Finding a literary agent to champion your book is one way to get traditionally published. But what’s the best way to attract an agent’s attention? Booking an #Agent121 is the perfect chance to get advice on perfecting your covering letter, synopsis and opening chapters before you begin querying agents.
We developed the first online service of its kind back in 2019 to allow you to do just this – meet an agent in an online room for professional feedback! An Agent one-to-one is the perfect opportunity to get your submission package shipshape which will hopefully lead you towards your dream of getting published.
An #Agent121 is a 15 minute online appointment with a literary agent, editor or publisher. These meetings are invaluable if you are querying, the industry word for sending your book off to an agent to see if they want to take you on as a client. During the #Agent121 you will receive feedback on your cover letter, synopsis and opening chapters.
A writer who books an Agent One-to-One often falls into one of two categories:
* those with a completed manuscript (your book) ready to start or already pursuing the querying process (the term used for sending out your manuscript directly to agents).
* those who are part way through writing their book and want to get some advice in the early stages of their journey.
Either way, the industry advice may be life-changing. Agents know the market, what’s selling and what isn’t, and can offer invaluable advice about which direction your book / characters / plot needs to take.
Take a look at the professionals on offer to see who matches your chosen genre. We also recommend you researching the agent and the agency they work for to check if this agent is a good match for your book.
Once you have decided which agent is the best fit for you, click on their picture above, choose the best time and then follow the payment steps. You will receive an automatic confirmation email containing further information.
Since 2019, we have facilitated hundreds of #Agent121 appointments with writers all around the world. We invite every single writer (and agent!) to run a quick internet check with us to minimise the chance of any technical glitches during your appointment and keep the process running smoothly for you both. This is one of the loveliest parts of our job, as we get to meet you and answer any questions you may have.
If you are on low income or from an under-represented background, you can apply for a free session with an agent. Please email us at email@example.com with a brief outline of what it is you are writing, why it is you are applying for a free space, and which agents appeal to you. Subject to availability, if you qualify for a free session, we will make the best match we can.
The details of what to submit can be found on the booking page along with the submission deadline. Usually it is a covering letter, or a cover letter as we often refer to it, a 1-2 page synopsis (no synopsis for picture books) and the first three chapters, but check the agent page to be sure as some requests vary. Address your cover letter as if you were writing to the agent directly and take the time to demonstrate you have researched them in some way, including spelling their name correctly! Please also include your telephone number on your letter in case we need to contact you on the day when the ses.sions are live. Then please email your submission to Elane and Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org in a single word document. Please send your submission in on time – the deadline for each submission is set 2 weeks before your meeting.
Absolutely! Please feel free to book as many as you wish. In fact, writers that meet more than one agent improve their manuscript each time with suggested revisions.
We are happy to offer you a full refund if you need to cancel providing it is at least 14 days in advance of your #Agent121 date.
* Your 15 minute appointment will whizz by very quickly so have a think beforehand about questions you would specifically like answering ie is your cover letter strong, does your synopsis make sense, do the characters need more work, are there any plot holes the agent can foresee, that kind of thing.
* Allow the agent to talk as much as possible – they have a lot of information to impart in a very short time.
* Arrive on time!
* The industry is very subjective and an agent’s advice will come from their own point of view. If what they are telling you to write or consider is different from advice you have received in the past, or is against how you might want to convey the story, then perhaps this book just isn’t for them, so trust your gut instinct and continue to write. Bear in mind, though, that the agent will know the current market very well, and will know how best to pitch your book to a publisher. If you receive similar advice from several agents, there will be a good reason for this!
Great news! If an agent has requested a full manuscript from you, then you have caught their attention. This doesn’t mean representation is on the cards yet though – they need to fall in love with your whole novel / picture book not just the opening pages / one or two books. Note any revisions they have suggested during your meeting and ask them where you should submit it directly once you have made them.
Some agents receive up to 100 submissions each week on top of the correspondence with their existing clients and meetings with publishers. If an agent invites you to send in your full manuscript it is therefore not unusual for them to take around 12 weeks to respond. If you don’t hear anything within this timeframe, you can send them a polite email to check in.
Plenty of agents use social media and many love to be tagged and thanked for a positive experience you might have had with them. Check you have the correct handle for them, and remember to hashtag your post with #agent121. This use of communication is also a great way to share with members of the writing community how you’re getting on.
In the unlikely event that you experience an unsatisfactory experience with an agent you can, of course, let us know, but please note that as I AM In Print is not part of your #Agent121 we take no responsibility for the advice given.