Monday, October 18, 2010

in which I bare my soul (this is very serious)

In desperate need of a photographer. Looking through these albums, I'm discovering that 1) I'm not business casually dressed in any of them, and if I am, 2) there's non-business casual people/items/activities in the vicinity. Also, there's the fact that 3) I'm never looking at the camera and 4) never smiling. Much less 5) posed in front of a book case, which seems to be a very popular backdrop for literary agents.

A sample of what I have to work with:


Making out with my dog. Perfect--I want all my slush to be werewolf paranormal romances.













This is more promising. It shows authors I can be the champion for their work. Literally.

















Chilling with Edward on the cover of Entertainment Weekly. It features my excellent networking skills and strong connections in the film and vampire communities--very important qualities to keep in mind when looking for an agent.












Sigh. At this rate, I'll find a picture for the website in, oh, never.

And my bio isn't faring much better, either. This seems to be the general format of agent bios:
1) College degree, and any distinctions
2) Membership in agency organizations or writing groups
3) Popular clients
4) Tastes in books
5) Quirky personal fact

But since I'm not a member of anything and have no clients to boast of yet, that shortens things up quite a bit. Here's a rough rough draft of what I'm maybe thinking about perhaps possibly writing:

Judith graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University with a B.A. in English and History on a full presidential scholarship. Prior to joining LD in 2010, she interned at Random House, Objective Entertainment Multimedia Agency, Caren Johnson Literary Agency, FinePrint Literary, and Nancy Coffey Literary Management. She is drawn to witty prose and eccentric characters, and is interested in literary fiction, YA, urban fantasy, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance, thrillers, and crime fiction. When she's not reading, she enjoys causing mischief during her daily adventures with her Siberian Husky, Grendel.

SO LAME. I CAN'T STAND IT.
*crumple*
*toss*

Feel free to tear it/me apart.

Also, do you think I should mention somewhere in there that I was valedictorian of my high school? Or does that not matter? And is being a member of the Honors program and Phi Beta Kappa worth mentioning? I don't know I don't know!

Nervously yours,
jude

10 comments:

Shelley Watters October 19, 2010 at 1:30 AM  

Hi Jude!

I have to say that the pic with Grendel is my absolute favorite of you. Picking out a pic is so hard!

So as for your bio - here's my opinion. I wouldn't add anything about high school. While the honors & Phi Beta Kappa are impressive - I don't think prospective clients will be as interested in that as what you're looking for, how to stand out in your slush pile, or something that they can relate to.

Judith graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University with a B.A. in English and History on a full presidential scholarship. Prior to joining LD in 2010, she interned at Random House, as well as a number of literary agencies including FinePrint Literary, and Nancy Coffey Literary Management, where she cultivated a love of (something you discovered your love of here... Shark soup, books with titles including the word seduction, orange soda, cupcakes, etc. LOL). She is drawn to witty prose and eccentric characters, and is interested in literary fiction, YA, urban fantasy, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance, thrillers, and crime fiction. When she's not reading, she enjoys causing mischief during her daily adventures with her Siberian Husky, Grendel.

I actually think it reads well - I think the list of literary agencies is a bit overwhelming though.

Taking off on my own writing adventure, here's my version of your bio. I'm totally pulling it out of my *ahem*. LOL.

From an early age Judith was enamored with books. She knew that she had to have a job in publishing when she had to sleep on a pile of books because there was no more room in the book case.

Her decision to focus on literature led her to pursue a BA in English and History from Fordham University. After finishing college, she interned at Random House and at a number of wonderful literary agencies before joining LD in 2010. It was during her internship that she discovered that not only did she love reading books, but she wanted to have a hand in creating them by becoming a literary agent. As an intern, she pulled out of the slush and referred it to the agent, which listed on the best seller list. (Or put whatever highlight from your internship here that might be of interest)

She is currently building her client list and is interested in literary fiction, young adult, urban fantasy, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance (is paranormal romance or paranormal in general?), thrillers and crime fiction. She is drawn to witty prose, eccentric characters, and (anything else that draws you in?). When she's not reading, she enjoys causing mischief during her daily adventures with Grendel, her Siberian Husky. Her favorite non-client authors include (list). Grendel’s favorite non-client authors include (list). Grendel is not currently accepting submissions.


