Chuck Sambuchino’s Guide to Literary Agents Blog

Chuck Sambuchino is an editor and published author who runs the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, one of the biggest blogs in publishing. His site has instruction and information on literary agents, literary agencies, query letters, submissions, publishing, author platform, book marketing, and more.


Sebastian Literary Agency to Close

I recently got a note from the Sebastian Literary Agency (based in Minnesota) saying that, after 28 years of agenting, they are soon to be closed. Needless to say, they are not taking on new clients. The agency is run by Laurie Harper. Laurie represented many nonfiction titles, including this one.

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Successful Queries: Agent Ayesha Pande and “Finny”

This new series is called "Successful Queries" and I'm posting actual query letters that succeeded in getting writers signed with agents. In addition to posting the actual query letter, we will also get to hear thoughts from the agent as to why the letter worked. The 32nd installment in this series is with agent...

Footnotes: 5 Articles About Creating Characters

“First, find out what your hero wants. Then just follow him.” ~ Ray Bradbury Footnotes is a recurring series on the GLA blog where I pick a subject and provide several interesting articles on said topic. This week I’ve included five articles on writing characters. 1. Keeping it real. Author Lauren Oliver discusses how to...

Cover Band Soap Opera: How Alcohol Affects Playing

I had a few beers1 at this weekend’s show with my cover band. As the night went on, three things you started to see from me were more smiles, more stage presence2 and more mistakes. It’s all part of the way alcohol affects one’s musicianship when consumed in not-tiny quantities.   You ever read one...

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SCBWI Live-Blogged Conferences = Tons of Info

I don't highlight things like this as much as I should, but know that some conferences nowadays are live-blogged, allowing those who can't attend the event a glimpse at the informational sessions and presentations that go on. Of course, nothing takes the place of personally attending a conference (you get to pitch and network),...

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Agent Advice: Elana Roth Parker of Laura Dail Literary

This installment features Elana Roth of Caren Johnson Literary Agency. Elana began her career at Nickelodeon Magazine, which made her fall in love with children’s publishing. Afterward, she spent nearly 5 years as an editor at Parachute Publishing, a packager specializing in children’s book series. She’s spent the last two years as an agent,...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Tom Bentley

This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers at any stage of their career can talk about seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning. This installment is from writer Tom Bentley. Tom Bentley has run a writing and editing...

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Tips on Writing Middle Grade: What Kids Love

Use a familiar setting with a fantastic twist. The new student turns out to be a ghost, a rainstorm sucks the class into the bottom of the sea, or Santa Claus gets stranded outside their class portable. Introduce a mystery. How did a dead lizard get out of its aquarium? Who threw an eraser at...

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How I Got My Agent: Vicky Dreiling

"How I Got My Agent" is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at...

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How to Write a Book Series

It was a strange thing. There I was writing books about teens struggling with alcoholic parents and depression, when an idea for ninja cheerleaders popped into my head. See—strange? Turns out that idea became The Naughty List, my first young adult novel (released in February 2010). But then things got even weirder… it became...

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Agent Advice: Cameron McClure of Donald Maass Literary Agency

This installment features Cameron McClure of the Donald Maass Literary Agency. She joined the Maass Agency in 2004 and, in addition to her own growing client list, Cameron handles the agency's foreign and film rights. She is seeking: Cameron represents mostly fiction and is especially interested in seeing literary fiction, mystery and suspense, urban fantasy...

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How to Target Your Submissions to Agents

So you feel it in your bones that there’s a perfect individual out there ready to fall all over the slush pile to publish your manuscript. Maybe you’re scouring the planet for an agent to stand behind you when the winds of rejection threaten to blow the knuckle hairs off your writing hand. What’s...

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New Agent Alert: Ali McDonald of The Rights Factory

Reminder: Newer agents are golden opportunities for new writers because they’re likely building their client list; however, always make sure your work is as perfect as it can be before submitting, and only query agencies that are a great fit for your work. Otherwise, you’re just wasting time and postage. She is seeking: Young adult...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by David Blockley

This is a recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers at any stage of their career can talk about seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning. This installment is from writer David Blockley. David Blockley is a professor at the University...

A Thank You to My Wonderful Blog Readers!

I just got the numbers stuff for March 2010 and it was the blog’s biggest month ever. Right now, the site gets more than 100,000 page views each month and continues to grow. I just wanted to stop for a minute and say thank you for following the site. Thank you if you’ve added...

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How I Got My Agent: Richard L. Mabry

"How I Got My Agent" is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at...

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Agent Advice: Marlene Stringer of The Stringer Literary Agency

This installment features Marlene Stringer of The Stringer Literary Agency. She is seeking: Fiction interests include mystery, thrillers, contemporary and urban fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, women’s fiction, romance, and YA/teen. Nonfiction interests include history, military history, parenting, music, sports, and science.

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Patricia Stoltey

This is a new recurring column I’m calling “7 Things I’ve Learned So Far,” where writers at any stage of their career can talk about seven things they’ve learned along their writing journey that they wish they knew at the beginning. This installment is from writer Patricia Stoltey. Patricia Stoltey is the author of two...

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How I Got My Agent: Marianne Elliott

"How I Got My Agent" is a recurring feature on the GLA blog. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of good luck and quick signings. If you have a literary agent and would be interested in writing a short guest column for this GLA blog, e-mail me at...