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African-American Literary Agents/Agencies

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Guest Shirley G. Perry-Church

Hello Everyone,

Right now I am in the process of sending out queries for two of my manuscripts--The Peanut Butter Trap and Cracked Glass ... Out of all the hundreds of literary agents in the directory I have only come across two that are African-American owned. If anyone out there has access to a Literary directory with our people accepting manuscripts, please let me know. I truly believe that my work is exceptional, but thus far, I cannot find any agency to  represent my work in the white majority.

Thanks for your time in this matter.

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I wish you luck with the traditional route of publishing. I'm sure has a link somewhere on the site to the Black pack literary agents. If you get to frustrated submitting, go the self publishing route. Just make sure you have a hell of a plan when you start.

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Finding an agent is difficult.  Sure I share some resources on this website http://aalbc.com/writers/literary1.htm

You;ll also find links to some agents below

aalbc.com/writers/
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSCDR22U7ulxHhH5z5Tqrv
 
No matter what you're writing--fiction or nonfiction, books for kids or adults--you need aliterary agent to secure a book deal. The 2013 Guide to Literary Agents is  ...
 
aalbc.com/writers/literary1.htm
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSc10N8mPp2i_GA-Ca4HPw
 
No matter what you're writing--fiction or nonfiction, books for kids or adults--you need aliterary agent to secure a book dealagents, workshops and more.
 
aalbc.com/writers/connor.htm
 
The Connor Literary Agency is a full service agency dedicated to advising and guiding writers in every aspect of their literary career, as well as advising writers ...
 
aalbc.com/writers/serendipity.html
 
ABOUT SERENDIPITY LITERARY AGENCY. Located in Brooklyn, NY, near the heart of America's publishing industry, Serendipity Literary Agency, LLC. is a ...
 
edit1st.com/resources/guide-literary-agents/
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSim7jaihNbTA1ffAM7xy6
 
In their Tools for Writers you will find a well-organized list of agents, what they represent, and their submission guidelines. Also, the annual Guide to Literary ...
 
aalbc.com/authors/regina_brooks.html
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSK6fxR5BctmYp2UxIeeNY
 
Regina Brooks ia an Author & Founder Of Serendipity Literary Agency LLC. Here all of her published works are listed as well as articles and videos she has ...
 
aalbc.com/reviews/marie_brown.htm
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQvhjTo-AWO09NMZkHUoss
 
Marie Brown President of Marie Brown Associates, a literary agency. Ms. Brown is a part of the elite and small group of "black" literary agents. A 40-year veteran ...
 
aalbc.com/writers/lisadavis.htm
 
Lisa Davis Literary Agency represents fiction literary and commercial and many areas of nonfiction, including women's issues, popular culture, self-help, ...
 
aalbc.com/tc/index.php?/topic/277-video-literary-agent...the...
images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQjyjwUHfQFJtSDgFpu4h0
 
May 21, 2010 ... Manie Barron, Partner of the Menza Barron Agency, speaks about the roles and responsibilties of the literary agent and author at the National ...
 
aalbc.com/writers/faith.htm
 
Contact: Faith Childs Literary Agency, Inc. 915 Broadway, Suite 1009. New York, NY 10010. One Million Men and Me · Bottle Cap Boys Dancing On Royal Street ...

 

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Guest

Hello CDBurns and Troy,

Thanks so much for the info.

CDBurns, I have already gone the self publishing route with my first children's book, The Hunt for the Magic Pearl. It has not been a good experience for me, as they have my book priced entirely too high and I am unable to sell it successfully. I had to do it so that I could get my name out there and to be able to say that I am published. However, I don't want to do it again for subsequent work. I know that I should be able to get an agent, but OMG, it is like pulling teeth. I am tenacious though. I am not going to stop this time until someone recognizes my worth and contributions as an author. Self publishing will break the bank if you allow it. I am done with putting my hard earned money into their pockets.

To Troy, thanks for the list of agents. I have already queried Serendipity.  Ms. Brooks has asked me to send my book's proposal. I am praying that this is a good sign. I have also sent a letter to Ms. Marie Brown at Marie Brown Associates requesting to send a query to her. Again, I am praying for a response from her agency.  You have provided me with others that I am going to investigate. I love that I found this website. Thanks for the role you play in providing us with a platform. This is wonderful :).

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Hi Guest (Shirley), I would recommned that you check out this video I just posted on sefl publishing: http://aalbc.com/tc/index.php?/topic/3387-a-very-good-indie-author-publishing-panel/ it touches on a lot of issues. that are important to self publishers and is certainly a start for more research.

