Chuck Sambuchino’s Guide to Literary Agents Blog

Chuck Sambuchino is an editor and published author who runs the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, one of the biggest blogs in publishing. His site has instruction and information on literary agents, literary agencies, query letters, submissions, publishing, author platform, book marketing, and more.


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How I Got My Agent: Erin Knightley

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, with this installment featuring Erin Knightley, author of A TASTE FOR SCANDAL. These columns are great ways for you to learn how to find a literary agent. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others...

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2013 Writer’s Digest Conference: Some Pictures

The 2013 Writer's Digest Conference in NYC was this past weekend, April 5-7, 2013, and everything was a blast. The sessions were well received, the attendees were nice, the big pitch slam was smooth, and everyone seemed to have a good time. Here are some pictures from the event to check out. I assume we...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Susan Stockdale

1. Write down every book idea you have as soon as you have it. Otherwise, you’ll forget what might have resulted in your (first) Caldecott, Newbery, or National Book Award. Keep a pencil and paper nearby - in your purse, your briefcase, your car. Transfer your ideas to a “book idea” folder in your...

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5 Tips to Help You Make Your Deadline

1. Do the math. Before you undertake the final throes of a deadline, you should map out how much time you have and how much writing you have to do. It's a terrible SAT math question: if a novelist only has so much time to write x-amount of words, how long before it feels...

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4 Ways to Build Healthy Relationships with Your Readers

I wrote Anne Rice an email. She wrote me back fifteen minutes later. I couldn’t believe it. Here I was, a stranger, and she immediately wrote me a kind, friendly note. Having a positive relationship with your readers pays off. Readers are more likely to buy your book if they feel a personal connection...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by You Byun

3. Please yourself as a reader. I have the highest standard and expectation as a reader, like you do. When I walk into a bookstore, I want to be surprised to find a new picture book that will astonish me. I want to fall in love. I want to feel jealous because I didn’t...

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Agent Advice: Kristina Holmes of The Holmes Agency

This installment features Kristina Holmes of The Holmes Agency. She began her literary career at Ebeling & Associates, and after six years left to start her own venture. Fueled by a passion to bring meaningful books to the world, on January 2012, her agency was born. From her home base in Boulder, Colorado, she`s...

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The 9 Ingredients of Character Development

1. Communication style: How does your character talk? Does she favor certain words or phrases that make her distinct and interesting? What about the sound of her voice? Much of our personality comes through our speech, so think about the way your character is going to talk. Her style of communication should be distinctive...

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7 Things I’ve Learned So Far, by Jeanne Ryan

1. Learning to write synopses well is a golden skill. You’re probably aware that if you can master these little guys, you’ll have a leg up on selling manuscripts on proposal, competing in writing contests and applying for grants. But did you know they can also play a big role in selling subsidiary rights?...

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Agents Barbara Poelle and Holly Root Cover It All With Their “How to Write a Successful Novel: The Craft, Techniques, and Strategies” Webinar on March 28

If you don't know who Barbara Poelle and Holly Root are, I'll tell you. They are both awesome literary agents who both sell a lot of books and also are extremely good at teaching writers how to improve their work. Basically, they're super-cool and super-smart. And now, somehow, the planets have aligned and they...

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Picture Books Are Not Just for Children: 10 Reasons Why

2. Picture book language is often more sophisticated than the first chapter books that children read, and therefore an excellent way for children to learn language. It is here that children, and others, can learn vocabulary, imagery, rhythm, shape, structure, conciseness, emotional power. 3. The picture book is the most flexible of all literary formats....