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  • Writer's pictureSydney J. Shields

My First Month As An Agented Author

Updated: Oct 12, 2022

HOW has it already been a month??!?!?!?!?!

I signed with my literary agent exactly one month ago today, and I'm here to tell you about it. When I was querying, I saw countless posts about how to survive the query trenches, how to perfect your opening pages, what to do on the call with an offering agent, but from what I've seen, the advice tends to stop there. I understand why—everyone's post-signing experience is different. Everyone has a different timeline. There's not a lot of universal advice for this situation, but I still think it's important to share what life is like once you FINALLY have representation!

On our initial call, my agent and I thoroughly discussed her editorial vision for my book, so I was able to dive into edits fairly quickly. I typed up a brief overview of some changes I wanted to make and sent them to her for review. We got on the phone the next day to talk through them and figure out where we could add some more depth to the story. I took a few days to chew on some ideas. Then, I typed up an extremely detailed, scene-by-scene summary of the book that included the revisions I wanted to make. I sent that doc to my agent, she loved all of it, and revisions officially began!

I completed my first round of developmental revisions a few days ago, gave my agent a progress update and an ETA for delivery of the revised MS, and started line editing the manuscript to make it as tight as possible. During this time, my AMAZING friend @ReadWithNikki was reading the book and giving me some feedback as well. Her insight was fantastic and really helped me tighten up the ending of the book. On Friday, 3 weeks and 5 days after signing with my agent, I turned in my revised manuscript!!!!!

So, what now?

Well, now we wait. My agent is currently reading the revised MS, but since I got all of the changes pre-approved, I am feeling pretty confident that she will like my execution! A lot of my other agented friends have a different revision process—when they get their edit letter from their agent, they just go straight into the MS without running all the details of their solutions by their agent, and the revised MS is the first time their agent sees their new ideas. Maybe one day I'll be on that level, but I had too much anxiety to dive straight in without knowing my agent liked what I was planning to do.

I anticipate at least one more round of revisions. As I finished this last round, I actually had a new idea that got me really excited, but it would be a pretty significant change. I repeated my process—I typed up a detailed scene-by-scene summary of the chapters I wanted to change with all of my revision ideas, and I sent that to my agent along with my revised MS. I love the story as it is, but I think this new idea would fit perfectly...and possibly open the potential for a sequel... :)

I have a feeling I will be reentering the revision cave fairly soon. Luckily, the other changes I proposed would only impact a subplot of the book, so I think I could get it all done in a week.

In the meantime, I'm trying to recharge! I'm watching new movies, listening to new music, and chipping away at my ever-growing TBR. I'm currently reading:

- 1 book that I can't name because it isn't announced yet

- Priestdaddy by Patricia Lockwood

Listening to:

- Legendborn by Tracy Deonn

- Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

Please keep your fingers crossed that my agent is happy with my revisions and that any further feedback is manageable and exciting! As always, I will keep y'all updated here and on my social media.


- syd

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