if your book isn't sold.
Does everyone need an Agent?
Of course the answer to that is no, not everyone does. But my dream is to get published using the old fashioned, traditional methods - and I believe having a literary agent will help me to focus on my writing, vs. all of the other stuff that comes with the publication process. Afterall, that's their job - and having someone to back you on your journey to the NYT's best-seller list? Well, I'm all about that.
Do I have an Agent?
Not "officially" yet. But I'm in the process of a massive revision on my current manuscript, THE LUCKY FEW, with an amazing agent - who I've been working with for almost a year now.
Because we haven't officially signed yet, I won't be saying who he is - but I will say, he has been one of my all-time top three agents, for the 5+ years I've been writing and querying agents. It has been a dream to work with him - afterall, how often do you get pages of editorial comments on your work, from a real-live agent? Not to mention, the numerous emails and phone calls we have traded so far = invaluable.
While the revision process has taken a little longer than I expected, it has been incredibly interesting - and I wouldn't give it up for anything. I look forward to the day I can officially post, I have an agent (fingers crossed, it's sometime this year)!
Where'd I find him?
There are many great resources out there - but here are two of my favorites: