Free literary agents list below with tips to help you find representation for your book. Just make sure it’s the only free book agents list that you use. Scroll below to find out why other free directories can cost you years of time, thousands of dollars, and (quite possibly) your writing career.
This article is part of a 9-part series designed to help you Find an Agent in Our Directory of Literary Agents.
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Free Literary Agents List – WARNING
Using a free literary agents list is almost always a bad idea, because the quality of the information is almost always bad. In other words, the data that you’ll find on a free book agents list is often incomplete and/or unreliable. That makes it more difficult to find the best fit for your book. A lot of the data on a free book agents list is usually old. You’ll find “active” listings for author representatives that are deceased, retired, or working for a new literary agency. You’ll also find that the average free book agents list contains many unethical or fraudulent literary agencies.
There are a lot of literary agencies to choose from, so this might not seem that important. But trust me, there aren’t as many reputable literary agencies out there as you might think. A lot of them aren’t looking for new clients. And only some of the remaining literary agencies are looking for your particular book genre or category. But using bad literary agency info from a free literary agents list can actually damage your writing career.
- If you don’t have enough literary agencies on your wish list, you might not get author representation
- If you don’t have enough well-matched literary agencies on your wish list, you might not get author representation
- If you don’t have a high-quality list, you might end up getting a mediocre or unethical literary agency instead of a really good one
3 Reasons Not to Use a Free Literary Agents List
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Warning #1 – Free Literary Agents List
The literary agents on your typical free book agents list didn’t ask to be put there, meaning they didn’t post their profile or review it — so the information that you’re relying on to get representation is outdated and/or incorrect. When I was running my own literary agency, we were included on many free literary agents list websites. Every once in a while we would be reminded of that fact when an author would send us a book that wasn’t a good fit for us, and cite information they’d gotten from one of the free literary agents list websites.
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Warning #2 – Free Literary Agents List
There’s no major incentive for the creator of most free literary agents list websites to ensure that the information there is accurate (or stays accurate). Many of these free literary agents list websites aren’t built by a proud business owner standing behind them, wanting to deliver a quality product. Instead they’re created by invisible entrepreneurs hoping to generate lots of website traffic so they can sell advertising.
That’s very different from the creators of the 2013 Guide to Literary Agents (Writer’s Digest Books), and the Jeff Herman’s Directory of Agents (Sourcebooks). Our Directory of Literary Agents (here at Literary Agent Undercover) has to be accurate as well, because we use it as our master list to create highly targeted literary agent lists for our 1-on-1 coaching clients.
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Warning #3 – Free Literary Agents List
The information on your typical free literary agents list was probably taken from other (more reliable) sources, making it an outdated and incomplete copy. If you compare specific literary agency listings at some of the free literary agents list websites, you’ll see what I mean.
Compiling and maintaining a comprehensive (and accurate) literary agency database takes a lot of work. And the only way to make sure a list is accurate, is to personally contact the literary agents on the list to verify the information. There are only four agent directories I know of that are based on verified data through mail, email, and/or phone contact.
- The Directory of Literary Agents compiled by Literary Agent Undercover
- The 2013 Guide to Literary Agents published by Writer’s Digest Books
- Jeff Herman’s Directory of Agents published by Sourcebooks
- Literary Marketplace published by Information Today, Inc.
Now that you know the bad news about your typical free literary agents list, here’s the good news. There is one free literary agents list that you can rely on.
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Get Access Now to Our Free Literary Agents List-
The Directory of Literary Agents
Our Directory of Literary Agents is the most comprehensive (and accurate) list of literary agents in the world… plus it’s the easiest to use. Simply click here to see our Publishing Agents Directory and get instant access to:
- US and intl literary agents (1,000+ agents)
- Search by book genre/category (116 of them)
- Full-length agent biographies and photos
- AAR membership status
- Query letter method (email, online form, post)
- Links to agent websites and maps to their offices
- Personal email and postal addresses
If you liked this article warning you about using a Free Literary Agents List
click here to read the next section in this 9-part series, that explains
How to Create Your Literary Agent List.