I have a great start to my novel. I'm wondering, though what the next step is. Should I be looking for an agent now? Should I skip the agent and send it right to a publishing house? How do I know who to send it to at a big publishing house?
Any other tips or info is much appreciated :)
Me, DS, and DD Grateful to the baby I lost for sticking around long enough to teach me what I needed to know so badly We love our forest valley home, our goats and chickens, and wild harvested food-medicine
the next step is finishing the first draft. then you put it away for at least a couple weeks, and then you begin the revision process, which will probably take longer than writing the first draft. then you give it to a couple of discerning readers (ie, not your mom) and really listen to their feedback. then you do more revisions. then you do another round of revisions.
THEN you start to think about agents. and yeah, you want an agent, unless you want to self-publish or go with a very small, independent press. almost none of the major publishing houses take submissions without an agent. so you do a ton of agent research, reading blogs to find agents who represent what you've written. then you go about crafting a perfect query letter (which is, in itself a task that requires a whole lot of revisions).
you might want to hang around the message boards at absolutewrite.com to get some more feel for the process and do some agent research. or, the book The Forest for the Trees by Betsy Lerner is a great book about the publishing business.
JoyMC sait it all.
No reputalbe agent will look at an unfinished MS (unless it is non-fiction, and then the rules are different and you need a very detailed proposal plus several finished chapters). And if you hear from an agent who tells your otherwise, check his or her reputation on agent beware forums.
No reputable agent will ask you for money.
Good luck with you novel!
There's an informative discussion on a WAHM thread about self-publishing that you may find interesting:
Edit: Found a similar article to the one I was looking for : http://blog.mediaideas.net/2011/03/04/the-rise-of-the-99-cent-kindle-e-book/