Jack King A New King of Thrillers

Targeted Directory of literary agents and editors of commercial fiction


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spywriter See what it took to publish my first novel spywriter

Welcome to my personal list of literary agents and publishers / editors who acquire commercial fiction. The list helped me find a literary agent who robbed me, and an editor who published me. All information comes from open sources: Google, blogs, testimonials, agency news, industry publications, writers' conferences, etc. I update the list intermittently, and limit to those agents and editors who might be interested in the type of books I write: commercial fiction, written under several pennames.

FOR WRITERS. What I learned over the years: Most agents / editors do not reply to queries. At all. It's a strange world, I know. I worked with some of the most despicable people in the world, truly malignant government slugs (are there any other kind?). Yet, if you wrote to them, they'd write back, if only a form letter. Meanwhile most agents don't have the courtesy to reply with a simple: "No, thanks", but have the time to tweet dozens of times a day. (There are, of course, stellar exceptions.) Editors are a somewhat different story. Most publishing houses forbid editors from considering submissions from writers. Yet, some will. They will ask to see the MS. If they like it, they will suggest an agent. It depends how high you aim. An editorial assistant might be too low on the company ladder, even if she acquires, whereas an executive might bend the rules. That's how I became a published author in the first place. In addition, some imprints (including those within the Big 5) open to submissions periodically - keep an eye on those.

Query by email whenever possible. Query Forms are becoming common, but are a nightmare to keep track of. Email the recipient directly, rather than a general email address (else you won't know who read your query). Open a dedicated email account, and use a good email client, one that allows you to search by a variety of ways: To, From, Body, Subject, etc. You'll appreciate it after sending out hundreds of queries. Use a different email account to re-requery after some months. Beware submitting a manuscript to personal, rather than company emails. Consider this: submitting a manuscript to a Gmail address means giving away the entire book to Alphabet. Verify all information published here before submitting any material.

Be persistent, and do not give up.

Keep in mind that agenting / publishing is a dynamic business these days. Agent / Editor requirements change. Agents and Editors move (more frequently than I can keep track of). Google their names and check individual interests before approaching.

Finally, see what it took to publish my first novel. The experience holds true with each new penname.

FOR AGENTS / EDITORS. Email me if you want something updated. I do not use "social" media and will not receive any communication this way.




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