Ask a Literary Agent – Submit Your Question About Book Agents

Ask a Literary AgentAsk a literary agent your question here (any question) about getting a literary agency to represent you, so you can get a traditional publisher and book deal. Scroll below to get started. Just make sure you also check out our home page to see all the other info available on this Literary Agents website.

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Submit Your Question Below

What question would you ask a literary agent
if you had one all tied up?

Well, this is your opportunity because…

Ask a Literary Agent a Question About Anything

I’m a former book agent.

There’s a form below where you can submit your question.

And I actually want you to ask a literary agent
(this literary agent) your question.

You see…

I like it when authors ask me questions.

It makes me feel smart.

I like talking about publishing.

Ask a Literary Agent Your Question

And I like…

Helping other authors.

In fact, I like it so much that I didn’t get upset when one author
decided he would ask a literary agent (guess who) a question
in the men’s room at a writer’s conference.

Not while I was washing or drying my hands.


I was literally…
using the restroom.

Ask a literary agent in the restroom

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Ask a Literary Agent a Question
(but not in the bathroom)

It might sound crazy, the fact that I didn’t get upset,
but think of it this way…

How do you feel when someone asks you a question
about something you’re passionate about?

Like (maybe), your writing?

I get excited.

So, don’t hesitate to…

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Ask a Literary Agent (Me) a Question
(the one that’s keeping you awake at night)

Question, ask a literary agent

No question is too big or too small.

And no question is silly.


I’d be honored to help you.

I went undercover as a literary agent for five years
just to find out how get my own books published.

Now I’m having a blast sharing my secrets…
because I know what it’s like out there.


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One More Reason to Submit Your Question

Ask a Literary Agent Your Question

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Each time you ask a literary agent a question (or leave a comment) using the form below (or anywhere else on this website), you’ll have a chance to win a $20 Gift Card from Amazon.

Every week I select a winner (from those who left a question or comment the previous week). You can leave as many questions or comments as you want (that will simply increase your chances of winning), but you only need to comment or ask a question once to be eligible.

Winners are chosen randomly, so flattery will get you everywhere (I mean nowhere). In other words, you can win more than once (multiple weeks) if you consistently ask questions or leave comments. Just make sure your questions and/or comments are thoughtful, and not just obvious attempts to win more gift cards!

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Why Am I Giving Away Gift Cards?

Two reasons:

1) I’m a nice guy

2) I want my online community to be an interactive place so I can be of better service to you. The only way I can do that is to get you engaged (in other words… telling me what you like, don’t like, want, and need).

So, don’t forget to scroll down and ask a literary agent a question below (or simply leave a comment).

Not sure what to say?

Ask me anything about literary agencies, publishing, or writing. Tell me (and everyone else) why you like this column or blog. Or, simply reply to someone else’s question or comment.

That’s it.

I look forward to seeing your thoughts below,

Mark Malatesta

Your “Undercover” Agent

P.S. – Your question/comment will be posted and responded to on my blog ASAP!

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  1. Hi Mark,
    I’m wondering if agents want to know that you previously had an agent. My agent switched agencies shortly after I signed,and couldn’t take all projects along. My ms hasn’t been sent out to editors yet. Should I mention this when querying again?

    • Mark Malatesta

      Hi Judy, if it hasn’t been sent out to editors… it’s not as important to share that info. If it was a reason that doesn’t make you look bad like the health of the agent etc… you might be inclined to mention it because having had an agent makes you more credible. If… on the other hand… you did something wrong or just had a falling out… you might be less likely to mention that.

      If you haven’t already done so, make sure you click here to access all the valuable resources I have about getting an agent in my private, members-only area (no charge): Once you’ve entered your name and email address there, click on the link that says, “Audio Training Library”. Then you’ll see my main audio training (and text transcript), which reveals the 7 Insider Secrets You Need to Know to Get a Top Literary Agent, Publisher, and Book Deal.

      If you want help with anything else, you can post questions for me online here: And you can register for an introductory coaching call with me here: Either way, I’m looking forward to learning more about you and your work.

      Have a good night,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      The Bestselling Author
      Literary Agent Undercover

  2. Mariah K. /

    Hi! I have an unpublished manuscript under consideration with an industry giant. Problem is, it’s for tv and not print! I was going to self publish originally, but now I have people telling me that I should look into going the traditional route. Tv =/= publisher, but my friends seem to think that if one industry has already taken a shine to it, maybe I should try and find representation for my novel instead of going at it alone like I’ve prepared to. Should I be looking into querying agents?

  3. Robert MacLean /

    How do I get an agent for books that are already self-published, MacLean/e/B00287PHIS/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1?

    (I should add that the flagship novel came out with Atheneum/Macmillan.)

  4. E Mills /

    Is it inappropriate to query an agent with a book that has already been published? In this case the publisher is out of business, book is out of print, author owns the rights and would like to take it to another publisher. And if it is ok to query with a pre-published book, are there dos and don’ts of presenting the “already published” information in a query letter?

  5. Diana Schneidman /

    I have sent out an initial round of emails to agents. Attracted some initial interest but that’s all.

    A friend says I’ve done it all wrong. I should find books similar to mine and look at the acknowledgements. Find out who their agent is. Then write him/her a personal email that praises the book that referenced him (and in effect, the agent for having good taste) and show how my book is similar but different enough to be published.

    In other words, quality over quantity. What do you think?

  6. Hello Mark,
    Thank you for this opportunity! What are 3 things that turn agents off in a query letter.
    3 things that really spike their interest?

  7. What’s easiest way to stand out when sending a query for an agent

  8. Hello Mark, I am a new author and I wanted to know if you could tell me if my query letter is okay or needs work. Thanks

    • Mark Malatesta

      Hi Monica, welcome… and yes… I’m happy to help… but I want to make sure you know that I’m a former literary agent turned author coach. Now I help authors get top literary agents, publishers, and book deals.

      To that end…

      I answer general questions online here (no cost). So, if you want help, you can post questions for me online here:

      You can also get 1-on-1 feedback on things like pitch materials such as query letters, samples pages, websites/blogs, etc. by registering for a introductory coaching call with me (more information about how to do that below).

      And (if you haven’t done so already) get access (no cost) to all the valuable resources in our private, members-only area here: And, again, you can register for an introductory coaching call with me here:

      Either way, I’m looking forward to learning more about you and your work.

      Have a great day,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      The Bestselling Author
      Literary Agent Undercover

  9. Hello Mark,

    I am an stage director, playwright, and theater arts & ESL educator with over 30 years of diverse experience, but I am not ‘branded’. I am produced but have been out of the ‘scene’ for a number of years. I am currently living in Asia where I teach ESL and Acting. I have play scripts, a short play/skit collection, a couple of film scripts, and theater arts education materials (ex. improv. starter uppers).

    Can you possibly assist? Should I consider an hour consultation?

    • Mark Malatesta

      Hi Robert, I’m sorry to say probably not. Although some authors I’ve worked with have had their work adapted for TV, stage, and feature film… my main specialty is helping authors get top literary agents, publishers, and book deals. That often leads to interest in the other areas, through the author’s agent or publisher. To that end, most top agents who represent fiction help on the TV/film front or they partner up (co-agent) with another successful agency that does it.

      All my best,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      The Bestselling Author
      Literary Agent Undercover

  10. Cheryl A. Blanchard /

    What do you know about Page Publishing?