POINT OF VIEW: Here We Go

So things are a ‘changin for me.

I have finally completed the two trilogies I’ve been working on for the last two years (well, four years for Oberon) and I am looking ahead to what’s next.

I have decided to take my shot at the bigtime.

I have discussed this with my current publishers – the wonderful folks at both Mischief Corner Books and Dreamspinner Publications – and I am going to try to get an agent for my next book. My ultimate goal is to break into one of the big publishing houses to see where it might take me.

This has been a long time coming. I got my start in gay romance, but my heart has always been in sci fi and fantasy. I’ve been thrilled with the critical response to The Oberon Cycle” and “Liminal Sky,” but I know that I’m in a tiny corner, genre-wise, with queer sci fi and queer fantasy. Not that I plan to abandon diversity – it’s one of my biggest strengths – but romance will not play as big a role in most of my work going forward.

I want to stress that both MCB and DSP have been wonderful to me, and I am leaving all of my current works with both of these great publishers. But I turned fifty-one this year, and I feel like if I don’t try this now, I never will.

I attended a local meeting of The California Writer’s Club on Saturday, and had the opportunity to pitch my work to two agents. It wasn’t a “real” pitch in the sense that they were just there to let us practice and get some feedback on our technique and substance. But it was a concrete first step for me, and an opportunity to meet a couple real live literary agents face-to-face.

I was also nervous as hell – did I mention the pitches were done in front of a live audience of about 45 writers?

I re-wrote my pitch three times while waiting for my turn, incorporating advice from both agents as the meeting went on (did you know “steampunk” isn’t much of a thing atm? and they really wanted word counts, genres, and comparable books up front).

But when my turn came, it went well, and both agents both seemed generally intrigued by “The Long Redemption.”

So now what?

Now I have to actually finish the book and make it the best story it can be. Once I get there, I’ll choose an agent and send off the manuscript. Then we’ll see where it leads.

I am nervous about all of this – we’ve all heard stories about agents and big publishers – but I am excited about it too. It feels like this is what I’ve been working toward my whole life, and who knows?

Someone has to get the golden ticket, and I firmly believe you make your own luck. If I fail, at least I know I tried. So wish me luck and buckle up. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Well, that’s enough trite clichés for one paragraph, I think. *grin*

*fingers crossed* And here we go!

To my writer friends – Do you have an agent? If not, have you ever tried to get one?

2 thoughts on “POINT OF VIEW: Here We Go”

  1. Wishing you every success, Scott!

    Finding an agent who will work with you and who you can work with is a complex process.

    At GRL in 2013 I pitched to an agent who showed interest in my work. We had a lively email exchange after the con, until she asked what my sales were. When I told her, all communication stopped cold turkey. Not a single reply. I interpreted that to mean she was interested in authors who would make her money right out of the gate without much effort on her part.

    In contrast, a different agent has helped me develop Garden Witch into a much finer book than I could have on my own without asking about my sales once. He believes in my story and in my writing.

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