When trying to get your manuscript published, it's often beneficial to have an agent on your side. Agents not only have connections within the publishing industry but they also read hundreds of proposals a year, giving them better perspective of what will sell and what won't. They often offer suggestions and advice on how to get your manuscript into publishable shape (whether that's change a character, introduce an additional storyline, or start the story in a different spot, etc.).
One of the best resources for finding an agent is the Guide to Literary Agents, which is the bible for finding representation—heck, it helped me find and land my agent. It features spot-on advice on how to approach querying and has more than 500 agent listings, including what types of books they are looking for, how each one wants you to pitch them and more.
GLA editor Chuck Sambuchino gives you a sneak peek on his GLA blog, posting his popular new agent alerts, highlighting up-and-coming agents and agents that have recently moved to new agencies. More important, all of them are looking for new clients. Here are five agents whom he's featured and who are looking to sign new writers:
She is seeking: Her first love is YA– from High Fantasy to Paranormal to to soft Sci-Fi to Contemporary– she loves all young adult. She also likes high concept, adventure themed, and funny MG, but a strong voice is MUST for her in MG. She’s willing to look at Picture Books, but is very selective.
She is seeking: adult fiction only. Specifically, she seeks romance, science fiction, thrillers, action/adventure, historical fiction, Western, fantasy (think Song of Fire and Ice or Dark Tower, NOT Lord of the Rings or Chronicles of Narnia).
She is seeking: Sam is looking for character-driven stories with strong voice. She likes characters who are relatable yet flawed, vibrant settings that take on a life of their own, and a story that lasts well beyond the final page, generally falling within these categories: Literary fiction, Historical fiction, Mystery/suspense, Magical realism, Psychological thrillers, Young adult (realistic) and Narrative nonfiction.
4. Jordy Albert and Brittany Booker form The Booker Albert Literary Agency*
Jordy is seeking: Romance (contemporary, historical/regency, and paranormal). YA contemporary/historical or dystopian, sci-fi/fantasy with romance weaved throughout. She is also open to YA GLBT within those genres. Jordy would love to see unique, well-developed plots featuring time travel, competitions, or travel. She enjoys intelligent, quirky characters with a self-deprecating sense of humor, and wants to get lost in a story.
Brittany is seeking: She is looking for page turning historical fictions, contemporary romances, and urban fantasy. In YA, she is looking for all genres, but is specifically looking for a time travel story.
She is seeking: science fiction, fantasy, and mysteries — and is particularly interested in finding works that creatively combine aspects of all three genres.
For more news and information about agents, I highly recommend checking out the Guide to Literary Agents Blog and getting a copy of the 2013 Guide to Literary Agents. Both are extremely valuable resources and, without them, I may never have been able to land my agent (or secure a book deal).
* NOTE: Agent Andy Scheer was originally on this but is no longer seeking new clients, so please refrain from sending material his way.
Want to learn more?Expand your publishing knowledge with these great writing books and online resources: