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Literary Agents

Did Someone Say 'Classic'? Dr. Seuss's The Cat in the Hat Could Not Be Published Today

Peter Mandel | Posted 02.18.2014 | Comedy
Peter Mandel

You may know that Dr. Seuss's real name was Theodor Geisel. But bet you didn't know this: The Cat in the Hat could not be published today. Repeat: It couldn't make the cut.

Why I Write For Free

Kristen Hansen Brakeman | Posted 02.08.2014 | Media
Kristen Hansen Brakeman

Sure it would be great if we could pick a day where each town crier would climb to the top of a mountain and yell, "Henceforth, no more free words!" But in the real world, it's just not going to work.

Booking Bad: Dying Author Has Difficult Conversation With Literary Agent

Linda Howard Urbach | Posted 01.25.2014 | Comedy
Linda Howard Urbach

It had been two and a half years since I received his last report. I didn't want to bug him, but my time is very short. I desperately needed a sale.

Writing Taboo

Tracy Strauss | Posted 01.23.2014 | Home
Tracy Strauss

While sexual abuse may be the context of my memoir, it is not my story. My story, in fact, is not about trauma or anything remotely "taboo" -- my story is about transcendence.

Why Agents Reject 96% of Author Submissions

Heather Hummel | Posted 01.23.2014 | Home
Heather Hummel

The reason for rejections typically comes down to a few key issues. Follow these solutions, and my bet is doors will start opening.

Queen for a Day: Surviving Blogher

William Dameron | Posted 01.23.2014 | Media
William Dameron

My plan for the conference was simple. I would casually bump into a literary agent who would immediately recognize me and sign me up on the spot.

Where You Live Might Change Your Writing Career

Lev Raphael | Posted 10.28.2013 | Home
Lev Raphael

Writers and other publishing types love to give new writers advice about how to be successful. But there's one subject they never mention: location.

My Writing Journey to Publishing Continues, Part 5

Carol Hoenig | Posted 10.12.2013 | Home
Carol Hoenig

I will always remember that day, not only because of that validating review, but that was the very same day that my job, along with several of my peers, was eliminated at Borders Books.

My Writing Journey Toward Publishing Continues, Part 4

Carol Hoenig | Posted 10.05.2013 | Home
Carol Hoenig

Recently, I picked up a journal I had begun keeping when I committed to this writing thing and came across this entry from years ago: I had a twinge of uneasiness tonight in regards to Place of Angels. What if I can't sell this one, either? Then what?

What Makes a Character 'Midwestern?'

Nina Badzin | Posted 10.05.2013 | Home
Nina Badzin

"Southern" conjures up certain images and characteristics in my mind. Same goes for the West Coast, Upper Northwest, Southwest, New York, and New England. But what about the Midwest? What does it mean to be Midwestern?

WRITER WEDNESDAY: Tips For Dealing With Literary Agents

| Posted 05.15.2013 | Home

By Writer's Relief staff: If you’ve sent your query to a handful of literary agents and one comes back asking you for an exclusive, don’t get n...

10 Things I Wish I Knew About Being an Author That I Learned the Hard Way

Deborah Plummer | Posted 05.19.2013 | Home
Deborah Plummer

I have been blessed to be a published author both by the traditional process and I have self-published where I managed every aspect of the process. From both processes, here is what I have learned.

Sharon, Will You Go Out With Me?

John Malik | Posted 03.04.2013 | Home
John Malik

The process and emotions are eerily similar. I plot, plan and carefully script the query to my novel hoping that the object of my desire will say yes please, show me a bit more.

Unlucky '13: 10 Predictions of How It's Gonna Get Worse for New York Publishers in the Coming Year

Michael Levin | Posted 03.02.2013 | Home
Michael Levin

Maybe the Mayans had the American publishing industry in mind when their calendar conked out. If you thought 2012 was a bad year for traditional book publishing, and it was, you'll be nostalgic for it by the end of 2013.

7 Great Things About Being a Writer (and Seven More That Suck)

Jason Pinter | Posted 01.30.2013 | Home
Jason Pinter

One time I got a package containing a tattered copy of my book along with a handwritten note. To a writer, this is like going up to a stranger and telling them that a) they could use some plastic surgery, and b) you'd like to perform it yourself.

US Publishers Remain Fascinated by Lives of the Fading WASP Elite

Alan Elsner | Posted 01.23.2014 | Home
Alan Elsner

In modern America, the heyday of the White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, also known as the WASP, is some decades behind us. But in American literature, WASPs continue to fascinate -- perhaps because the publishing industry is one of their last redoubts.

First, Stop All the Literary Agents

Lev Raphael | Posted 12.03.2012 | Home
Lev Raphael

I keep meeting authors who rave about their agents as if they were combinations of the Buddha and Captain America. My own experience with agents has been anything but positive, and the first agent who took me on was a paragon of imperfection.

Literary Agents You Should Avoid

| Posted 09.05.2012 | Home

By Writer's Relief staff: Beginner and veteran writers alike can be victimized by shady literary agents. If you don’t know what to look for, you...

Ten Tips for Nabbing Yourself a Literary Agent

Jay Clark | Posted 08.25.2012 | Home
Jay Clark

So, after years of torturing yourself beyond emotional repair, making several highly unnecessary sacrifices to the gods, and, finally, signing a contract (in blood) entitled Deal with the Devil, you've managed to finish your book.

How To Follow Up With A Literary Agent

| Posted 05.30.2012 | Home

From Writer's Relief staff: It’s hard to be patient when you’ve sent out a query letter and still haven’t heard back from your literary age...

11 Mistakes Writers Make When Approaching Literary Agents

| Posted 05.16.2012 | Home

From Writer’s Relief staff: Let’s face it: Writing a book requires different skills than writing a query letter. While there are no “rules”...

I Could Write a Book About My Book Ordeal!

Dave Astor | Posted 07.10.2012 | Home
Dave Astor

Celebrity entertainers and politicians have no problem getting their memoirs published. So a book partly about celebrity entertainers and politicians should have had no problem getting published, right?

Writers Wednesday: 10 Ways To Annoy Literary Agents

| Posted 05.02.2012 | Home

From Writer's Relief staff: In the tradition of David Letterman’s Late Show Top Ten, the submission strategists at Writer’s Relief want to shar...

New 'Dracula' Document By Author Bram Stoker Being Released

Posted 03.26.2012 | Home

"Dracula" author Bram Stoker was more than a skillful Gothic penman. He also studied law, and his talents are evident in the legal contract for his bl...

The (Un)Romantic Path of Literary Fiction: Alfred A. Knopf (Part I)

Rex Pickett | Posted 05.20.2012 | Home
Rex Pickett

I have made a couple horrible, irremediable decisions in my life, but this decision to accept the writing of The Road Back for Knopf would go down as the worst I have ever made.