Skip to main content

How to Find Out Who Agented a Book

  • Author:
  • Publish date:

Q: When an agent isn't listed in the author's book acknowledgements, is there a way to search backwards to find that agent from the author, journalistic facilitator or publisher? Thanks for your expertise. —Alice Lazzarini

A: Finding out who was the agent of a particular book can certainly be tricky, especially if the person isn't mentioned in the acknowledgements—which is the publishing equivalent of not thanking your wife during your Oscar acceptance speech. And here you can't blame it on the orchestra playing you off.

There are several other ways to find out who represented a particular book or author, though. The simplest way is by typing the book's title (or the author's name) and "agent" into a search engine, like Google or Yahoo. Click through the top few links and see what you find. Often it can be as simple as going to the author's website and digging around.

If you don't have any luck finding the agent's name on the author's website, you generally can find contact information (most likely an e-mail address) for the author or the author's publicist. Feel free to shoot the author (or the publicist) an e-mail. I wouldn't sit around longer than a few days waiting for a response, but you might get lucky.

When all else fails, you can call the publisher, says Guide to Literary Agents Editor Chuck Sambuchino. "If you see that Knopf published The Neptune Paradox (the book whose agent you want), call Knopf's main line and speak to the operator. Explain your goal and request to speak with the editor who worked on the book. The operator will say, 'Oh, that's Judy Smith. I'll transfer you.' You won't talk to Judy, but rather her assistant. No matter. Ask the assistant if Judy did indeed edit The Neptune Paradox. When the assistant confirms Judy's involvement, kindly request to know who the book's acting literary agent was. She'll be happy to tell you."

When you finally publish your book, be sure to mention your agent in your acknowledgements. Not only will your agent thank you, other writers will too.

Brian A. Klems is the online managing editor of Writer’s Digest magazine.

Have a question for me? Feel free to post it in the comments section below or e-mail me at with “Q&Q” in the subject line. Come back each Tuesday as I try to give you more insight into the writing life.

The Idaho Review: Market Spotlight

The Idaho Review: Market Spotlight

For this week's market spotlight, we look at The Idaho Review, a literary journal accepting poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction submissions.

Abbreviation vs. Acronym vs. Initialism (Grammar Rules)

Abbreviation vs. Acronym vs. Initialism (Grammar Rules)

Learn when you're using an abbreviation vs. acronym vs. initialism with Grammar Rules from the Writer's Digest editors, including a few examples of correct usages.

What Is Investigative Journalism?

What Is Investigative Journalism?

Alison Hill breaks down the definition of investigative journalism, how good investigative journalism makes for sweeping societal change, and how the landscape of the work is evolving.

writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: 6 WDU Courses, an Upcoming Virtual Conference, and More!

This week, we’re excited to announce six new WDU courses, a romance writing virtual conference, and more!

Going From Me to We: Collaborating on the Writing of a Novel

Going From Me to We: Collaborating on the Writing of a Novel

Past experiences taught bestselling author Alan Russell to tread lightly when it came to collaborating on projects. Here, he discusses how the right person and the right story helped him go from a “me” to a “we.”

From Script

Short Film Goals, Writing the Cinematic Experience on the Page and Sundance Film Festival 2022 (From Script)

In this week’s round up brought to us by Script magazine, set your creative goals with a monthly guide to write and produce your short film, provided by Script contributor Rebecca Norris Resnick. Plus, an exclusive interview with Academy Award-winning screenwriter William Monahan, a Sundance Film Festival 2022 day one recap, and more!

Your Story Writing Prompts

94 Your Story Writing Prompts

Due to popular demand, we've assembled all the Your Story writing prompts on in one post. Click the link to find each prompt, the winners, and more.

How Inspiration and Research Shape a Novel

How Inspiration and Research Shape a Novel

Historical fiction relies on research to help a story’s authenticity—but it can also lead to developments in the story itself. Here, author Lora Davies discusses how inspiration and research helped shape her new novel, The Widow’s Last Secret.

Poetic Forms

Saraband: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the saraband, a septet (or seven-line) form based on a forbidden dance.