“It ain’t over ’til it’s over”

Aspiring writers have heard how long it can take to get representation (if at all) and how long it can take to get an offer on their book from a publisher (if at all). But still, so many writers ask how long it will take for them. Agents are vague about this not because we are trying to keep cards close to our chest, but because it simply varies between each project, and that’s the truth. I’ve had a project sell in three weeks and a project sell in thirteen months. So there is no definitive answer. I know it doesn’t help you in planning and with expectations, but you must have patience, trust in your agent and your work and read the signs that you are being given.

That being said there are projects that will never sell. That is merely the business we’re in. However, it ain’t over ’til it’s over. Perseverance is not a word passed around to make you feel better, it’s touted because it is the nature of the craft you’ve chosen. Perseverance you can control, other aspects of the business you cannot. So work with what you have: your writing and your attitude towards it. It’s not over until you decide to give up. Read the signs. Know what to expect. And work at your craft everyday.

Published by Carly Watters

Carly Watters is a SVP, senior literary agent and director of literary branding with the P.S. Literary Agency. She is a hands-on agent that develops proposals and manuscripts with attention to detail and the relevant markets. PSLA’s mission is to manage authors’ literary brands for their entire career. Never without a book on hand she reads across categories which is reflected in the genres she represents and is actively seeking new authors in including women’s fiction, commercial and upmarket fiction, select literary fiction, platform-driven non fiction and select memoir. She occasionally represents children's book projects. Carly is drawn to emotional, well-paced narratives, with a great voice and characters that readers can get invested in.

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