This Site is Secure

Ask a literary agent your question about how to get a publishing agent here. You’ll also find answers to questions other authors have posted. This article is part of our free 15-Part Guide About How to Get a Book Agent. It was created by, and is curated by, a former literary agent who’s now helped hundreds of authors get book agents as an author coach and consultant. See successful authors at How I Got My Literary Agent.

Book agent in brown suit on the Ask a Literary page of Get a Literary Agent

ASK A Literary Agent – FAQ

This Ask a Literary Agent FAQ answers questions about: the definition and role of a book agent, who publishing agents are, when you should query literary agents, how much representation costs, the best way to find book agents looking for authors, submissions to literary agents, how to handle an offer for representation, what happens after you get a book agent, and more.

Group of publishing agents inviting authors to ask a literary agent a question
ASK A LITERARY AGENT
ASK A BOOK AGENT
ASK A PUBLISHING AGENT
ASK A LITERARY AGENT
ASK A PUBLISHING AGENT
ASK A LITERARY AGENT
ASK A BOOK AGENT
ASK A PUBLISHING AGENT
ASK A LITERARY AGENT
This ask a literary agent page was written by former literary agent turned author coach Mark Malatesta, creator of The Directory of Literary Agents, host of Ask a Literary Agent, and founder of Literary Agent Undercover and The Bestselling Author.

Mark has helped hundreds of authors get offers from literary agents and/or traditional publishers. Writers of all Book Genres have used our Literary Agent Advice coaching/consulting to get Top Literary Agents at the Best Literary Agencies on our List of Book Agents.

Submit Your Question

Ask a Literary Agent

If you have a question about how to get a literary agent that isn’t answered on our website, please post it below. Before posting, scroll above to make sure your question isn’t answered there.

Due to time constraints, we can’t answer questions that have already been answered. Please make your question clear, and concise, since the submission form below is limited to 500 characters.

If you want to remain anonymous, type “Anonymous” in the name field. You’ll receive an email when a reply has been posted (usually within 48 hours). We look forward to helping you get a book agent.

1,274 Comments

  1. Barbara L Prisco

    Always great to hear from you, Mark. Just want to let you know that Splendid Gift will officially launch on Sept. 19th
    and should be available on Amazon and at bookstores by
    July or August. My official print copy looks wonderful and I
    love the comment on the copyright page: “With Indigo River
    Publishing, you can always expect great books, strong
    voices, meaningful messages and most importantly, you’ll always find…words worth reading”. So glad they chose mine!

    Reply
    • Literary Agent News

      Hi Barbara,

      My pleasure, and I love it…please be sure to post again when it’s on Amazon!

      https://getaliteraryagent.com/ask-a-literary-agent/.

      🙂

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      https://markmalatesta.com
      The Bestselling Author
      https://thebestsellingauthor.com
      Literary Agent Undercover
      https://literary-agents.com

  2. Coryanne Hicks

    What are your thoughts on American authors querying foreign literary agents, eg in the UK or Canada? Good idea or bad idea? (What if the agent is one of the top agents in his/her country currently?)

    Reply
    • Literary Agent News

      Hi Coryanne,

      No issue with that, just try U.S. literary agents first if you haven’t done that.

      Then, go for it.

      And here are some other things you’ll find helpful, if you haven’t seen or used them yet:

      How to Get a Literary Agent (NEW 15-Part Guide)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/how-to-get-a-literary-agent/

      Literary Agent Database (Directory of Literary Agents)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/literary-agent-database/

      Literary Agent Advice (1-on-1 Coaching/Consulting)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/literary-agent-advice/

      If you want/need help with anything else, you can post here at https://getaliteraryagent.com/ask-a-literary-agent/.

      I’ll do what I can to point you in the right direction.

      All my best,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      https://markmalatesta.com
      The Bestselling Author
      https://thebestsellingauthor.com
      Literary Agent Undercover
      https://literary-agents.com

  3. RICHARD ROLLYSON

    Hello my name is Richard Rollyson and I have a series of 26 children’s books about the alphabet and how each letter is important to the English language, it also includes vowels and introduces them to numbers as well , dorrance publishing has accepted 1 book so far and they require payments to keep publishing …I’m a father of two and I’m on a strict budget so it’s been hard to pay them monthly I need someone to help me publish and I was told to look into a literary agent…I already have my covers drawn and illustrations they are 20 page books each one …I’m stuck in the needing money to publish please help thank you for you’re time

    Reply
    • Literary Agent News

      Hi Richard,

      See here: https://getaliteraryagent.com/getting-a-literary-agent-after-self-publishing/.

      And here are some other things you’ll find helpful, if you haven’t seen or used them yet:

      How to Get a Literary Agent (NEW 15-Part Guide)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/how-to-get-a-literary-agent/

      Literary Agent Database (Directory of Literary Agents)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/literary-agent-database/

      If you want/need help with anything else, you can post here at https://getaliteraryagent.com/ask-a-literary-agent/.

