Added: Lateshia Flippo - Date: 05.11.2021 14:54 - Views: 19445 - Clicks: 6026
Practically every writer I know has a day job. Mine just happens to be as a literary agent. I love my career, which keeps me close to my Need a sexy literary assistant passions: words and books. You would think that knowledge acquired in my job would help me get my own work published. You would be wrong. As I got closer to twenty-five with a college degree and an MFA but no book, I decided to become a literary agent. It was, I thought, the closest thing to being a writer while still getting a regular paycheck no, I did not realize that most agents work on commission!
So I sold all my stuff and moved to New York City to work as the assistant to a group of literary agents, and quickly saw my nights and weekends taken up with reading for my bosses and eventually my own clients—oh, and freelancing, because publishing salaries are next to nothing! When people asked if I was working on my own book, I offered vague excuses. It hurt not to have time to write, but I loved being an agent even more than I had imagined. Now, more than ten years after I started, I still love it.
I get to read for a living. I get to see new books before anyone else. Working with writers every day inspires me as a writer: Their hard work makes me want to work harder. Their persistence and success keep me buoyed when I doubt my own work. But I still want to be a writer, too, and sometimes I feel so far behind. I am ignoring every piece of advice I have ever given an aspiring writer. As it is my job to assist and support writers, I thought it might be helpful to provide a kind of reverse how-to guide—a how- not- to guide, if you will—so you can see that even literary agents make mistakes and so you can try to avoid mine.
I am not fucking writing enough. The first thing you need to get a book deal is a book, right?
I have two full manuscripts that are not saleable, as I explained in this anthologytwo other half-novels one YA, one adult that I actually like, two half-completed nonfiction book proposals, and two picture-book concepts rattling around my brain as I nurse my infant daughter. I am not special to have this many unfinished projects! Many writers have more. But how many hours a week do I actually write? Basically zero. Even an hour a week is better than nothing, or so I would tell my own clients. I need to prioritize writing and aim for completion, instead of letting the half-finished projects pile up.
I think about getting an agent before I have anything ready to share. Yes, even agents need agents. We both need the hand-holding, the objectivity, the distance from the process that every writer needs. I should not be worrying about whether I should get an established agent at a big agency, or an up-and-coming agent at a small agency.
Who I ought to approach is dependent on the book I write. I cannot write to agents and say, Hey, want to represent me and these unwritten ideas I might finish one day? Researching and finding the right agent is necessary, but not before finishing the book. I dream about Need a sexy literary assistant sweet, sweet advance money.
So why do I keep thinking about it? I talk more about my books than write them. Are you sensing a theme here? Editor friends, I am sorry. Let me run the s when I get back to the office! No one can bestow the magic of publishing on you, or on me.
The most effective way to get published is to write a good book.
I get hungry for reassurance. My fantastic writing group shoulders some of this burden, but day-to-day, I still look for positive feedback and ways to relieve anxiety. And sometimes that makes me avoid my computer, drag my feet, not write. I can help them focus on the work at hand, and leave the rest behind. But I am not doing this for myself.
I am looking for shortcuts. Because I feel so far behind, occasionally I find myself looking for a shortcut to help me catch up. I hear ideas like this every day just from following the market and talking to editors. Sometimes I think, Hey, I could do thatand then I start taking notes and avoiding my other personal writing projects.
Maybe I could write some of those quickie books. I need to let the fleeting ideas go, and work on the ones that mean something to me—just like I tell my clients all the time.
The easy ideas rarely turn out to be easy, and only serve to distract from the real work at hand. I secretly think a book deal will fix everything. What will it be like? I will still be Kate, just Kate with a book deal. I tell myself that publishing a book is what will make me a real writer.
Before the awards ceremony there was a day of workshops, and I took one with Colum McCann. It wasand his first book, Songdogshad come out the fall. That day, I felt like a real writer. That proved I was a real writer. A few weeks later, a teacher handed me a photocopy of a letter from Colum McCann, printed in that bubbly, default font of the early Mac.
Kate McKean is certainly the real thing—she understands the need for narrative, for subtlety, for image. And I could tell there was a good heart behind her work. I really hope she continues to write, to read, to push her own parameters. It was my first blurb. I was floored.
I memorized it. It was the first time a real writer had complimented my writing. I probably need to let that go now. No one can make you a real writer. Writers write. And my day job has the potential to help me with my side hustle, my dream, if I can just get out of my own way.Need a sexy literary assistant
email: [email protected] - phone:(864) 580-1282 x 8756
This jaw-dropping job advert is going viral on Twitter