People have an unfortunate habit of measuring their own progress according to the progress of others. Writers take this habit to new heights. Or depths, depending upon your point of view. Which is exactly why when two unacquainted writers strike up a conversation, one question is inevitably asked:
“Do you have an agent?”
It’s always that. Always. “Are you published?” would maybe seem to make more sense. After all, that’s the ultimate goal. But the great secret of professional writing is that in an age of vanity and self-publishing, it’s more difficult to sign with an agent than to get your book on a shelf.
Which is why many consider literary agents to be the rock stars of the publishing world. They hold the keys to the kingdom. Manage to catch the attention of one, and you’ve all but made it as a writer.
That’s what I thought, anyway. But as is often the case with many of my assumptions, that one turned out to be wrong.
By my count I queried nearly forty agents before one finally showed interest in my book. Fortunately those forty rejections turned out to be quite a blessing, because the one agent who said yes happened to be Rachelle Gardner.
I’m sure most of you know Rachelle through her blog, which has a wealth of information and insight into the publishing business. She’s informed, wise, and both very friendly and a consummate professional.
And she’s also very, very cool. How cool? Cool enough to let me guest post for her today.
So follow me to her blog, where I talk about life after getting an agent, my wrong assumption, and how every writer’s journey to publication can be defined by what I call The Middle Rule.