Literary Agents: Look Before You Leap!

Get-The-Inside-Scoop-On-A-Literary-Agent-FEATUREDI’ve spent the last few days finalizing the list of agents I have chosen to submit my work to. If you are looking for an agent, I would recommend checking out the Association of Author’s Representatives(AAR). It’s a free database on line that provides a list of literary agents, the genres they represent, and if they are open for submission.

Once you’ve identified agents you would like to pursue, the work begins. I had a list of 12 agents that met my criteria. Well I didn’t want to send my work out to all 12 at one time, so I began the process of elimination.

Remember you are interviewing the agents and determining if they are a fit for your work, just as they are reviewing you work to determine if you are a fit for them. Don’t waste your time, or the agents, by sending them work in a genre they don’t represent.

I pulled up the literary agencies for the agents I selected and read their biographies. I wanted to know how long they had been in the business, who their clients were, and the books they had recently sold to publishers.

I was able to eliminate a few following the aforementioned reviews and continued to the blogs or web pages of the remaining.

This not only allowed me to get a feel for the agent as a person, but it provided valuable information. One of the agents I decided to  submit to, talked about what she liked to see in a query letter.

Well I had just reviewed query letters to refresh my memory, and noted that what she liked in her queries and what the official query letter format recommends, don’t match up.

As a matter of fact, she said when she opened a query that used her preferred format, she knew the person submitting the proposal had done their homework.

Do your homework!

-Jan R

 

Literary Agents: Look Before You Leap!

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