Dear Miss Snark,
I have been following your blog for a while now, though I haven't dared to comment on any blog entry -- I am a dim nitwit, after all.
From a writer's perspective, an agent like you is a god-like figure who is the writer's most assured path toward Nirvana AKA the book shelf. However, what I would like to know is, how did you get here? How did you become an agent? What does it take to become an agent? Do you go to law school because you need to read those contracts? Do you have a degree in English? What makes you a professional agent and me a dumb nitwit? Same for book editors -- how do those mysterious figures end up where they are? What did they do to land them such a ------ rewarding profession?
I understand you can't give detailed information as it might reveal your identity - but what generally does it take to enter the publishing world as an agent or editor, not as a writer?
I ask this because I admire what you do, your interest in books, and well, perhaps some day - god forbid - you will pass on your stilettos to a used-to-be nitwit.
You go to the crossroads and meet a guy named Nick.
He's usually listening to Robert Johnson on his ipod and reading Goethe.
The way you get into publishing is the same way you get into almost any industry. You apply for a job. To see what kinds of jobs are out there subscribe to Publishers Lunch or Media Bistro.
You have to arrange to meet Nick on your own. I hear he reads Craigslist, particularly the Missed Connections part.