Rejoice, For I Have Risen from the Slush (or, How I Found My Agent)

My latest post at Dead Darlings is all about how I found my wonderful agent, Patricia Nelson of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. This is more a “how I found my agent” vs. “how to find an agent” because I don’t have the answers. I revised my manuscript multiple times, kept at it, and got lucky. There are some basic rules you can follow but the process depends on so many variables: genre, subject, agent subjectivity, etc. Of all the writers I know who have found agents, the one commonality has been: be patient. There’s a lot of waiting involved in this industry.

Rejoice, For I Have Risen from Slush (or, How I Found My Agent)

Originally posted at Dead Darlings.

I have a complicated relationship with the word “slush.” In the seventh grade, my stepbrother ratted me out for “borrowing” 71 pennies from my parents’ penny jar to buy a slushie at the 7-11. I got a stern talking to, which included several mentions of the word “disappointed.” After multiple episodes of trying to break my parents’ rules and never getting away with it, I finally decided to follow the rules instead. Still, every time I see a slushie, I’m reminded of how close I came to a life of petty crime.

Fast forward to January 2012. During my Novel Incubator class, my classmates and I were asked to submit our picks from a list of literary agents participating in GrubStreet’s Muse and the Marketplace Manuscript Mart. Up until that point, I hadn’t put much thought into publishing anything I wrote. That’s what novelists did. I was not a novelist. I was a person with a history of bad poetry, abandoned screenplays, and creative writing class receipts.

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