Word of the day: cognoscente - a person with special knowledge of a subject; a connoisseur.
What makes one an expert in their field? Sure, I can claim that I am an expert at snark and sarcasm, but where are my credentials? There's no degree on my wall from Harvard that says "Highest Honors in Making Fun of Stuff," although that would be pretty sweet. However, there are some people out there who do actually know what the deuce they're talking about, and luckily many of them have refused time with their loved ones to share such knowledge as they have gathered in this world with us. The blogosphere. Since I like books, and publishing, and the publishing of books, I thought I would share some links to blogs that I find particularly helpful. I'll link to agents today and include other blogs later on, including some wonderfully entertaining editorial blogs (leave it to the book nerds to snark about fonts in submissions).
I like the agent blogs because the info comes straight from the horses mouth. The editorial blogs are fun and usually lighthearted, and while they do have good info they're coming from a much more literary perspective and sometimes seem to lack the business aspect of it. Coming from a background in publishing myself I am all about the business, and I want to know what sells. If you are looking to make your living as a writer, perhaps your 150,000 word dissection of the state of modern man is best left under your bed in favor of the CIA thriller with the curmudgeonly but lovable protagonist. These agent blogs will help you balance the creative with the realistic, and since getting an agent is the first step in the process of publishing, these blogs are a good place to start. These are the top three I make sure to read every day.
Nathan Bransford - This guy is definitely le cool. He gives helpful feedback to reader comments, posts frequently, and has some really interesting looking clients. I especially want to pick up a copy of The Secret Year, I loves me the YA. Boo for not coming out until 2010.
Rachelle Gardner - She specializes in Christian books, especially Christian fiction, but her blog posts are good for a wide range of authors. I find her blog especially uplifting for unpublished authors; she's very encouraging.
Janet Reid - She is also the mastermind behind Query Shark, a blog that I adore and wish was updated more often because it has such specific feedback on writing query letters. I definitely plan to feed myself to the shark as soon as the current version of my book is done.
If you know of any other essential agent blogs, please send them my way! I'll make updated posts as necessary.