DFW Con: See you this weekend!

Dallas Fort Worth Writers: I’m coming your way!

This weekend I’ll be at the following conference events:

Ask An Agent Session 2

Dawn Frederick, Michelle Johnson, Lana Popovic, Christopher Rhodes, Carly Watters
1:00 to 1:45 p.m.  Sunday

There are a lot of opinions out there about to how to become a traditionally published author. Everyone’s got plenty of free advice to offer. How to make sense of it all? If only someone would fly a bunch of literary agents across the country right here to the DFW Metroplex and gather them together into a room so I could ask them any question I want and get the answers straight from the people who know the market best. Nah, nothing that cool ever happens around here…

How To Sell Your Picture Book

Carly Watters, P.S. Literary Agency
3:45 to 4:45 p.m. Saturday

Writing for young kids has changed: morals and lessons are out and delightful, page-turning, kid-driven books are in. This workshop will teach you the dos and don’ts of selling your picture book in today’s market. 

Today’s Non-Fiction Markets

Dawn Frederick, Harry Hall, Ben Hedin, Me Ra Koh, April Osborn, Carly Watters
1:00 to 2:00 p.m. Saturday

Many writers are so focused on the goal of breaking into fiction that they overlook a huge market with an astonishing variety of opportunities and in many cases, less competition. Here’s a look at ways to make your mark in the world of non-fiction. 

Also, sign up for my pitch sessions and talk to me about your exciting work!

Webinar: HOW TO GET AN AGENT May 14th, Writer’s Digest

Picture 1I’m back at Writer’s Digest doing another great webinar. This time: HOW TO GET AN AGENT. Sign up here for the May 14 (1pm EST) session. 

Many writers think getting a literary agent is the hardest thing they’ll have to do as a writer. They think agents are looking to turn away writers, when actually many agents are actively looking to sign new talent. How do you find these agents that have open doors?

Literary Agent Carly Watters works with many debut writers she’s signed from the slush pile who have become successful multi-published authors. She’ll share the industry expectations of debut writers, how to find agents that are actively looking for new writers, and what questions to ask to make sure you find the right agent for you.

Learn what agents are being told by the industry and how that shapes the debut projects they sign, why you need an agent, and where to find agents that represent what you write. Do you want know how to hook an agent? Carly will make sure you’re fishing in the right pond.


  • What an author/agent relationship looks like
  • How to find an agent that’s right for you
  • How to show agents you’re a ‘career author’
  • How to stand out among other querying writers
  • What the state of the industry looks like for new authors
  • How agents approach the slush pile and writers conferences
  • The important steps to writing a successful query letter
  • Why you must query an agent with what they ask for


  • Live access to the webinar to ask questions, OR if you’re working, still sign up because either way you get the webinar emailed to you and you get your critique.
  • A critique of your query! From me!
  • 1 Hour of Instruction
  • 1/2 Hour of Q & A


  • Writers who are crafting their first book
  • Writers who have completed their first book
  • Published writers who do not have an agent yet
  • Writers who want to learn more about the author/agent relationship looks like
  • Writers who want to learn an agent’s role in the industry

Sign up today!

If you’re waiting for something to happen in publishing…

timeIf you’re waiting on beta readers…

Throw yourself into critiquing others; attend a writer’s conference, webinar, or workshop; outline your next book; set up your author website.

If you’re waiting for an agent…

Start working on (or finishing) your next book; avoid reading too much into agents’ social media posts; tidy up your author blog or website or revamp for a new look; decide on a blog or social media schedule that you can keep up with.

If you’re waiting for an editor…

Strategize with your agent about next steps; ask your agent questions so you’re up to speed when you talk with editors; avoid reading too much into editors’ social media posts; keep social media contact with editors to zero or a bare minimum; polish up your next project.

If you’re waiting for your book to come out…

Plan your personal publicity and marketing roll out; schedule a call or visit with your publisher’s promotional team; talk to writer friends about what’s worked for them–publicity, keeping your sanity or otherwise!; deliver your second book before your first comes out to keep the noise out of your head.

If you’re waiting for reviews…

Step away from the comments, I repeat, step away from the comments.

Q: What do you do when you have to wait in the publishing industry?

Celebrating my four year ‘Agent-versary’

I’m celebrating my four year ‘Agent-versary’ this fall! I feel so lucky to have a job (and clients!) I love so much. Who else can say they get to read and travel for a living?

Recently, I was in Avalon, NJ for a writers retreat where I got to spend time with Kathy Temean and her lovely group of writer friends and colleagues. This was our view…

What’s not to love about talking publishing at the ocean? I can smell that salty air again just looking at that picture.

Those days at the writers retreat, and long walks on the beach with an agent friend, gave me lots of time to think about my role in the industry. Working from home it’s always refreshing to be out and talking about the business in a new environment.

Agents can get a bad reputation for speaking from our high horses (“don’t send us this,” “don’t write like that”) but all of us truly know that our jobs wouldn’t be possible without writers. They have amazing, innovative, (sometimes wacky! and you know it!) ideas, but we’re so thankful for them putting their work out there every time.

I’m thankful for:

  • My clients who amaze and surprise me nearly every day! (All of you.)
  • My taste and selling some great debut novels this year! You know who you are. (Rebecca Phillips, Andrea Dunlop and Karen Katchur!)
  • Some of my client books earning out and having them get royalty checks. (Authors making a living, much to celebrate there.)
  • Taryn Fagerness, our foreign rights agent, who is doing great work for my writers in translation. Especially for Taylor Jenkins Reid who is in a whopping 10 territories now!
  • My team at P.S. Literary Agency. They rock.

Cheers to my four year Agent-versary and all the hard working writers out there! Cheers to my clients for keeping me a happy agent. Cheers to so many more years to come.