Searching for an Agent

After two and a half years I’ve finally done it. Completed my novel, the endless edits and revisions are over.

Last week I sent off my MS to five carefully selected agents. I spent nights trawling through the Writers & Artists year book, and hours researching each firm to find the perfect match for my novel. Then, more days following them on social media or checking out their blogs. To find out about them and how I could connect. It’s tricky business. Agents hate it when authors approach them on a broad range biases, it proves they have not done their homework. I can not be accused of that.

I followed their guideline: submit first 3 chapters, double spaced and in font size 12, making sure to use an appropriate script. Each agent specifies slightly different terms, some want PDF or word document attachments other only want them in the email body.

That was fine, but what what about the ones that don’t specify?

When in doubt, make a fool of yourself. There is a microscopically thin line between being brilliantly creative and acting like the most gigantic idiot on earth. So what the hell, leap.
– Cynthia Heimel
I guessed and made that leap!
Agents and publishers want to know:
  • who you are,
  • what your novel is about,
  • what experience you have,
  • who its targeted at, and so on and so forth.
I polished individual cover letters for each agent. All specially chosen from specific companies, and then rounded down, like a bizarre version of the Hunger Games. Where only one agent with in the agency can be victorious.
Inevitably I forgot something! I didn’t include the word count. I can’t go back. I can’t add it in another email or resend the whole lot again. They class that as harassment, perhaps I’m over exaggerating. The amount of conflicting information, surrounding this process is mind boggling.
I panicked! Why did I tell them my novels a crossover between genres? What was I thinking when I claimed my story is a romance fantasy, interlaced as a psychological thriller. I don’t even know what that genre is…
That was when I mentally slapped myself! I know these thing are true. I know my own story. I might fumble and go bright red when someone asks me what its about, but I still know it inside out.
The whole process is confusing, scary and shadowed in the artist Achilles heel – DOUBT.
Now I wait and refresh my emails daily. Now I plan book 2. Now I keep going.

Thank you for reading my post. Are you almost at the finish line? Or perhaps your starting out on a new adventure, Let me know about it. I love reading your comments and discovering I’m not alone in this process. πŸ™‚

Author lorraine ambers logoΒ© Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com, 2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Author Lorraine Ambers and http://www.lorraineambers.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

18 thoughts on “Searching for an Agent

  1. I’m just writing the synopsis and starting research for an agent.
    I am dreading the whole process.
    But… I know I have to do it, so with the pragmatism born of writing, I’m getting on with it.
    Still dreading it though.
    Thanks for your piece, writers need to know that we’re not alone in our struggles πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I think the world of publishing is purely designed to destroy the spirit of otherwise talented, hardworking and intelligent people! I have one self-published and one traditionally published book under my belt and and just finishing off the second to be traditionally published. But guess what? I just recently decided that I want an agent. So I am about to hurl myself headlong into this particular joyous episode. All the best with your!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Wishing you the best of luck! As you already know mine’s en route to publication. I tried submitting to agents but that didn’t get anywhere. I submitted directly to a small independent press; the marketing will be on me. Hopefully it will be a success. I also hope to make headway on some other writing this summer.

    Liked by 1 person

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