As a writer, I have spent a lot of time trying to sell myself to agents. As of yet, I have been unsuccessful. But through my search, I have definitely discovered what I want in an agent and what I do not want. I am not presuming that I am amazing enough for an agent to seek me out, but in a perfect world the agent that loves me would be….
1) Genuine- The agent would actually care about me and my work and not just the dollar signs. When doing my research, I found many agents who, through one form or another, made it clear that they only care about money. I want someone who loves the work.
2) Honest- I need someone who is going to be honest about my work and help me get better. I do not pretend to know everything. I want to learn and grow as a writer. I am hoping to find someone who is willing to help me in my work and hopefully my career. However, being honest does not mean being cruel.
3) Crazy- Yes I mean crazy because you have to be slightly crazy to write and to sell one’s writing. Crazy for me is a synonym for imaginative. They have to be fun and quirky. That is exactly what my writing is. If they aren’t crazy or imaginative, they are just not going to get it.
4) Knowledgeable- I do not know the business well and I am willing to admit that. I am counting on them to navigate for me and help me with the business side of publishing. They have to know what they are doing and be successful at it.
5) Relatable- I need to feel a connection to them or again they won’t get my writing. I am quirky and I have been around children for a long time, which is why I write for them. It is vitally important that they can relate to my love of children and children’s literature. They have to understand my deep love and passion for both my writing and teaching.
6) Enthusiastic- Most importantly, I want someone who believes in me and loves my work. I want someone who can connect with my characters and understand them. I need an agent who can sell my work and appreciate my art.
Is any of this too much to ask?