Monday 10 September 2012

HOW I GOT MY AGENT, by Sheri Larsen (+ Giveaway)

This week is a very special week. We have celebrations going on all over the place, so today, Wednesday and Friday, will be taken over by some amazing blogging buddies who have news to share, and lots of goodness to spread! Today we have the amazingly talented, and generous, Sheri Larsen.

So, my awesomesaucesome friend Jessica has offered to help me celebrate a fantastic milestone in my writing career. For those of you who don't know me, I write young adult, middle grade, and picture books. My freelance and short story work can be found in anthologies, magazines, and numerous local publications.

This summer brought me some exciting news. I signed with a literary agent—the fabulous Paula Munier of Talcott Notch Literary. And yes, I'm still hearing pompom cheers when I close my eyes. But within my original announcement HERE, I mentioned that there was more to the story. I hadn't traditionally queried Paula. So Jess has asked me to share how I ended up signing with my agent.

To be fair, I can't go into specifics yet--names, titles, and such. Here's what I can share with you. A year and a half ago, I wrote the first draft of my YA paranormal fantasy MARKED BEAUTY. Not happy with it, I decided to rewrite the entire manuscript, converting from 3rd person past tense to 1st person present tense. Risky? Maybe. But it felt right.

After receiving some amazing insight on my first 50 pages from YA author Michelle Zink, I decided to edit yet again, rewriting the entire beginning. I sent out a small round of queries, which vetted me requests but no takers. I combed through the manuscript another umpteen times and sent out an even smaller number of queries, only twelve. Again, many requests but no takers. I began to consider Indie publishing, even chatted with other Indie authors. That route just didn’t feel right for me at that time. So, this past June, I decided to take my publishing journey into my own hands and began submitting the manuscript to smaller publishers.

And VOILA! I got a hit. And then another. And then another. For now, let's just leave it at I received multiple offers to publish the manuscript with a few already asking for a sequel. Yup. I was totally freaking!! Of course I contacted some of my closest writer friends like AE Rought, Jessie Harrell, JA Souders, LM Preston, and Ciara Knight, asking for advice. Collectively, said ladies felt that querying a few agents and letting them know about my offers wouldn’t hurt.

I received a response within an hour of sending my query letter to Paula. Two days later we spoke by phone. She offered me representation, and I accepted.

So today, I'm inviting you to celebrate with me!! Our amazing writing community has offered up over 40 prizes for you to win from signed books to critiques, to personal chats. Seriously. Won't you celebrate with me and enter? I'd love it if you would. There's only one mandatory entry. Everything else is up to you!!

I know Rafflecopters can sometimes be a pain, but it was the only way to organize such a huge giveaway. Thanks you so much for reading and to Jessica, who is my writing sister across the sea.

List of Rocking Participants: Lenny Lee, Colene Murphy, LM Preston, Darby Karchut, Joanne Brothwell, Patti Larsen, Christine Fonseca, Catherine Stine, Jessica Bell, Kelly Hashway, Leigh Moore, Christine Danek, Alex Cavanaugh, Katie Mills, Matthew MacNish, Beverly McClure, Marcy Hatch, Jennifer Million, Nicole Zoltack,Christina Lee, Kris Yankee, JL Spelbring, Sharon Mayhew, Candice Granger, Dianne Salerni, Lisa & Laura Roecker, Elana Johnson, Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi, Susan Kaye Quinn, Lydia Kang, Julie Musil, Natalie Agurrie, Talli Roland, Medeia Sharif, Kelly Polark, Angela Brown, Sarah Fine, Stina Lindenblatt, Lynda Young, Susan Fields, PK Hrezo, Shannon O'Donnell, Shelli Johannes-Wells, Theresa Brown Milstein.

Links to Rafflecopters:
Giveaway #1: a Rafflecopter giveaway 
Giveaway #2: a Rafflecopter giveaway 
Grand Giveaway: a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Such an inspiring road to publication Sheri. So excited for you!

  2. I didn't know this part of the story, but it's nice to know there isn't only one path!

  3. Gosh, reading this brings back so many feelings.

    To your followers who are writers: just keep writing. There were so many times I wanted to toss in the towel, but I didn't. You shouldn't either.

    Thank you, Jess! You are one of the brightest lights in our blogosphere.

  4. You upped the stakes and made your manuscript appear priceless with all of those publisher requests!

  5. So great! I'm so excited for Sheri! Yay!

  6. Congratulations, Sheri. You are an inspiration to us all! If you get time, pop over to my blog. I'm looking for writers of speculative fiction to appear in a weekly guest post, and I would love for you to take part.

    Thanks for hosting Sheri, Jessica!

  7. Awesome, thanks for sharing your story! Small publishers seem like an exciting option to explore.


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