Once upon a time, I queried agents for an early chapter book. They all rejected it, and they should have.
Later, I tried with Christian women’s fiction. I happen to think that these novels were and are as good as many (although far from all) of the ones published by Christian publishers, and hopefully that isn’t all hubris. But again I found nothing but rejection.
My writing has continued to improve, and I have now found my true passion in middle grade historical fiction. So is it time to try again?
My past experience looking for agents and the wisdom gleaned from other writers has taught me two things.
(1) First, it’s almost as hard to find a good agent as it is to find a traditional publisher and, as a corrolary, those agents that are easy to find don’t have the necessary connections.
(2) Second, author and agent need to click together like puzzle pieces. An effective author-agent relationship is also a close one, and personality matters.
Since I don’t need an agent to review my publishing contract and tell me what to negotiate, I was hoping to get away without one. But there is more to an agent’s job than just understanding and negotiating a contract. I’m not a good salesperson, and the larger, more-established publishing houses don’t take unagented submissions. They make exceptions for people who attend conferences where they appear and I take advantage of those opportunities, but that still leaves a number of closed doors. So I have given in and am searching for an agent again.
Let’s hope it goes better this time.