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Monthly Archives - September 2014

Literary agents and the slushpile: slaying the myths

Don’t get stuck here!

There’s a stupid amount of mystique around the slushpile and really there’s no need. This post slays some myths and explains how the slushpile process really works.

Myth #1: Agents don’t want slushpile submissions

OK, it’s true that there are some agents who really don’t. Those would include (a) agents winding their business down prior to retirement, (b) those agents who are senior enough that they can find good new authors via private recommendations, etc, (c) those who source a majority of their new clients from the media and other ‘celebrity’ type sources. (more…)

The Ultimate Juliet Mushens Novel

Ask some agents what kind of books they want, and they’ll say, “Oh, you know, books that are well-written with a strong story and an interesting and original voice.” That is: they want good books.

Juliet Mushens of course wants the exact same thing, but she can also be amazingly specific in her loves. (Her AH page is here, her website here.) So specific, indeed, that I think it must be possible to create the Ultimate Juliet Mushens Novel – and we’d love to challenge you to come up with it. (more…)

Agent Transparency: a manifesto for change

Agent Hunter is, by far, the UK’s most complete database on literary agents and agencies: a database that extends far beyond mere contact info, to deliver such things as photos, biographies, genre preferences and much more. We’ve crunched our mass of data to produce the first full demography of Planet Agent and, if you want to skip straight through to the results, you can view them in full on our infographic here. (more…)

How to get a literary agent

Need an agent? Of course you do. But finding a literary agent is seldom as simple as writing a book, sending it out, getting accepted and getting a book deal. I mean, it can happen like that (and it did to me), but the usual path is much more tangled and requires some serious decision-making en route.

So – we’ve put together a somewhat tongue-in-cheek flowchart which takes you through the most common outcomes (frustration, rewrites, success, axe-murdering …) and some suggestions of how to navigate your way. The image is large, so you’ll need to click the image to bring it up at full scale. (more…)