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How to Get A Literary Agent

October 20, 2020

Getting a literary agent is all about making sure you find the right one, in your niche, also known as genre.  Books have to be obvious about which genre they come from but there is also such thing as mixed genre efforts, such as a science fiction mystery.  I’m reading H.P. Lovecraft right now.  It seems to be mixed genre with the science fiction or fantasy thrown into it. An agent is your guide to the literary world, as you seek to publish your book like it is a quest.  It really does feel like a quest at times.  Selecting a good literary agent means that you find one endorsed, not someone who charges a reading fee. Literary agents help one get their foot in the door, since literary agents refine a manuscript for you with their own grammar knowledge.

It is hard to publish stuff without an agent these days.  I need to find one, and soon, I’m working on my fiction now.  I mean my block is lifted, as I feel I can work on it.  Genres who do not need a literary agent are: poetry, academic/educational, cookbooks, non-fiction, while those who do need an agent are in fiction, children’s picture books, and memoir. Your proposal must have a good argument as to why the agent should bother with your book.  To start the process of looking for a literary agent, one must make a list from databases like Reeedsy, Agent Query or Query Tracker, while searching who represents your favorite authors. The acknowledgements pages thank the literary agent often enough.  The Reedsy blog I’m citing has helped me figure out some of what lies behind the mystery of finding a literary agent.

Evaluating each agent is something that should be done.  I found that McBride Literary agency might work for my book on bullies.  Other big name publishers I have pitched to will work on my book about psychic attack.  I have a science fiction book I finished, that is out, as a rough draft of sorts.  I should look into submitting that.  I appreciate the fact that these days, we can submit through the Internet not using paper at all. You have to work with a company who is looking for queries, not asking for a reading fee/upfront fee at all.  A personalized query letter starts with a hook, since your query letter needs to be reviewed by a professional.  Agents have submission guidelines that authors should put their work together while having them in mind. Each query letter has to be personalized, and I can do this if I get enough postage to send it out with.

This is why I need to fix the printer.  I can get paper to print snail mail letters.  You have to make sure you are with the right agent for you, and I know how to put this advice to good use, since you can query multiple agents.  You do not want or need to switch agents for every book. I’m trying to get my bullies book professionally edited, and cleaned up since the track changes feature is on.  Literary agents work on commission, in particular if your publisher wants to pay out a $20,000 advance for your work.  The agent then gets a commission of $3,000.  Even if I self-published Opening New Dimensions, I have just read that I can get a decent agent who can get me translation, film and TV rights.  My book sits on Amazon, a lump on a log, not being read by many.

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