Posts Tagged ‘agents’

Congrats to Alissa Grosso

If you haven’t done so already, hop on over to Alissa Grosso’s Blog and congratulate her. She just signed with a fantastic agent!!

Alissa’s debut YA novel The Subrosa Semesters, will be published in March 2011 by Flux, a book deal she orchestrated on her own. Now she has Jim McCarthy of Dystel & Goderich Literary Management in her corner.

Way to go, Alissa!!

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A week ago I had the pleasure of facilitating a discussion with Kendra Marcus of Bookstop Literary Agency. Kendra was in Fairbanks visiting her daughter and offered a free question and answer session to any and all writers.

Kendra contacted Alaskan author Deb Vanasse through SCBWI and Deb (who is one of my long distance critique partners) contacted me. For writers in Fairbanks this was quite a treat. We don’t get many literary agents just stopping by and holding free sessions.

Luckily for us, Kendra enjoys winter weather.

At the end of the session I offered Kendra a ride. She thanked me for the offer but said she wanted to walk the mile up to the University, where she was meeting her daughter. It was a windy day, about 8 above zero.

As for the discussion, I didn’t have to do much facilitating because the ten writers, some published some not, some agented some not, who materialized at the Coffee House were bursting with questions, and Kendra’s responses led to more questions. Kendra even did a first page critique for one writer.

Her love for picture books, middle grade and young adult literature was very apparent. And she knows the book business; she’s been an agent since 1984. If she’s not already on your agent list, check out her website and see what you think.

Here are a few thoughts from Kendra regarding submissions:

1.  Make sure your story has layers of complexity. Too often I see stories that are just dealing with the surface. They don’t go deep enough.

2.  Let the character drive the plot.

3.  Pretend I’m a kid. You have to get my interest on the first page.

How do you know when your first page is doing its job? How do you know when you’ve gone deep enough in your story? How do you decide when your story is ready for submission? I’d love to hear your thoughts on any or all of these questions. Thanks!

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A couple of fun links

If you’re in need of laughter, check out Betsy Lerner’s post on writing a synopsis at The Forest for the Trees.

If you want to smile, read Kyra’s interview with agent, Stephen Fraser at Throwing Up Words.

Have a great weekend!!

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Two Cool Things

I normally don’t post mid-week but wanted to draw your attention to these  links.  They are not related except that both were penned by experts.

The first is a crafty piece by Betsy Lerner on voice. I can always count on Betsy’s posts to be entertaining and thought provoking. It is the exception if I don’t laugh out loud at least once when I read her posts. Today she wants your thoughts on voice.

The second is a piece by Noah Lukeman. His thoughts on how long it might take an agented writer to land a book deal. He shares his thoughts on various submission strategies.

Both of these experts welcome questions from readers, so if you’re wondering about something publishing or writing related, drop them a line.

Happy Writing to all!

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