Went to the 31st Annual Conference of the Romance Writers of America in the NYC Marriott just to get her signature for my sister’s copy of Abandon. I desperately wish that I also owned a copy of The Princess Diaries to have gotten signed for myself and I desperately wish that my friend and I had remembered a camera. The line waiting for her was so surprisingly short, considering how she’s a rock star and all, so we would have had plenty of time to ask for additional fan favors like that.
[deep sigh of disappointment]
To avoid sounding like a sputtering, brainless, teenage zombie fan I might have prepared what I was going to say. I said that I don’t know if she remembered me but I had emailed her earlier this year for advice for getting a literary agent. And she emailed back recommending Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, and Literary Agents. (A new edition comes out annually). AND she gave me her agent’s name.
So of course, I had to say thank you in my brief moment of interaction. Even though her agent rejected me in less than 24-hours (she read my whole book in that amount of time, so I felt pretty special, despite the rejection). And then Meg Cabot said something encouraging, as she is known to be. Apparently that same agent rejected he 3 times before finally accepting one of her manuscripts.
Lesson learned: contact your favorite authors and authors who have written books similar to your own. Ask for advice. Ask for their agent. It’s nice to name drop that one of the literary agent’s super successful clients recommended you get in touch with them. They might not always share the agent name because they want to keep it a secret and that’s fine. Every little tidbit of information helps!
Besides, if you respond, you can frame their response email on the wall.*
*No, I have not done that. They’re just framed in my mind and hung in places of honor over an imaginary fireplace I like to curl up next to when procrastinating from writing.