I’m very please to announce that Patty Carothers of Metamorphosis Literary Agency will be representing me as my literary agent.
In addition to any foreign and media rights on the Valducan series, she’ll be finding a home Ashes of Onyx, and I’m very excited to have her.
Ashes of Onyx has gone through several large revisions since I initially finished it. I’ve gotten some invaluable feedback from a writing group I joined as well as some industry people. With all that, I attended DFWcon Agent/Editor Conference this past June as a guest author, and while I was there, proceeded to pitch my latest novel to several of the attending agents. Patty was among the ones on my Pitch List, however our schedules never aligned, and I never had a chance to speak with her. Every time I saw her, she was either talking to a pack of authors or one of us was hurrying to a panel.
So once the conference was complete, I went ahead and sent her a query letter. Instead of the others I sent at that time, which all began with something like, “I really enjoyed speaking with at you at DWFcon,” followed by some detail we might have spoken about or shared to help jog their memory since they probably spoke to 200 authors over those 2 days, this one simply said, “I’m terribly sorry I never got a chance to speak with you.” Not the best intro, but better than nothing, I suppose.
Normally queries after a conference take a few weeks before an agent can reply. They get a surge of fresh queries all at once, in addition to the constant river their inbox normally receives. But I sent it, and then I waited.
For 8 hours.
Technically, it was 8 hours and 2 minutes. I’d expected 8 weeks. It was the second-fastest agent reply I’ve ever received (The reigning king was 1 hour and that was a rejection. But that’s a very different story). However, this one wasn’t a rejection. She requested the full manuscript and synopsis, which I quickly supplied.
And then I waited.
That’s pretty standard, especially for a manuscript request. Honestly, the most difficult thing about being an author is learning the patience of a mountain. After that, everything was pretty quick – long phone call, several emails, talks with some trusted peers about their opinions, and then the contract. And here we are.
While signing an agent doesn’t guarantee that the book sells, it’s a big step. I’ve had several friends who secured some big-name agents and never sold the book. But having an agent is necessary to open a lot of doors and helping secure the best deal once you’re through that door. It’s having someone in your corner that believes in you and can coach and guide you. I’m pretty damned happy.
Now, for those wondering what Ashes of Onyx is about, or just curious what my query letter said, here you go:
Kate Rossdale was once the most gifted sorceress to rise in Onyx Tower, Baltimore’s greatest coven. Then a murderous betrayal left her stripped of her magic, friendless, and on the downward spiral of drug addiction.
But all of that changes when she’s hired by a man she doesn’t trust. The payment: Restoration of her magical powers. The job: Murder. As enemies close from all sides, Kate races across the globe and across worlds, venturing into exotic realms of forbidden dreams as she hunts for Lost Carcosa and the magic-thief who robbed her of everything.
ASHES OF ONYX is a 118,000-word adult New Weird fantasy much in the vein of Clive Barker’s IMAGICA or Stephen King’s DARK TOWER. My publishing experience includes the four novel VALDUCAN series, as well as many short stories. My fourth novel, REDEMPTOR, was recently released as an Audible Original Production. I’m a two-time Audie Award finalist for Best Paranormal Audiobook (2015 and 2016), a SFWA member, and have an extremely active YouTube channel with over 22,000 subscribers.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
That’s it. Pretty simple.
Right now, the next step is a new round of revisions. Patty has some suggestions to help polish it up and fix any rough parts. Once that’s all done, we’ll begin the process of finding it a home. That part can take a while, but as I said before, authors learn the patience of a mountain.