I had one of the best experiences in my life as an author this past week. Truth-be-told, I was curious how well my first book – Leviticus’s Purr’ – was doing with the local readers. Imagine my surprise to learn that my small-town Public Library had ordered a paperback copy to go along with the hardcover I donated because of the high interest my book generated. They now have a donated hardcover copy of my second book – Robert’s Roar. I’m confident that it’ll be just as well received.
In this Bi-monthly copy of ‘Writer’s Digest’ magazine, their annual agent feature was back. Featuring 35-reps each seeking new clients in a variety of genres, and sub-genres. I was pleasantly surprised to find that there were THREE very strong contenders interested in my standard paranormal romance, and as many as 7 that I’ll do more in-depth delving into to see if they’d want to consider my work as well. Although not all the agents were interested in my particular genre – everyone of them left ‘Tips For Writers’ that I very much appreciated. See if you don’t agree – here are just a few examples:
* Find a critique partner who can be objective and can tell you what is and isn’t working at a craft level. What is well-established in your own head doesn’t always come across on paper. – Whitley Abell @whitleyabell
* Don’t be discourage by rejection. This being a subjective business, that is bound to happen many times over. Learn from constructive criticism and grow. – Mark Gottlieb @mark_gottlieb
* A thoughtful, tailored query always gets further than something that feels it’s been spammed to me and all my colleagues. It’s not a race: do your work justice by being just as thoughtful about its submission process. – Erik Hane @erikhane
* Being a published author is a business and you would never go into business without knowing your competition. Read other successful authors in your genre; know what books have been busy. – Abigail Koons – @abbykoons
* When you’re putting together a list of agents to query, remember to look in the Acknowledgements sections of books that are close in subject matter or tone to yours, or books you generally admire [to find mention of agents]. – Emma Patterson @empat222
* Remember that your goal isn’t just to sell a book, but to build a career. Make sure when you’re talking to an agent that you want to work with that agent for years, possibly decades to come. – Dongwon Song @dongwon
Now, as I mentioned – these are but a few … but every single agent in the article left tips along with what they were interested in, and perhaps more importantly – what they don’t want. The best advise I’ve been given, and by numerous authors I might add: Always know all there is to know about the agent your trying to ‘hook’. Although I haven’t heard back from the agent I submitted my Tri-natured Warriors first book – Savor the Bond, to after RWA18, yet … no news could be good news – right?!?
“Write-on, my friends.”