Miss Snark Reviews the Facts of Life

Oh grand Snark One, forgive me I'm being rather nitwitish, but I am in need of your powerful wisdom. I have been recently shopping around for an agent; however, I must face the fact that I have never published anything, and that is seriously hindering my hunt. I would like to know if you have any advice on what types of work would be my best choice for actually getting published and that will please prospective agents. And at the same time, what kind of publications would make these agents snigger and pass me off like a peice of manky Snarkbait?

Thank you.
By the way, you're going to get me into trouble at work. While I should be working, I keep sneaking back to your blog to read more. Thanks for the great reads. I heart Killer Yapp!

There is no Holy Grail for getting an agent's attention. It's not a matter of writing a particular type of work, or being published in a particular magazine. If it were that simple, it would not be called Publishing, it would be called "Filling Out Forms at the DMV". While Miss Snark certainly learned her interpersonal skills at the DMV, she does not work there and you don't either.

Suck it up fella. It's a matter of writing well. There's no secret. There's only hard work, frustration, learning and relearning. Reading this blog will not make you a better writer. WRITING will make you a better writer.


Mad Scientist Matt said...

Some other things to add:

1. There are some "publication credits" that agents do scoff at, but that's only from groups that are notorious for not being selective. The most obvious example is pay-to-publish things like iUniverse - anybody can pay them to have them make books, regardless of the quality of the writing. And there are some more subtly non-selective groups like PublishAmerica and the International Library of Poetry. Being accepted by either one of these is not a publishing credit -and acting like it is can lower an agent's opinion of you.

2. Most things that pay for your writing are legitimate publishing credits.

3. The type of work that's most likely to get you published is the type you're best at writing.

Miss Audrey said...

Miss Snark,

I beg to differ that reading will not make me a better writer.

After taking who knows how long to read the Holiday Crap-O-Meter entries, your comments, and the comments of others, I sat down and rewrit my synopsis.

I believe that it is 100% improved and I look forward to shopping it around. I also fine-tuned my first five pages. Now only to clean up the first three chapters that just weren't quite there yet.

I greatly appreciate all of the help and feedback I was able to glean from the whole experience. Now my synopsis is clean and concise. It is also no longer 'an outline.'

Thus I rest my case. Reading has in fact made me a better writer. It just depends on the quality of the read. Kudos to the blog of all blogs! Kudos to you.

Welcome AgentC. I look forward to learning more!

Kagura Shinra said...

Thanks for the help Miss Snark. Actually, your answer makes me feel so much better than I had been feeling. Now, I know that I just have to keep doing what I've beend doing (writing, editing, writing, writing, writing, editing).

Anonymous said...

i hope miss audrey is joking around with her grammar when she says she 'rewrit' her synopsis.