Commercial, Mainstream, General, or Literary Fiction?

Commercial, Mainstream, General, or Literary Fiction?

If you’re a novelist, it doesn’t matter how compelling your story is or how clean your writing is. You won’t get a literary agent to represent you unless you categorize your book correctly. Label your novel with the wrong book genre(s) in your query letter and you run the risk of getting “false positives” that will only lead to rejection. In other words, if you...

Pick It, Bump It, Drill It – The Best Query Letter Hook

Pick It, Bump It, Drill It – The Best Query Letter Hook

What can you learn about getting a top literary agent, publisher, and book deal by getting locked out of your house? A lot. Here’s what happened… A few weeks ago, my wife and business partner, Ingrid Elfver, and I arrived home from a relaxing Friday night dinner out. It was about 8 pm and dark outside as we got undressed, put on our robes, and started looking...

Is Social Media Important to Literary Agents and Publishers?

Is Social Media Important to Literary Agents and Publishers?

As a former literary agent turned author coach, one of the questions I’m asked most is, “Do I need social media to impress literary agents and/or publishers and, if so, how many followers do I need?” In many cases, social media can be an important factor in whether you get a top literary agent, publisher, and/or book deal. But before I tell...

It’s Not What You Say…

It’s Not What You Say…

This article will help you do a better job promoting your book(s) to literary agents (as well as to publishers, the media, and the general reading public). Here’s the secret… What you say always matters, but when you say it also matters. In other words, if you say the right thing at the wrong time, you might get the opposite result of what you’re hoping...

SEO for Authors – Get More Exposure, Improve Your Platform

SEO for Authors – Get More Exposure, Improve Your Platform

There are lots of ways you can have more impact as an author–but I can’t think of a faster and easier one than having a website that gets a lot of visitors. In fact, having a good website can help you get a book deal with a traditional publisher like Random House… if that’s something you want. By the way, click here now if you haven’t...

5 “Stupid” Things That Literary Agents Say and Do

5 “Stupid” Things That Literary Agents Say and Do

A couple weeks ago an author on my mailing list, trying to stay afloat in a flood of rejection letters, shared an article with me that he’d written. It talked about the stupid things literary agents say and do when rejecting authors. He made some good points. One of them was that rejection letters often contain “misguided, clumsy attempts at...