P.S. Literary Agency
Literary Agent (@PSLiterary), Author. Latest, YOU CAN GO YOUR OWN WAY (@InkyardPress) and JAGGED LITTLE PILL: THE NOVEL (@abramskids). Loves @BeautyBritches .
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- #askPSLA (51)
- #querywin (2)
- #askDVpit (1)
- #asklitAOC (11)
Thanks for joining the Q&A!
Have more questions? Me and @agentvicente have TONS of free resources on our sites. Query letters, proposal guides, etc!
Stop by. #askPSLA
Trenchcoat Full of Corgis Pretending to be Human: ericsmithrocks.com/perfect-pitch
Adrianne Karasek @AdrianneKar#askPSLA
If you saw an author get very close to signing with an agency but not quite making it (like an R&R from one agent, two agents requesting fulls of another project, etc, all 3 agents saying they liked the writing), what advice would you give?
I’d say that you’re almost there! I’ve had authors in the same position. Acquisitions multiple times. R&Rs. Lots of almosts… and then a yes.
IE: @mikechenwriter’s story. mikechenbooks.com/2019/01/then-a… #askPSLA
Marsha S @MizzMarshaSAny feedback / perspective in regards to crossover preferences or do you prefer clean boxes that fit in XYZ? #askPSLA
I feel like a lot of the adult books that I work on are ALL crossover books that don’t fit someplace neatly. And that’s what makes them so special?
Genre blending crossover books are always popular. I’m a fan! #askPSLA
Alisa Hewitt @SparkleFireDWhat is a piece of advice you'd give to your "younger" writing self? #askPSLA
To not have pointless goal posts set for myself.
You don’t need an agent by age whatever. A published book at age this or that. A bestseller whenever.
What you need is to take your time. Make friends. Breathe. Remember that there’s more to you than what you’re writing. #askPSLA
sal @salbux@PSLiterary @agentvicente @ericsmithrocks Are author websites important these days? What do I include if I’m unpublished and starting out? #askPSLA
I’ve signed authors with no website, but I had them make a website right away.
Because I fear @MissDahlELama and @recitrachel, but also because it’s a great way to showcase who you are. Your home base.
You don’t need to be published yet, to have a simple homepage. #askPSLA
Cassie Silva @cassieswriting@PSLiterary @agentvicente @ericsmithrocks #ASKPSLA what are some trends in the market you are seeing? (especially MG/YA but interested in any answer!)
Trends in publishing are such a hard thing to point to, because often times when you spot it, it’s already happened?
I do know a lot of editor friends are asking for more MG/YA horror, and works in verse. #askPSLA
Nicole Buran @BuranNicole@ericsmithrocks @jd_hathaway @PSLiterary @agentvicente Are credentials as important for memoir as for other nonfiction works?
It depends. Someone like me, who works on memoir in essays, I like to see a body of published work. Chances are your essay collection is about something. I like to see you’re an expert there.
IE: @JamesTateHill’s query is a good example. ericsmithrocks.com/blog/2021/7/26… #askPSLA
J.D. Hathaway @jd_hathaway@PSLiterary @agentvicente @ericsmithrocks In general, does having a creative writing degree or other credentials influence whether a writer is chosen to be represented or published? #askPSLA
Nope! It’s all about the story. Most of the authors I work with didn’t major in writing.
I only look at credentials in nonfiction, because you’re supposed to be an expert. Past publications really help in that space. #askPSLA
Raen is socially distant @raenEdaze@PSLiterary @ericsmithrocks @claire_m_harris Are there geographical limitations to agent/writer relationships? Is it easier to have a agent who works in your country or are there no literary borders in 2020?#askPSLA
No borders! I’m in Philly! Shout out to my clients in Canada and the UK! #askPSLA
Though I do wish I could do the celebratory dinner thing when books sell. I know a great Wendy’s.
