I'm researching agents. Yay me. Actually, this isn't a difficult task, just time consuming. Inspired by my crit partner Lisa Tiffin, I set out to list 30 agents for my first round of queries. So how did I come up with this list?
1. Agents who have said nice things about my writing. Or just something. :) I save my submission logs from previous novels. If an agent requested a full or complimented my pages, I'm querying them again.
But wait. It's not that simple. Some of those agents are very busy with clients now and are no longer taking queries. Others have changed agencies. So I looked up each agent. If he/she is no longer taking queries, he/she may have a fellow agent at the same agency who is looking for my genre. So I googled each agent and each agency. That formed the basis of my list.
2. Agents of happy friends. Of course. For example, at MiGWriters, we recently ran a series of interviews with the agents of MiGWriters. Naturally, I'll be querying the agents in our blog interviews who are accepting queries.
3. Agents I researched through Literary Rambles's Agent Spotlight. Casey McCormick gathers all the online information she can find about agents accepting queries so you can decide if they're a good fit for your writing. I still looked up each agency's website, though. Even agents here who sounded great sometimes had fellow agents more open to speculative YA.
4. Verla Kay's Blueboards. Check out the Agent Response Time boards and then research the agency's website.
It's safe to say that I didn't choose any agent without seeing their agency website. That's how to find the best agent to query, get the guidelines, and find the email addresses. I added email addresses and submission guidelines to my Excel spreadsheet for submissions for this novel. Save those spreadsheets for the future!
-- Kate, Miss Perfecting the Pages