Tuesday, August 9, 2011

How to Get an Agent and Other Bits of Advice

Randy Peyser is a book coach. I listened to a very informative interview with her this past weekend through a website that is called the Author Summer School. The interview was very enlightening in terms of the process of going about getting an agent and of getting published in this day and age.

Agents Receive 15,000 Manuscripts a Month!

First off, agents are very busy people. Did you know the average agent receives anywhere from 15,000 manuscripts a month? How can your manuscript stand out amongst the rest of the mush that is headed straight for the slush pile?

Peyser says you can go to writers’ conferences, where you can pitch directly to agents. But, even there, you’re probably going to be in a line with at least 50 other eager-to-be authors in front of you.

This is why you need to demonstrate what is so compelling about your book. According to Peyser, too many aspiring authors make the mistake of thinking it’s their story that is going to sell their book. The story is important too, but what agents, and publishers for that matter, are looking for is that you already have a publicity machine in place. In the end, it's all about numbers.

Social Media Following

In other words, an agent and a publisher want to see that you have an established social media following, in the form of a blog, Facebook presence and a twitter account.

If you are trying to sell your manuscript, also expect that an agent will want a synopsis of your story. And they will want three different versions of this synopsis: a five-page version, a three-page version, and a one-pager.

Peyser left one really good piece of advice. She said to call on all of your contacts to help you once your book is out. Her advice is to email everyone you know and to ask if they would help you by sending out an email to everyone in their address book once your book is released. This way, you might find that you have even more contacts that you ever imagined.

2 comments:

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  2. 15,000 manuscripts a month this number may be so large and little more. We can have different choice and suitability friv 3

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