Membership? Feh!

Some might have noticed that the whole ‘membership’ aspect of this site is gone. It was really hard to set up correctly and no one was joining anyway. Membership was free to begin with, but now it’s even free of membership requirements. Enjoy!

The Hunt for an Agent, Part 2

OK, so you’ve written and rewritten and rewritten your query letter, and you’ve done your research into other query letters, especially ones that have resulted in request for the entire book (at this stage, that’s gold).

Now it’s time to send out that gem-like prose, your query letter. But to whom? No publisher will read queries, manuscripts or even Post-It notes that come in “over the transom,” as the saying goes. To get your book directly to a publisher, you will have to have a friend or client at the publishing house.

That’s why you need an agent. They are the middle-men and (mostly)-women who have relationships with publishers, and who can get your book in front of an editor, with luck, an editor the agent knows is right for your book.

Now it’s time to find that agent.

You want to find an agent who represent your kind of book. If (like me) you’ve written a YA, or Young Adult, novel, you’ll want an agent familiar with that market. Likewise for thriller, romance, picture books or self-help. Google something like “the top [your category] agents.” Google will oblige you with any number of lists. Here are a few sites I’ve found useful:
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Join the club – get a gift

As you might have noticed, I’m changing my blog to a subscriber version. This means (as you might also have noticed), that anyone can read a teaser of my blog posts, but only subscribers get the whole post.

To sweeten the deal, in exchange for your email address I’m offering a FREE downloadable copy of the first Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles script I ever wrote, “The Fifth Turtle,” which was voted the number one best of all 193 TMNT episodes in a poll taken by the IGN.COM fan site. Here’s the link to the poll: Top Turtle.

To get your free script, click on the ‘Join Us’ link below.
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The Hunt for an Agent, Part 1

The Story Store is done. As I used to tell my writing students, That’s the easy part: now comes the hard part, selling it. And, unless you want to self-publish via Amazon, XLibris, or any one of the hundreds of vanity presses out there, you have to get an agent.

Publishers will not look at an unsolicited manuscript because there are liability issues involved, and because (I suspect) most submissions that come in “over the transom,” in the lingo, aren’t worth reading. If you know an author who’s actually sold a book or two, you might request a look-see from his/her publisher, but if the publisher doesn’t like it, you’re back to square one.

So: how to get an agent? Here’s my approach. Your mileage may vary.

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Author 101 – Meet & Greet

The best part of yesterday was the chance to meet with the agents, publishers, coaches and packagers one-on-one. It was a kind of speed-dating setup, with the presenters at tables and us attendees in line to talk with them.

My current aim (besides finishing my 3rd draft of The Story Store), is to get an agent, so I just met with them. Turns out, one agent also represents a writer friend. Always a good sign.
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Author101 update

imageThis is the agent & publisher panel. Later, we get to schmooze with them. As I thought, the presenters had good & useful tips, but wanted big bucks ($400 – $2400) to give you the whole package.

I am not going to cough up my hard-earned cash until I get The Story Store sold.

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Author 101 University

imageI’m at a 3 day event, Author 101 University in LA at the Westin. I will post whatever might be of interest.

I admit to being cynical about these things. People usually just want to sell you stuff. Walking to the meeting room, I passed a dozen booths with people wanting to sell me stuff. But hope springs eternal (see Cubs fans).


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