“Go big or go home.” That’s basically what I’m doing by trying to get a literary agent. If you are not familiar with the process, I will explain it here in this post. If you are a writer seeking representation, then you know what I’m talking about, but maybe something here will help you (even if it’s emotionally!). Perhaps a nugget of information that you didn’t already know.
To be published in one of the top five publishing houses––Penguin/Random House, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, Harper Collins, or the Hatchette Book Group––you must be represented by a literary agent, hence the reason I said I’m going big or going home. I’m starting at the top. Why not? Right? And each one of those publishing houses have subsidiaries, which also require an agent.
How do you find a literary agent? It’s not easy. Agents receive hundreds, if not thousands of queries (basically a letter pitching your book) a year, and the goal is for an aspiring author to make it out of the slush pile. If you’ve ever applied for a job, you know how hard it can be. You need your resume to stand out, get noticed. Querying an agent is like that. Sometimes you hear back. Sometimes you don’t. Sometimes you receive a form rejection letter. And sometimes, if you’re lucky, you move on to the next round, the interview, or in this case, an agent requesting your manuscript.
As I query my second manuscript (I’ve sent out over 65 for my first one, and six agents are currently reading it…fingers crossed!), I will keep you all posted as the answers come in. Expect lots of rejections. It’s all part of the process (of course, way easier said than done. This can be a post in and of itself). It’s truly a numbers game, and when the rate of acceptance is less than 1%, the odds are definitely not in my favor. But someone has to be the less than one percent, right? Hopefully, it’ll be me.