Barb here. Okay, that title probably lays out the point of this blog post pretty clearly, but this is a complex topic.
Of late, I’ve heard some rather “loud” voices in the industry telling new/hopeful writers that not only do they not need an agent to be successful, but that an agent will actually be damaging to their careers.
In one online discussion, I recently (stupidly) jumped in to say, “Well, of course if someone is self-publishing, he or she doesn’t need an agent, but if a novelist wants to be traditionally published, an agent is necessary. How can a writer get a manuscript on the desk of a New York editor without an agent?”
I was instantly—and quite vehemently—told that I was “wrong,” and that no writer requires an agent to get a manuscript on the desk of a New York editor… and that unagented writers sell novels to New York editors all the time.
I bowed out of this discussion quickly, but I did worry that a lot of new/hopeful writers were listening to what I considered very poor advice.
J.C. and I rarely put up posts of a personal nature. We tend to be private people. And yet, it's been quite a year for us both personally and professionally.
About 24 hours to the release of TO KILL A KETTLE WITCH, available in ebook and massmarket paperback. The fourth episode in The Mist-Torn Witches series by Barb Hendee. Set in the same world as (but separate in story/characters from) The Noble Dead Saga and the coming first book of The Dead Seekers (Jan. 2017).