Joelle Delbourgo

Literary Agent

Joelle Delbourgo Associates

Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

The process of querying agents can be really hard for writers who have worked in some cases for years before sending out their work. Have courage. But also, be strategic and careful. A lot of rejection is avoidable, the result of queries that are not targeted. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

May I gently suggest that writers hold off sending queries to agents until after Thanksgiving. You are more likely to get our attention. #publishing, #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Among the thing to look for in an agent/writer relationship is a commitment to your work for the long term. A good agent is someone who cares about your career, your vision and your goals, not just about making a deal. Fortunately, I have many wonderful colleagues.
#pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Writers: sending a query letter to a lit agent without a subject line guarantees that we won't even read that query. Having the word "query" or "submission" in the subject line makes it clear when we are scrolling through avalanches of emails. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

The next three days are not the best ones to submit your work to lit agents. We're a little caught up in the state of the nation. You'll get more attention next week! #publishing, #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

If you're pitching your book to lit agents, consider if there's a timely "hook." Always consider what's going on in the zeitgeist when submitting. It won't apply to every book but it is something to keep in mind. #pubtip, #publishing

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Some of my publishing colleagues are losing their jobs, or being furloughed or suspended, salaries cut. Writers, before you send that query, ask yourself: is now the best time? It may be...but then it may not. Think before you send. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Publishing is in turmoil right now. Staff cuts, pay cuts, furloughs of staff, postponed shipments, closed bookstores. I am focusing on the most timely projects and urgent concerns of our clients. Calibrate your communications to the times we are in. Patience & courage! #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

For authors who are thinking of submitting new work. Make sure it's truly ready. Is is relevant to this moment? Context matters. Publishers are working from home, some are furloughed or have been cut from their jobs. Most bookstores are closed. Think before you send. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

From @lithub: Book tours are canceled, but authors are using social media to prop one another up. | Publishers Weekly
#pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Dear Writers: We're not considering unsolicited submissions unless through referral until June 1. Instead, we are focusing on the needs of our existing clients. Other agents may have different policies in place. Check agency websites before submitting. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

I can't speak for all lit agents, but I suggest writers defer sending out all but the most timely new projects for now. We all have a lot on our plates, are working from home and have to focus on top priorities, plus keep safe. Spend this time polishing your work. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

So many writers' queries show that they have little understanding of what we're looking for. Lack of response or rejection from agents inevitably results when a writer doesn't do due diligence. Agents have websites that yield a lot of info re what they are looking for. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

I am constantly surprised that prospective authors will cold call an agent rather than check their website first to see if the match is a good one for their work, and what the submission requirements are. Taking that extra step can make all the difference. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

So many query letters from prospective writers are rambling or unclear. Often, titles are mystifying. This is a sure road to rejection. Before submitting to a lit agent, take care to craft the best possible letter to showcase your smarts and talent. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

I have noticed an uptick in snarky responses by writers whose work we do not take on. Lit agents know how frustrating the process can be for writers, but we are under no obligation to offer representation. The agent who fully embraces your work is the right one for you. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Writers: If you don't bother to sign your query letter, it's unlikely you'll hear back. Just sayin'.
#pubtip, #litagentadvice

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

It always amazes me how many clients move without notifying their agent. If you are an author, remember to keep your lit agent, editor & publisher apprised of address changes as long as your book remains in print or available in some form. #pubtip

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

If you're pitching a book to an agent, make sure you're well read in the genre you're writing--know your competition so you can stand out in how you pitch. #pubtip, #publishing

Joelle Delbourgo
@JLDelbourgo
Literary Agent
Literary agent, former editor, unabashed foodie, culture hound, citizen of the world, environmentalist, truth seeker, proud mom, dances to a Latin beat.
95 Tips

Query letters to lit agents that plunge in to elaborate plot description are off-putting. Hooking in the agent with a great log line or premise is more effective. #pubtip, #publishing