CathEEEEEKKK! 🎃💀🕸 says VOTE @cathydipierroCan you demystify the agent-editor relationship a bit? When you are deciding whether to offer, are you already thinking about which editors to sub to? Or do you research each project individually to find potential matches? How often do u sell projects to the same ed? #askPSLA
Steffi is a PitchWars Hopeful @clumsiesteffiShould writers send a nudge after not hearing back? My research has come up with “Yes! Do the thing!” and “No! If you don’t hear back it’s a no! Don’t be unprofessional!” So it’s a bit of a range there...
You can always nudge.
37% of an agent’s job is sending followup emails to editors. We nudge all the time. “Just circling back!” You can too! #askPSLA
Cara Stout @CaraFoshizzleAny trends that are selling better in the current state of affairs? Or ones that aren’t? (I’m assuming pandemic and plagues are a tough sale) #askPSLA
I feel like the tricky thing with trends, is that by the time one is happening and you see the books in the store, they are maybe over?
I know a lot of editor friends who want horror and middle grade. #askPSLA
So lately My WIPs have been..not fitting one particular genre or genre blend. If I ever get to the point of being ready to query them, how do I when so many agents have a wishlist that’s specific?
Look at me having anxiety over my @NaNoWriMo project before it’s started
My advice for odd genre blending books is usually “send it to me.” 😂
But also, look at agents who work on books that straddle categories. Look at your favorite recent books that do it. Lots of us like our out of the box books. #askPSLA
Steffi is a PitchWars Hopeful @clumsiesteffiAt what point would you reconsider a manuscript you passed on?
What catches your attention?
Anytime. If you rewrite it half a year later, send it my way.
It happened with @TheAdamSass, we talked about it here. I love that book terribly. ❤️ #askPSLA ericsmithrocks.com/blog/2020/9/9/…
Allison Carvalho @AllisonCwrites#askPSLA @msmariavicente
With all the pitch contests going on, I'm curious:
1. Do you have a fave you like to 👀?
2. In your opinion, how long is too long after a ❤️/like to submit your package?
3. How do you feel about mood boards posted w/ pitches?
I think @beth_phelan is doing such astonishing work with @DVpit_ and I’m not sure we deserve her.
In my experience most agents won’t mind if you follow up later, but you should really only be doing those pitch events if you’re ready with that book. #askPSLA
boilingonepiecetakes @warmtakrs#askPSLA If you want to write graphic novels should you find your artist first or can you query with just the written script.
You can pitch with a script! My colleague @msmariavicente has a bundle of resources about this on her website too. #askPSLA
Kunoichi | ∞ #BLM @Infinitii_FGC@PSLiterary @ericsmithrocks @claire_m_harris Hello Eric and Claire!
What is your ideal target word count for a thriller YA novel? #askPSLA
For me, the sweet spot in the YA thriller space is 70k to 90k.
If you’re worried about word count, use other thrillers to inform your work.
@MikalebRoehrig’s are favs of mine and right in that space, I think! #askPSLA
Carly Vair @cnvairOkay, this one has been killing me lately: Is pitching a novella a waste of time? Is there a market for them? It seems like a new one comes out every week (especially SF/F), but all the advice I've seen basically amounts to "don't bother pitching a novella." #askPSLA
My advice in the novella space is always to pitch agents who have worked on the novellas you’ve been picking up. Particularly in that SFF space.
Not a lot of folks work on them, but some certainly do. #askPSLA
Ashley McAnelly @ashewriterHonestly, how do you balance write time/agent time with parent life because I need that secret now. #askPSLA
My son is trying to eat my mail right now so perhaps I’m not the best person to answer this. #askPSLA
But really, industry friends trying to juggle it all? Group messages with my colleagues going through the same helps. ❤️
Eilene Spear @EileneSpearSorry if I’m asking too many questions, but I’d appreciate your thoughts on prologues in general? Any red flags? #askPSLA
No apologies, we are here for it!
I like a good prologue. The only time I can’t stand them is when it’s a character looking back. “Now I’ll tell you my story.”
Well, they turned out okay, so... why read the book? Try not to let your prologue ruin your stakes. #askPSLA