It looks like I’ll be having a very full Wednesday when we’re in New York City for the Edgar Awards. The MWA is holding a symposium during the day at the Lighthouse in New York City on W 59th Street. The schedule for this year has not yet been finalized, but last year’s symposium included presentations on the publishing industry and a writer’s life, as well as talks by both Lisa Scottoline and Sara Paretsky.
That evening, at the same venue, the MWA will be hosting a party for editors and agents. That should be a great time to meet agents who may be interested in representing me. These days, for traditional publishing, you need to have an agent. There use to be a time when publishers would accept manuscripts directly from authors, but with the changes in the publishing industry, the agents have taken over some of the work that editors use to do, including the slush pile (the stack of unsolicited manuscripts that use to come into the publishing houses). Most agents choose to represent a writer based on personal contact. That is why writers’ conferences have become very important – agents will attend them and usually schedule time to hear pitches from authors about their books.