You don’t pick an agent. They pick you.
Their job is to discover and nurture new writing talent, so they’re looking for what you can offer them.
Agents work for literary agencies large and small or operate as sole traders. Each agent can deal with a limited number of clients at any one time and may take on only a handful of new ones a year. So they can afford to be choosy.
Some don’t accept manuscripts unless they’ve been referred by, for example, an existing client. This means that the very best way to find an agent is to have a chum who’s already got one, who can introduce you. This is what happened to me. The result was my first book, Love Child.
I was lucky. Otherwise, research and determination can get you there. Continue reading