Yes that is a good sign regarding Brooks; she is smart, connected and really cool people.  Make sure your query letter is done properly. The better prepared your are the more likely an agent will be willing to work with you.

Well I'm glad you found the website too :-) Spread the word.

Finally it is cool for you to post information about your book.  If you don't mind I took the liberty

magic-pearl.thumb.jpg.ee2406043e8e4e00e2

Edited by Troy

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That's interesting that your price was so high. What service did you use? I understand wanting an agent to submit the book for you to publishers, but be aware that the timeline of publication increases tremendously for your book if it is picked up. I hope it works out and Troy is the man for delivering all of that information. This board is much better than spending all day on Facebook. Good stuff everyone.

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Guest

Hello CDBurns,

I used Archway Publishing for the production of The Hunt for the Magic Pearl. I am not too happy with my choice.  According to them, the price was so high because of the color used on the illustrations. I had a blowout with them because my colors--the rich blues and greens were not up to my specifications. I don't even have glossy pages for this price that I paid. However, the content is great with a narrative sends an awesome message to our children of color who should dream of becoming royalty--mighty queens and beautiful princesses of underwater kingdoms. It also reminds us that we still have much to explore in terms of our mighty waters--the powerful and majestic oceans and seas. Too many of our children drown needlessly. We must start to teach our young ones how to swim safely and direct their interests to the water sports in the Olympics. Oh, there is so much out there for our babies. We can start by providing them with great reading materials with characters of all types and colors that look like them. I love my people and I cherish our children. I must get published in a credible way where I can reach not only the children, but their parents.

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Guest Shirley G. Perry-Church

Hello Troy,

I just want to say that you are the best! Thanks for posting my book. The Hunt for the Magic Pearl is wonderful, but The Peanut Butter Trap is, as they say, "off the chain." I hope that I can say what is on my heart at this time. I sincerely believe that the literary agencies that I have queried with this particular manuscript fear its power to speak to our youths--especially our young men. It is powerful in its narration and speaks volumes about the strength and resolve that our young men possess. I must get it published and put into the hands of all children.

Brief synopsis: "Joshua, a fourteen year old, black and white, male rat is very intelligent for his years. He doesn't understand why the humans, whom the rats see as green, greedy, giants, hate him and his kind so much. Could it be that he and his family were chased from a beautiful home in the suburbs of Chicago, only to end up in the basement of a cramped, damp, house in the inner city, simply because of how they look?" 

I have great and powerful stories to tell. I sure do want the opportunity to get my work out there!

Troy, again I thank you so much for caring, sharing, and supporting :)

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Okay, you definitely went the wrong route with that. Once you had your books edited then your first stop could have been Lulu.com or Createspace. You also had at your disposal a company named Lightning Source that works in direct relationship with Ingram and gives you the potential to place your book every where. More important is that if your book was released and you have the time and energy (which you will still need when you get a traditional book deal) you could have set your website up to take orders before making a single book which means that any thing you made would have been profit.

We do a yearbook for our kids every year on Lulu. We homeschool our kids. The yearbook is Full Gloss Color and typically between 50 to 100 pages. The price ranges from 13-20 dollars per book to produce and we only make a limited amount for family to show them what the kids are doing. Our priced is based on 8 pictures per page full color from digital files. If we made 50 copies the price would drop considerably. In short, you definitely got jobbed by that company. A gloss children's book with 60 pages and as few pages as with illustrations that you had saddle stitched should only be about 7-11 bucks a book. That's not an exaggeration but a very good estimation. Using Lulu you would not have spent a dime up front.

As you continue to pursue an agent, you should rewrite your business plan and look at an arrangement with Troy and with bloggers of books (which are hard to find these days) and then look at your local schools and build your business around using either Lulu, Createspace or Lightning Source... in that order. If your book is good enough all schools have funds available under Title 1 and they can purchase class sets. You can literally sell your books to the grade level and set up a day with the author event which teachers would die to have because it takes one day of teacher planning away from them and gives them a break, lol. 

Either way it goes, I definitely wish you luck on the next step.

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Thanks CDBurns,

I know they got me!!! I have so many regrets about this first book. But I am sure you know the saying: "Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice, shame on you!" There is a lot of ugly greed in this world. As I go forward, I am seeking all the good advice that I can find. I truly appreciate you taking the time to enlighten me. I will be researching  LuLu.com and the others today.

