Agents

A Feast of Days (Part 2): Agents

Today’s guest post is by emerging writer Darrelyn Saloom, who recently attended the Oxford Creative Nonfiction Writers Conference, and is offering up a 4-part narrative on the experience. Darrelyn is a regular guest here at No Rules. Follow her on Twitter or read her previous posts. Pictured above: Plaque on the...

Agents & Editors: Take This Quick Survey

Cartoon from Toothpaste for Dinner I’m conducting a bit of formal research for a future blog post. I have a question from a writer that goes something like this: I’d like to know what happened in 2009-2010 in the publishing world. I’ve heard some amazing things (30% of employees laid off,...

An Agency Offers Paid Services—With Strings Attached

I’ve written frequently on agents and innovation of their model, twice for Writer’s Digest, and twice for Digital Book World: The Evolution of the Literary Agent (Writer’s Digest, August 2010) Agents Need to Develop Alternative Models (DBW, June 2010) The Changing Agent-Author Relationship (DBW, February 2010) The Future Role of Agents...

The Ultimate Guide to Novel Queries

To give everyone an easy page to reference (or share) on writing novel queries, here are links to every installment of my series. 5 Elements of a Novel Query + Examples of Personalization The 3 Elements of a Novel Hook Examples of Revised Novel Hooks Red Flags in Novel Hooks and...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#10)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. QUERY FAQs What if the agent reading your query can tell that...

New In-Depth Interview With Me at Writer Unboxed

Last Friday, part 1 of an interview with me went live over at Writer Unboxed. Here’s a quick snippet: Overall, social media tools—and I use that term broadly, to include all types of person-to-person interaction online—have driven transparency and opportunities to communicate with and reach a very distinctive and unique audience....

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#9)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. FULL QUERIES Here is where we put it all together—so you can...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#8)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. QUERY LETTER RED FLAGSHere is an overall list of red flags to...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#7)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. CLOSE YOUR LETTER PROFESSIONALLYYou don’t read much advice about how to close...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#6)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. THE KEY ELEMENTS OF YOUR NOVEL QUERY BIOFor novelists, especially unpublished ones,...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#5)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. ONE-SENTENCE HOOKS OF BOOKS THAT SOLDThere are many reasons for writers to...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#4)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. RED FLAGS IN NOVEL HOOKS & QUERIESTo continue the previous discussion on...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#3)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back to the beginning of the series. GREAT NOVEL HOOKS MAKE IT LOOK OH-SO EASY!Whenever I teach a class...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#2)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) Go back and read Part 1. THE 3 ELEMENTS OF A NOVEL HOOKThe novel hook is where you sell your...

Ultimate Blog Series on Novel Queries (#1)

This is my definitive No Rules series on novel queries. It’s meant particularly for writers who are new to the query process. (A series on nonfiction book queries will come later.) THE 5 ELEMENTS OF A NOVEL QUERYEvery query should include these 5 elements (but not necessarily delivered in this order):...

Meet Me at the 2011 Writer's Digest Conference

Mark your calendars! In January, I’ll be speaking at the Writer’s Digest Conference, joining a stellar line-up of publishing professionals and successful authors. The conference has many different features/facets, including: The now infamous Pitch Slam, with more than 50 agents ready to meet you and hear your pitch A keynote address...

3 Critical Steps After Rejection

Just released from Writer’s Digest, Writer’s Digest University is part market guide, part boot camp, offering keys to getting your work published. I am honored to have written the introduction to this book, which you can read in full here. In the intro, I share 3 steps you should take after...

I Want to Publish My Book. Now What?

This post is for all those people out there who don’t know ANYTHING about the publishing industry. This post is for people who write me and say: I’ve been thinking of publishing a book. How do I do that? I want to publish my book, but don’t know whether to go...

Listen to Free Q&A on Getting Published

A couple weeks ago, Chuck Sambuchino & I participated on a panel at Joseph-Beth Booksellers (in Cincinnati) where we answered questions from aspiring writers on how to get published. Due to the kind efforts of Emily Schneider, I can now share with you the recording of that Q&A session. Click here...

The Power of Mentors, Community, and Relationships

Last night, Chris Guillebeau paid a visit to Cincinnati, as part of his Unconventional Book Tour. (I had the honor of helping arrange some of the logistics of his stop.) If you’re not familiar with Chris, here are 2 good places to start: His popular (free) manifesto, 279 Days to Overnight...

Back to Basics: Why Am I Getting Rejected?

Rejection is often the No. 1 area of pain, concern, and obsession for writers. More often than not, writers want to know WHY they’ve been rejected. Here’s the standard advice I most frequently offer. Why are editors rejecting my work when family and friends love it so much?Your family and friends...

The Evolution of the Literary Agent

The October 2010 issue of Writer’s Digest features the annual round-up of agents looking for new writers. Chuck Sambuchino does an excellent job as usual in curating this hot list. Just as important, the October issue features standout queries that worked for authors in landing literary representation, including: A masterful and...

How to Score a Traditional Deal After Self-Publishing

Today’s Q&A is with authors Anne Milford and Jennifer Gauvain, who originally self-published their book, How Not to Marry the Wrong Guy, in May 2009. They marketed and promoted like madwomen and then sold the book—at auction!—to Random House in October 2009. The new revised edition came out in May 2010...

The Evolving Role of Literary Agents

Today I’m a guest interviewee over at Jungle Red Writers, on the evolving role of agents. The incredible Hallie Ephron interviews me. Here’s a snippet: Hallie: Is the agent’s traditional role as link between author and publisher going the way of the dodo? Jane: I’d rather say that the agent’s limited...

Your Self-Help Book Should Not Be a Thinly Disguised Memoir

If you’re writing a memoir, and it’s your very first attempt at writing (or writing seriously for publication), odds are good that you won’t yet be skillful enough to pass muster with an agent or editor. (See this YouTube lesson from master storyteller Ira Glass on why.) Many people are sparked...