Did I mention that I'm thrilled you're going to rep YA AND romance? :)

Myrna Foster October 19, 2010 at 2:40 AM  

I think you should leave the agencies and anything else book related in and the high school honors out. And I love the picture of you with Grendel.

Are there any authors you can mention that you've worked with in any capacity? Or you could list some of your favorites. When I'm researching agents I'm most impressed by those who've worked with authors I like.

Kelly October 19, 2010 at 8:28 AM  

I agree with the suggestions above
I love your beautiful dress in picture number one and your beautiful dog!!

Pk Hrezo October 19, 2010 at 9:07 AM  

THese are great pics!!! Love your dog!I stumbled onto your blog from SHaron K. Mayhew's and glad I did.

Cheers!

Giles Hash October 19, 2010 at 9:48 AM  

First of all, COOLEST DOG EVER!!!

Second, I think the bio thing works...at least until you come up with something that's 100% you.

Third, there will be no tearing. :)

Kendel October 19, 2010 at 12:22 PM  

The picture with Grendel is perfect – I love the red ball gown. Your bio just needs a pop of personality and I think Shelley did a fine job on the remix. Definitely mention some of your favorite books. Writers like to see your individuality, helps us figure out if it’s a good fit.

Of course, if you go this way, you may need to re-think your new black soul, no giggling transformation…

Sharon K. Mayhew October 19, 2010 at 1:19 PM  

Judith graduated summa cum laude from Fordham University with a B.A. in English and History on a full presidential scholarship. (NICE!) Prior to joining LD in 2010, she interned at Random House, Objective Entertainment Multimedia Agency, Caren Johnson Literary Agency, FinePrint Literary, and Nancy Coffey Literary Management. (THIS SENTENCE SEEMS TO BE RATHER LONG AND DRY, PERHAPS YOU CAN WORK WITH IT AND MAKE IT MORE INTERESTING OR BREAK IT UP INTO MULITPLE SENTENCES.) She is drawn to witty prose and eccentric characters, and is interested in literary fiction, YA, urban fantasy, paranormal, contemporary and historical romance, thrillers, and crime fiction. (nice!)When she's not reading, she enjoys causing mischief during her daily adventures with her Siberian Husky, Grendel. (WHAT ABOUT INSERTING A LITTLE OF YOUR NINJA ATTITUDE IN THE LAST SENTENCE?)

Your photos are great! When you are a famous agent, you should totally use them on your bio!

I wouldn't mention that you were valedictorian of your high school. It's a great accomplishment, but I don't think potential clients would need that information. The fact that you had a full persidential scholarship shows that you are a smart cookie, which is what a potential client wants...

Remember your bio will change as you change...it is not set in stone. Look at some bios of agents you admire and use them as models.

Best wishes....

Candyland October 19, 2010 at 2:14 PM  

Oh man...just from a Candyland POV, I wouldn't even care about your fantastically professional bio-I'd want you to be my agent based on that ET cover alone. And repping YA? Um, hellz yeah.

Oh and if you think you might possibly want to be a part of my blog contest, holla atcha girl...

Shelley Watters October 19, 2010 at 2:37 PM  

I had a great (well great to me) idea for your picture after reading your comment! While staying in the parameters of matching the other agent's pictures! How about a picture like Ms. D's - something where you're sitting on a comfy couch reading, with Grendel's head in your lap next to the book? I think that would portray you as a serious agent yet approachable.

I love Stephanie Evan's picture on the Fine Print Lit's website - she's got a drink in one hand and her dog in her lap. I'd totally query her based on the picture alone (if she rep'd my genre)! LOL

Good luck! I can't wait to see your pretty face and amazing bio on the LD website!

Star-Dreamer March 7, 2011 at 11:30 AM  

Sounds good to me. :) Though I agree about the Highschool thing being left out. I might say that anything college and above would look good on a resume, but perhaps not so much for an agent bio... IDK.

As far as your tastes go, YA... slightly eccentric characters... wit... Now if only you didn't mind reading a piece with a slightly religious angle... *hint, hint... squiggly eyebrows* :D