Agent Regina Brooks On: The Publishing Process at a Glance

Editor’s note: I am declaring November 2010 to be “Agent Guest Column Month,” and therefore, every weekday, I will be posting a guest column by a literary agent. Day 20: Today’s guest agent is Regina Brooks of the Serendipity Literary Agency.


Guest column by Regina Brooks, literary
agent at Serendipity Literary. This text
excerpted from Regina’s 2009 book,
Writing Great Books For Young Adults.


  1. Author writes the manuscript.
  2. Author revises the manuscript.
  3. Author gets critiques and implements necessary changes.
  4. Author submits queries to agents.
  5. Author secures agent.
  6. Author makes changes per agent’s feedback.
  7. Agent submits work to publishers. 
  8. Editor reads the manuscript and tells agent she is enamored and plans to share with the editorial board.
  9. Editor shares the manuscript with the editorial board.
  10. Editor prepares profit and loss (P&L) statement for the book. 
  11. Editor contacts agent and makes an offer.
  12. Agent shares offer with the author. 
  13. Agent negotiates the terms of the offer with editor. 
  14. Agent reviews actual contract, makes additions and deletions to
    the clauses in agreement in the best interest of the author, and sends
    it back to the publisher’s legal counsel. 
  15. Editor sends final contract to agent.
  16. Agent sends contract to author for signature. 
  17. Editor prepares editorial notes for author, and the author revises again. 
  18. Author submits final manuscript. 
  19. Editor reviews the manuscript and then prepares it for production.
  20. Editors in production department copyfit and proof the manuscript.
  21. Editor sends copyedits to the author for review.
  22. Author reviews last pass of manuscript after proof. 
  23. Editor prepares back cover copy, catalogue copy, and other tools to sell the book.
  24. Publicity sends out galley copies to media for review. 
  25. Book is published and starts to be sold.



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3 thoughts on “Agent Regina Brooks On: The Publishing Process at a Glance

  1. Jeroen Steenbeeke

    This is most helpful! Up until now my view of the publishing industry was something like:

    1. Write book
    2. Revise until satisfied
    3. Find agent
    4. Black box in which agent/publisher/author communicate and make further changes
    5. Publication

    Your post did a lot to clarify the part that I saw as a "black box", as well as force a reality check on the part leading up to finding an agent.

  2. Jen Zeman

    I bought Regina’s book when I started my manuscript (I had actually written a memoir and revised it to YA fiction based on suggestions received). It was a tremendous help! I highly recommend it for any writer getting started in the YA world.


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