Friday, November 7, 2014

Finding A Literary Agent

 * Today's article was written by Mathew Wade
Finding an appropriate literary agent is a common challenge most authors these days face. Literary agents are a significant part of book publishing, and without one it's nearly impossible to overpass the red tape for publishing and promoting your work. So you need to approach the right book agent carefully by avoiding common mistakes to ensure selection of your book proposal among the hundreds of proposals.
Here are some common mistakes that authors should avoid when approaching a literary agent with a book proposal.

Poorly written contact letter

Most often, book agents report that they received one too many poorly written query letters. In fact, this is a major reason for the rejection of book proposals by the agents. It is advisable to learn effective techniques to develop a book proposal and then draft one. It isn't really very difficult to compose an impressive query letter, just be cautious when creating one and be sure it is up to snuff.

Offering inappropriate genre or subject to the agent

Another common mistake authors make when choosing a literary agent is approaching an agent that does not match their genre of book. For instance, writers send query letters for publishing their recipe book to an agent who is popular for publishing fictional volumes. Your book proposal won't be accepted if it's not sent to an agent how is known for promoting books matching your genre of work, no matter how impressive your book proposal is. It is highly recommended to choose and approach top literary agents who are known for publishing books that match your genre.

Author hype, arrogance, and ego

Many times agents report that creative writers often harbor big egos. Unbelievable, isn't it? However, this is the fact. At times writers use hyperbole, which tends to deter their glory, to differentiate themselves from the rest. Some authors opt to contradict their competitor authors by using arrogant language. The use of hyperbole, arrogant tone, and superiority deteriorates the impression that literary agents will have of you. Better to keep it simple yet impressive. Use educated language, give up to date information, and put forth your sincerest efforts.

Lack of knowledge about the publishing process:
It has been noticed that many talented and dedicated authors, who master the craft of writing, lack the knowledge about the publishing process. They tend to draft their book proposals in an artistic manner and end up getting poor responses from the agents. When framing a book proposal, you need to address it in a humble and informative manner and not as a literary genius. Your proposal should include information about your target market, how people will benefit from reading your work, and other useful and informative aspects of your book. You should not write it assuming that the literary agents will figure out your target audience on their own. Good knowledge of publishing process, and an informative presentation, will help you succeed when approaching an agent.

Unawareness about book competition

It has been noticed that among 60 agents eight percent of book agents complain that authors are ignorant about the book competition in the market. They have no idea whether their book is really introducing a new, unique concept or it's one among the hundreds of books available in the market. When developing their books and book proposals, authors are absolutely unaware of where their book can land up in the market and end up developing a common, unattractive piece of literary work. Having the right knowledge of your genre of book and the market competition can help you develop a unique, appealing piece of literature.

Avoiding these five common mistakes when approaching a literary agent will help quick approval of your book proposal. So make sure that you avoid these mistakes when developing and approaching the right book agent.

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