Blog Nineteen

Writing Tips – Finding a Literary Agent

How do you know when you need a literary agent and how do you find one if you do?

In Blog Eighteen, I gave you suggestions on how to find editors. These suggestions also work for finding a literary agent. They are worth repeating.

If you have friends, family members or acquaintances who have recently published a book, ask them for the name of a good literary agent. If you are in a writers’ group, ask the other members.

Also a good place to find names of suitable literary agents is on the acknowledgements page in books similar to yours.

Look on line. There are many excellent articles on how to find a literary agent. I suggest you read a few to get a clear idea of how to begin your search.

Beware, not all people who claim to be a literary agent are. How will you know who is and who is not? Here are a few tips. A real one does not advertise or ask you for a fee, no, no no, and will not keep requesting you buy additional services. Also, a real one will not offer to publish your book.

Your literary agent will, however, expect and deserve a percentage of the money from your book sales, but you will not be charged directly. The percentage is usually fifteen percent for domestic sales and twenty percent for foreign sales. Your literary agent’s job is to sell your book to an editor and negotiate for a lucrative deal.

A literary agent is not necessary for poetry, short stories, articles or essays. If you think a magazine might be interested in something you have written, summit it directly.

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