Here are the steps I will take over the next several months to publish my fiction book…
- I plan to submit query letters to literary agents in the next weeks. Unfortunately, a book lives or dies based on the 300-word query letter an author crafts to entice agents to be interested in his/her book.
- Most agents will reject the query – some will respond and some will not respond at all.
- Somewhere out there is an agent who will take a chance and ask for a read or a partial read. The most common requests are for the first ten pages, the first three chapters, or the entire book.
- After reading the book, an agent can either extend an offer to represent me, decline me with suggestions for improvements, or just decline me altogether.
- If an agent wants to represent me, then I sign a contract with them if I think they are a good fit. Typically, a contract means that they get 15% of my profit and that they will work to find a publisher. Agents don’t get paid anything unless I get published and paid.
- The agent submits my book to publishers, hoping to find one who will agree to publish the book.
This whole process can take a VERY LONG time. Some authors go through 100 agent queries before they find an agent. Then, there is not guarantee that the agent will find a publisher. Finally, it can take months or over a year between when a publisher agrees to publish a book and when it actually goes for sale.