Short Stories

New Literary Agent Alert: Michael Caligaris of Holloway Literary

Reminder: New literary agents (with this spotlight featuring Michael Caligaris of Holloway Literary) are golden opportunities for new writers because each one is a literary agent who is likely building his or her client list. About Michael: Michael Caligaris has been working in publishing since 2013. After earning an MFA in Creative Writing from St. Mary’s College, he co-founded...

Write Short Fiction

The Strategic Use of Short Fiction

The new world of self-publishing options calls to mind the golden age of the pulp magazines. During that era, roughly 1920–1950, writers could earn decent money pounding out stories and novellas for a penny a word. Later, the 1950s boom in mass-market paperbacks provided another source of lettuce for the enterprising author. Production and...

7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Ben Stroud

1. Writing Routines Are Only So Valuable. I used to be a stickler for routine. My desk needed to be just so. I needed the room (and preferably the apartment) to myself. I needed non-vocal music (classical or soundtracks). Then I moved to a one-bedroom apartment in Germany. I couldn’t get a good radio...

5 Reasons Novelists Should Write & Publish Short Stories

1. Because it’s fun. If you don’t enjoy writing short stories, then never mind: you probably shouldn’t be doing it. But if you’re avoiding writing them because you believe that you have to write a novel in order to have a career as a writer, I beg you to reconsider. GIVEAWAY: Suzanne is excited to...

New Literary Agent Alert: William Boggess of Barer Literary

William is seeking: "In fiction, I’m looking for strong voices that have the authority to draw me into a different world—even if that just means a fresh perspective on the world we live in day to day. I like novels of many different styles—Larry McMurtry, Ann Patchett, Walker Percy, Evelyn Waugh, and Daniel Woodrell...

Originality Isn’t Everything: Write What You Know

My Tips: 1. Don’t let anyone make you feel bad about what you enjoy writing. 2. If what you love is genre, learn more. Study the origins, read criticism, read books about it. 3. Take the pressure off, and just practice. You don’t always have to be original. I don’t say that I write what...

How I Got My Agent: Scott Dominic Carpenter

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, with this installment featuring Scott Dominic Carpenter, author of the short story collection, THIS JEALOUS EARTH. These columns are great ways for you to learn how to find a literary agent. Some tales are of long roads and...

Agent Advice: Kate Garrick of DeFiore and Company

“Agent Advice” (more than 170 interviews so far!) is a series of quick interviews with literary and script agents who talk with Guide to Literary Agents about their thoughts on writing, publishing, and just about anything else. This installment features Kate Garrick of DeFiore and Company Author Services, LLC. She joined the publishing world in...

The Short Happy Lives of Short Story Collections

Short story collections are the weird sister of the publishing world. Though you can see anthologies of shorts in bookstores (i.e., 2012's Greatest Stories About the Kardashian Sisters), you rarely see collections by individual authors. Sometimes the poor things are teetering on the tippy-top shelf of a general fiction section, because it's a rare...

7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Stephen Graham Jones

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 Stephen Graham Jones. Stephen Graham Jones is the author of...

7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Erika Dreifus

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 Erika Dreifus. Erika Dreifus is the author of Quiet Americans:...

How I Got My Agent: David Vann

"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...

7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Paula Bomer

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 Paula Bomer. Paula Bomer grew up in South Bend, IN,...

Agent Advice: Claire Gerus of Claire Gerus Literary Agency

This installment features Claire Gerus of Claire Gerus Literary Agency. She is seeking: Contemporary fiction, including mysteries and short story collections. Her nonfiction interests include biographies, memoirs, finance, current affairs, politics, history, military, health & fitness, psychology, religion, technology, and true crime.

New Agent Alert: Justine Wenger of Emma Sweeney Agency, LLC

Editor's note: Justine is no longer listed on the agency website. Do not query her unless her name reappears. 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...

How I Got My Agent: Greg Gutierrez

"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...

How Long is a Novella? And How Do You Query Agents For Them?

Q. What is the average length of a novella?  And is it’pitched’ to literary agents the same way novels are ‘pitched’?         – Gene A. Novellas generally run 20,000-50,000 words.  About 30,000 words is average.  While this number of words would be very common when pitching a nonfiction text, such a length reminds...

Agent Advice: Debbie Carter of Muse Literary Management

This installment features literary agent Debbie Carter of Muse Literary Management. Prior to starting her own agency in 1998, she worked for a literary agent, a talent manager, and in the record business as a talent scout. She has a BA in English and music from Washington Square University College at NYU. She is...