Nathan Bransford, Author

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Open Questions

I also apologize that I haven't been as good about responding to questions in the comments and via e-mail lately. The queries! They don't stop! I don't know if it's residual NaNoWriMo, a result of coming off the holidays.... I don't know.

Anyway. There's nothing worse than hearing someone complain about how busy they are (and yes, I hear your collective violins)... so let's get onto the questions!

Please feel free to ask questions in the comments thread and I will respond with a blog post answering them later in the day. At this time I'll be limiting it to 10 questions, sorry.


Scott said...

Is there room to play with genres if you're querying in one and want to write while you wait. In other words, will an agent expect you to stick close to what you've submitted? I stay fairly dark, but play in horror, sci-fi and a mixture of semi-literary commercial fare. Also, am I able to start a book of short stories, or is that putting the car before the horse.

Cheers, Nathan.

Anonymous said...

Do you recommend writing groups, and if so, is there a website devoted to listing them?

Nathan Bransford said...

Whoops, sorry second Scott, I thought it was first Scott posting another question and wanted to limit to one question per person. Second Scott asked what genres are hot, which I'll address.

MC said...

When is the new Amazon Kindle coming out?!

Anonymous said...


I know you only accept email queries, but I'm over here, freezing in Arizona, for a change, and wondering if snail mail queries hold more weight for other agents than the email. It's probably a frequently asked question but I'm really curious about your opinion.

Jill Christine said...

I'm currently shopping a YA paranormal; while I haven't been offered representation yet, some of the comments I've received make me think I'm getting close. Meanwhile, a friend with publishing experience in the erotica genre read some of my more adult work and thinks I should give erotic romance a try. If I use a pen name and place something with an erotica e-publisher, am I hurting my chances of publishing my YA? I've read up on the possible perils of working in different genres at the same time, including your take on the matter in your FAQ, but I'm specifically concerned about having a more adult publishing credit come back and bite me when I'm writing for younger readers.

Thanks, Nathan!

Anonymous said...
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Karen C said...

How do you feel about pen names?
Have your authors run into any problems using them that you could warn us about?

SeattleWriterGal said...

Do you think more agents will be following Firebrand's idea of offering "query holidays", where writers submit first pages instead of a query letter?

Marilyn Peake said...


This past Friday, you mentioned in the comments section of your blog: "And, of course, it means I'm always on the lookout for the next great self-published book." What about small press books for which the publishing contracts have expired, or the publishing house has gone out of business?

Many small press books have impressive resumes: review quote from famous author, hundreds of copies sold, major book awards, placement in libraries, etc.; but absolutely no distribution in bookstores. I’ve seen many such books moved from one small publishing house to another, and have always wondered if the author ever tried to contact a literary agent before submitting to another small press.

Nathan Bransford said...


A good question, but one I'm afraid I'm not comfortable answering.

Melissa said...

Since Scott pretty much asked the question I was going to ask, here's another: If and when a writer does get signed by an agent, are there any newbie mistakes you see newly signed writers making on a regular basis in regards to agents and editors?

Maybe if we know about them, we can prevent them from happening in the first place! Knowing is half the battle and all that.

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