What Is A Literary Agent?


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A literary agent is someone who represents an author's written work. There are many literary agents both here in the UK, in the United States and in the world ~ some more reputable than others.

A literary agent is supposed to have contacts within the publishing industry and today many mainstream publishers won't even look at a manuscript unless it has been forwarded to them by a literary agent. A good literary agent will specialise in a subject such as women's fiction or specialist non-fiction books. It's rare to find a literary agent who will take just anything on.

A literary agent works only on a commission basis, so they only make any money on the books that they present to a publisher and that publisher publishes them. You should never, ever, pay a literary agent any kind of fees. If a literary agent asks you for any money, stay well clear of them. If a literary agent secures a publishing deal for your book, he or she will take between 10 and 12% commission on the advance you might be paid and any future sales of the book.

Although a literary agent will make the whole publishing process easier for you, you do have to remember that when your book starts selling, the agent, the publisher, and the stores are going to take their percentage before you see any money.

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