In preparation for PitDark next week, my daughter and I have been working on a project trailer for The Lost Daughter. Book trailers are kind of a thing now, but I really want to start building interest before that.
Interest in the book. But more importantly, interest in me.
The next step of my journey is huge. When I take this manuscript and start querying, I am putting my creative self out into the world and looking for a business partner. Because that is what an agent is. They know the ins-and-outs of the publishing world. They know the flow and the pace. They have the contacts and the editors on speed dial.
For a writer whose dream is to have a career as a traditionally published author, they have everything I don’t.
It’s not a decision I’m taking lightly. I see the agent-author relationship as a partnership. We rise and fall together. It requires trust and communication and a serious belief in each other.
It’s like a Reese’s cup. Peanut butter and chocolate.
Or maybe a fine-tuned machine — let’s go with that. The other makes me hungry.
I am an emerging author at the start of my career with tons of stories left to tell, just chomping at the bit to get out. I’m passionate about engaging with writers and readers, sharing my experience and knowledge, pushing them to follow their dreams. I do my own voice work and videos. I facilitate workshops and run a podcast. I’m a creative powerhouse.
My ideal agent knows the business and is willing to mentor me in the parts I need to learn. They believe in me and my talent. They get my stories. They are committed to a long-term relationship, partnering with me to build my career. They see me as an investment in their career (authors are, you know — agents invest a lot of time and that time needs to pay off). They are as passionate and as go-getting and quirky as I am. They are a literary machine.
Literary Machine + Creative Powerhouse. Form + Force. Yang + Yin. The unstoppable combination.
This is the #1 reason I have been so dead-set on traditional publishing. Yes, the name recognition, the ability to say I got a book deal, all of that is good, too. But this is an industry that relies on finding ways to take creative works and turn them into entertainment and profit. And a good agent thrives on making that happen so I can do the part I’m good at — making art.
As I enter the querying phase, I hope that that choice will soon be before me. It’s not one I take lightly. If anything, I’m more nervous about it than everything that comes after.
I don’t just want an agent. I want the agent that is right for me.