Why do you need or want a literary agent? We exist largely to provide services to authors and or filmmakers. Today most every film by an up and coming screenwriter is based on a book that has already sold well and shown a significant track record. A literary agent can help you connect with the houses that will position your book and get you published. Literary agents provide services, which include connecting the author’s work with appropriate publishers, contract negotiation, ensuring payment of royalties, and acting as a mediator if there are problems between the author and the publisher. You do not have to do the months of footwork to get in the door and in the end, pay the agent a percentage of what they negotiate for you while you are free to write your next bestseller. You can be a creator of your own work and allow the agent to do the legwork and heavy lifting in a very mercurial industry.
With the help of a literary agent, especially young authors are able to get known by the public. Agents also assist publishing houses and others in expediting the process of review, publication, and distribution of authors’ works. Many well-known, powerful, and lucrative publishing houses are generally less open than smaller publishers to un-agented submissions. A knowledgeable agent knows the market and can be a source of valuable career advice and guidance.
Being a publishable author doesn’t automatically make someone an expert on modern publishing contracts and practices, especially where television, film or foreign rights are involved. Many authors prefer to have an agent handle such matters. This prevents the author’s working relationship with his or her editor from becoming strained by disputes about royalty statements or late checks. Another frequent function of the agent is often that of counselor, advising an author on various aspects of how to make writing a paying proposition on a timely basis. Literary agents are often very experienced members of the publishing industry who usually transition from years of working in the industry before moving on to being agents. Though self-publishing is becoming much more popular, literary agents still fulfill the role of acting as the gatekeepers to the publishing world.
My work as an agent not only bridges the publishing world to the author, but I act as a reader who can help to edit and create an even more polished product before it ever crosses the desk of the publishing house. You get one chance and the submission needs to dazzle the publisher but also prove that your book is highly marketable. The alliance I have with my authors is multidimensional and very intimate, making my ability to represent you as an author, highly informed, my knowledge of the story deeply personal and my instinct for representation rooted in a personal relationship with all the authors I represent.