Pub Rants

A Very Nice Literary Agent Indulges in Polite Rants About Queries, Writers, and the Publishing Industry

Fridays With Agent Kristin: Episode 1 – How To Become A Literary Agent

STATUS: Through snow and more snow, the show must go on!

What’s playing on the XM or iPod right now? I FALL TO PIECES by Patsy Cline

Without further ado, I’m delighted to debut in 2012 a series of video blog rants called Fridays With Agent Kristin. And I hope you cut me some slack with this first one because let me tell you, this was hard to do.

Let me take that back. It was really easy to do a crappy video clip. To do a decent one took me an hour and 15 or 20 takes to nail a clip that was even remotely worth taking on to the editing stage.

I have a WHOLE new appreciation for anyone in the broadcasting arts. Seriously! You have to concentrate on pacing, breathing, every word, every pause, and oddly enough, every blink of the eyes.

If you blink normally during a video clip, you’ll look very strange in the finished product. Good thing I didn’t know what I was getting into when I started. If I did, it would have never left the idea stage.

So, welcome to Episode 1: How to Become A Literary Agent.

And if you’d like to suggest some topics for me to tackle in future episodes, that’s what the comment section is for. *grin*

30 Responses

  1. laylafiske said:

    I totally enjoyed the video.

    It gives a real human connection to the wisdom I’ve been reading for years now. Thanks for doing this. I’ll look forward to future subjects.

    BTW… beautiful eyes, great blinking skills. (grin)

  2. Jon Sealy said:

    Don’t let the 20 takes get you down. A friend of mine was recently an extra in a movie, and he said they spent 12 hours working on about 4 minutes of movie footage.

  3. Gaston Ndanyuzwe said:

    I enjoyed your Friday funnies, but I’ve got the feeling I’ll like this even more.

    Great first video!

    Now, about topics; I’m sure you’ve already thought of this yourself, but why not go over some of your posts with this new angle? You’ve thrown out some incredible information at us, and I’m sure expanding it on video would make a lot of happy folks.

    It certainly would, as far as I’m concerned.

  4. Ric 'The Turtle' Ryan said:

    Really liked the video and tried to catch the edit breaks and couldn’t. Half ways in I got fixated on two things though. What is the deal with the white teddy bear and are you a little OCD, or was it done for the video. Your office looks very organized though. Seems everywhere I read lately in writing circles I come across your agency which is good. Hopefully someday I will finish something to send in. Ditto on the nice weekend.

  5. Helen said:

    Awesome video, and so useful too! A great topic, and so nice to feel as though you want to connect with your audience. Have a great weekend!

  6. Elissa M said:

    Great information and nicely done video. I have some idea how hard it was to make… I was an extra in a “major motion picture” once. NEVER again. I hope your experience making this video wasn’t so horrible that you’ve changed your mind about doing a series of them. It sounds like a terrific idea.

  7. Sam Dark said:

    You know, I did always wonder how one went about becoming a literary agent — now I know! Thanks.

    As for helpful topics, here’s one idea: “trends” you’ve seen that week [whether in queries, manuscripts, etc]. Meaning, errors that seem to be popping up a lot. It would be helpful to have a list to keep in mind while editing manuscripts/queries!

  8. Anonymous said:

    Topic wise, how about one on all the ways writers freak themselves out for no good reason? How to stay calm in the crazy world of publishing.

    Not that I’m freaking out or anything. No, not me. Never.

  9. Julianna Helms said:

    Oh! And Ric “the Turtle” Ryan: I didn’t notice the teddy bear the first time around, but now I see it. I, personally, think it’s fantastically cute. 🙂

  10. ryan field said:

    This is a great feature for the blog!!

    I’d love to see an episode that gets into the normal everyday things, like a tour of the office and building, etc… I enjoy those human interest aspects/details.

  11. Trading Coach said:

    It’s funny but the first time I watched the video I wasn’t really listening to what was being said. I was rather watching on the blinking and the background. Plus,I love the hair.

    I had to watch it the second time to get the message. 🙂

  12. M.E. Anders said:

    I really enjoyed your first video post, Kristin! We readers love seeing the real live person for the blogs we follow. I know it’s a LOT of work to get a good video clip edited and produced.

  13. Jacqui Pirl said:

    This was great! Your blog is like a daily shot of caffeine to the ego for this struggling writer. I tell everyone interested in writing that if they want to know the truth about writing/publishing/agenting they need to read your blog from beginning to end. Thanks!

  14. Patrick McNamara said:

    I would think a business background, especially sales, would help a literary agent since it’s about selling a product. And when it comes to business education, diplomas are just as good as degrees. Although a decent familiarity with contract law would also be important, so I can see why those with legal backgrounds would be suitable.

    But it also seems to do a great deal with personality and the contacts one has. So while one could study subjects that might help them to be an agent, one couldn’t really study to be an agent.

  15. Terry said:

    Love the video blog idea, and yes, you’re right about all of us [writers] having to embrace new technology every step of the way. It can be mind boggling but I try to just take bits and pieces and filter out what is way over my head and what I can identify with and possibly use in the future. It’s my own personal filter system. Future topics? Would love to hear your further thoughts on anything that you already cover in your website and/or monthly newsletters. Everyone on your staff has a distinct voice and I learn something each month from every read. In fact, it’s why I haven’t yet submitted my manuscript because “I’m not yet ready for prime time” as so many of you keep telling us. [yes, we are listening to your tips!] Thanks from all of us for encouraging us to be better writers.

  16. Terry said:

    Love the video format and here’s an idea for a future topic. I don’t want to be a literary agent, but I sure would like to know how to meet some!

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