      I’ll do what I can to point you in the right direction.

      All my best,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      https://markmalatesta.com
      The Bestselling Author
      https://thebestsellingauthor.com
      Literary Agent Undercover
      https://literary-agents.com

  4. Sherry

    I know you won’t post this, but why is your firm advertising its services if agents are so hard to retain? In the literary world, not commercial or genre, who have you helped? How? Why aren’t top literary agents who’ve represented NBA, Pulitzer winners phishing for clients? I’ve never been contacted by a legit agency.

    Reply
    • Literary Agent News

      Hi Sherry,

      Literary agents are very hard to retain, which is all the more reason it’s good to make sure you educate yourself about the process to increase your odds as much as possible.

      Here are some things that will help, no cost:

      How to Get a Literary Agent (NEW 15-Part Guide)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/how-to-get-a-literary-agent/

      Literary Agent Database (Directory of Literary Agents)
      https://getaliteraryagent.com/literary-agent-database/

      Also…

      Since you asked, you can see more about some of the authors we’ve helped here:

      https://getaliteraryagent.com/how-i-got-my-literary-agent/

      And…

      If you want/need help with anything else, you can post here at https://getaliteraryagent.com/ask-a-literary-agent/.

      I’ll do what I can to point you in the right direction.

      All my best,

      – Mark

      Mark Malatesta
      https://markmalatesta.com
      The Bestselling Author
      https://thebestsellingauthor.com
      Literary Agent Undercover
      https://literary-agents.com

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

See more results...

Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors
Get free instant access to the official Directory of Literary Agents, and our article/audio training library. Click here to see all that’s included in our Getting a Literary Agent resource center.

How I Got My Book Agent

Successful Authors

Photo of author NJ sharing a Mark Malatesta review at Get a Literary Agent

Thanks in part to your query letter, manuscript suggestions, and support prioritizing agents, I received multiple offers from agents. Within two weeks of sending out the first query, I knew who I was going to sign with. I value our friendship.

N E L S O N . J O H N S O N

NY Times bestselling author of Boardwalk Empire, produced by Martin Scorsese for HBO, and Darrow's Nightmare: The Forgotten Story of America's Most Famous Trial Lawyer

NJ Book Cover for BE on boardwalk with cast from the HBO TV series, posted by Get a Literary Agent

Photo of author LL sharing a Mark Malatesta review at Get a Literary Agent

After following your advice, my book was acquired, the prestigious PW gave it a great review, and Time Magazine asked for an excerpt. Thank you for believing in my book, and for helping me share the surprising truth about women’s most popular body part!

L E S L I E . L E H R

Author of A Boob's Life: How America's Obsession Shaped Me―and You, published by Pegasus Books, distributed by Simon & Schuster and now in development for a TV series by Salma Hayek for HBO Max

LL Book Cover posted by Get a Literary Agent Guide

Photo of author SL sharing a Mark Malatesta review at Get a Literary Agent

Fine Print Lit got publishers bidding against each other [for my book]. I ended up signing a contract with Thomas Nelson (an imprint of Harper Collins) for what I’ve been told by several people is a very large advance. What cloud is higher than 9?

S C O T T . L E R E T T E

Author of The Unbreakable Boy (Thomas Nelson/Harper Collins), adapted to feature film with Lionsgate starring Zachary Levi, Amy Acker, and Patricia Heaton

SL Book Cover for TUB with photo of boy on beach with jester hat at sunset, posted by Get a Literary Agent Guide

Photo of author MLP sharing a Mark Malatesta review at Get a Literary Agent

AHHH! OMG, it happened! You helped me get three offers for representation from top literary agents! A short time later I signed a publishing contract. After that, my agent sold my next book. I’m in heaven!

M I R I . L E S H E M . P E L L Y

Author/illustrator of Penny and the Plain Piece of Paper (Penguin Books/Philomel), Scribble & Author (Kane Miller), and other children’s picture books

MLP book cover of S and A with paintbrush drawing cute animated figured, posted by Get a Literary Agent Guide

Book agent in brown suit on the Ask a Literary page of Get a Literary Agent

Find answers to all your book agent questions. Search our Ask a Literary Agent FAQ and/or post your question(s).

Photo of Mark Malatesta - Former Literary Agent MARK MALATESTA is a former literary agent turned author coach. Mark now helps authors of all genres (fiction, nonfiction, and children's books) get top literary agents, publishers, and book deals through his company Literary Agent Undercover and The Bestselling Author. Mark's authors have gotten six-figure book deals, been on the NYT bestseller list, and published with houses such as Random House, Scholastic, and Thomas Nelson. Click here to learn more about Mark Malatesta and see Mark Malatesta Reviews.
error:
Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

News and updates to get a literary agent, publisher, and book deal.

You've successfully subscribed!