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How to Find a Book Agent

Do you want to become a published author? Most people will tell you that the first step after writing your manuscript is getting a book agent. But how do you find one?

A New York City or London book agent receives around 2,000 submissions annually. Among those applicants, they’ll select 2 to 3 writers…if that. So, your odds of finding a book agent can be 1 in 1,000. So, here’s where we suggest you begin.

Tips for Finding a Book Agent

1. Focus on your book. If your book is among the top 20 to 30 (of thousands) in your genre, you’ll more than likely find the right agent and get a book deal. However, you must put in the work to get your book to that point. Make sure you edit your manuscript and hone your craft.

2. Polish your query letter. This is your opportunity to tempt a book agent into reading your work or requesting more of it to read. If your query letter isn’t intriguing, they’ll easily pass before they’ve even glimpsed your material.

3. Refine your list of ideal book agents. You shouldn’t just send your book to one or two agents. You’ll need to send your query letter to dozens. Of course, you’ll face rejection repeatedly, but those who get book deals are the ones who try again and again, regardless.

Consider Self-Publishing

If you’ve tried and tried to find a book agent — or you simply don’t have any interest in playing the 1 in 1,000 game — consider self-publishing as an alternative. This is a stellar option for people who want to become published authors without using a book agent and traditional publisher.

Not only are you guaranteed to publish your book with self-publishing — i.e., you don’t have to wait for anyone else to “choose” your book — you’ll also have a much higher royalty rate. You’ll get to keep anywhere from 50 to 70 percent of the profits compared to 10 to 12 percent with traditional publishing.

To learn more about self-publishing, visit

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