I got the call! (I’m sure you heard my screams from wherever you stood on the earth!) Michelle Hauck at Storm Literary Agency offered to represent me as my literary agent. She made an exciting announcement on Twitter/X.

Many people have asked when my book will come out, but getting an agent doesn’t guarantee publishing. I thought I’d add to my last blog about the publishing process with the next stage! But obviously, I’m learning as I go from here on out.

I queried Michelle with a Young Adult story, and she sent back a message saying, “I’m intrigued…can you send me the full manuscript.” (This alone was reason to celebrate!) I sent the rest of the story within hours of her email and anxiously waited for her response. (I’ve never gotten past this step in the process in the past. I’ve gotten full manuscript requests multiple times – but never any takers!)

Michelle loved it! To have someone enjoy what you’ve written means everything. Her passion for the project overflowed in her accolades. I found myself pushing away the self-doubt that had been a constant undertone. I could actually say…maybe I do have skills? 

After reviewing some of my other work, Michelle wanted to have a CALL! It’s the moment I’d been waiting for. The call typically means (but not always) that an agent wants to offer a contract to help get your stories into the world. The call was a Zoom session that allowed Michelle and I to chat, ask questions, and see if we might be a good fit. 

Summary of call: I couldn’t be happier with Michelle! 

I feel so lucky and fortunate to have found her. We have a lot in common and I loved her passion for my manuscript. She said words like “couldn’t put it down” and “it’s the whole package.” Wow

Prior to the call, I’d Googled what information I should ask Michelle on a call. We discussed how she communicates with clients, her method for publisher submissions, and many little details. She offered me a contract, I signed, and here we are!

Next step was to run to Scott County Park and have my daughters take a new author photo that represents the laugh lines and grey hair of the current ME. Photo shoot went well – the wrinkles are represented. (I claim my laugh lines with pride!)

NOW – I’ve reached a new stage of the game. Michelle opens the possibility to publish my work in a way I couldn’t before. The majority of publishers will not accept queries of manuscripts from authors and can only be accessed through an agent. 

The “Big Five” publishers include Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster, Harper Collins, Macmillan, and Hachette Livre. Each of these publishing houses have multiple imprints of different publishing formats and types of books they publish. In addition to the Big Five, there are many independent publishing houses and digital publishers. There are thousands of publishers out there – but most cannot be approached without an agent. 

Our first priority – more revisions! Michelle is an editorial agent who has published her own work and has editing and pitching experience. She will review the manuscript again and suggest edits and revisions. Then I dive back in!

When the book is ready, Michelle will send the book out on submission to potential publishers. It’s her turn to query my manuscript and spark a publisher’s interest. Then…we wait. 

In an ideal world, a publisher is interested and wants to read more. It’s also possible that NO publisher will want the story and it goes nowhere. Rejection is a way of life in this business! Then, we consider more revisions or submitting a different project. 

Publishing is also a very slow process. For example, if a publisher was interested in my book today, it would not be published before 2026! There’s so much about the process that I don’t understand myself, and I expect hurdles, disappointment, and bumps along the way. 

Getting an agent doesn’t automatically mean my book will be published…but it’s a step closer. And I’m confident that with Michelle by my side, we’ll get it done!

I hope to keep my blog updated through this process to give a peek into this crazy world. I’m so thankful that Michelle fell in love with my story and decided to take a chance on a new author. 

Watch what we can do together!

In the meantime, I keep working. A new story is rattling around in my head and slowly unfolding. I continue revisions of other projects, and I’m excited to attend the SCBWI Marvelous Midwest Conference in the Quad Cities this weekend!

Stay tuned for updates. Thanks for visiting Pat’s Chat! Please provide your email for updates as soon as a new post is made!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This