I would also like to know more about what it is that Troy has to offer in terms of helping me to navigate through the book publishing maze. I have spent a lot of money and what money I spend in the future must be money well spent. I am walking very cautiously now. I leave you with another saying that I adhere to: "Live and Learn." I am learning.:)

Thanks so much for the support.

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Guest

Hello, my audio on my computer is not working. I can't wait to hear what this clown had to say. I swear he missed his calling. Bush was never meant to be a president because he was better at being a comedian. I couldn't cry by his actions because I was too busy laughing at him.  Thanks, I'll let you know when I can hear him.

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Hello CDBurns,

I was going through some of the posts this morning and I saw that I never got to watch the video on Bush that you shared with me. I recently got the sound back on the computer. I recall his attempt at the "Fool Me" quote. It was hilarious then, but for some reason, this morning it was even better. I really needed this laugh. Thanks :)

Shirley

P.S. I am starting a few online courses at Gotham Writers in January. Have you heard of them? Since, I do occasionally enjoy writing what I consider to be poetic verse, I may even take a course in poetry writing some time next year. However, right now, I want to interact with more people who are out there trying to get it right so that they can get a chance at the traditional publishing route for MG, YA, and Adult Fiction and Nonfiction.  I still have not ruled out LuLu for my future needs. Thanks again for all your advice.

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No problem at all. I've heard of Gotham. I'm a fan of any program that brings writers together so just go for it!!!! I definitely say go for the traditional route because it does allow you to look like a more professional writer. Success stories come from all angles though so just do what feels comfortable. I'm glad you got a laugh in on that Bush clip. It is hilarious.

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Guest African-American Agent/Pub

Hello to All!

 

Researching an entirely different topic, this disconnected site was listed with the results. 

After reading several posts, I realized that I should add this information to the list.

 

Ichthus Inspirational Publications

ichthushouse.org

Rene' Thomson --- Publisher/Editor/Agent

theichthus1@gmail.com

 

Rene' helped me to self-publish and market a textbook for my school, Crooked Places Made Straight Christian Academy. I am currently in my third printing; that's how effective and knowledgeable she is at publishing for "our people." 

 

Rene' is a Christian publisher of mixed fiction and nonfiction genres (NO EROTICA), however, she does (occasionally) accepts mainstream centered manuscripts. Take it from me, agents that are not for "our people" will reject your manuscript because they do not believe they can sell it, so you can expect to continue your agent search for a long time.  

 

Best wishes to all!

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Guest Candace

I wrote a book that has approx. 109,000 words. The message needs to be out there. How much could something like that cost to print? Also, I definitely want a Black agency. They can identify with my book on a level that will bring agency dollars. Been reading my book at my reading club which is 90% white, and I got them begging for more. They are totally hooked! I need an agent, and I need one fast. When others want to purchase, I don't want to order books that I have no money to buy. Please help. Thanks

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Candace getting an agent can be as hard as getting a book deal. There are suggestions posted above, you can also look at the acknowledgements in books similar to yours and see if the thanks there agent and reach out to that person.

 

Has you book been professionally edited yet?  You want to present your best possible book when securing an agent.

 

To estimate printing cost For a 5.5x8.5 size book, you have approximately 300 words per page.  109K words would be about 368 page for finished book.  Which if you printed 200 copies with me that would cost you $5.90 per book.  You may use my printing calculator here.

 

I'll assume the book is unedited. An edited version would be shorter -- probably a lot shorter.  This would of course make your printing and shipping cost lower.  We provide editing services here.

 

Of course you can skip the agent step and independently publish your book.  If you have the demand you suggest this may be the way to go especially if you want to proceed more quickly.  If you generate a lot of sales you next book could be published through a publishing company.

 

Good luck.

 

 

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Guest j-No

Hello everyone.

Especially you guys.

I say that because I am in the peculiar position of trying to find a literary agent who will represent me.  I have two strikes against me.  I am male, and have written a slightly-fictionalized memoir and collection of short stories which will primarily be of interest to men.  And because of the curve of the story, I think it will further appeal more to an African-American audience.  The characters and culture represented markedly shift  (chronologically) away from the bigoted white culture I grew up in in rural Texas to the almost entirely Black culture that I live in now.   Full disclosure: I am a straight white older male, but have been a Harlem resident for going on 20 years.   And NOT in gentrified Harlem, either.  I can foresee that most likely my writings will be superficially perceived as anti-white.  And possibly sexist.  I say 'superficially' because that is neither my views or my intent, but just my experiences and the people I have known, which is just the facts.   I can imagine the majority of white readers trashing it before the half-way point and the remaining women maybe two thirds of the way, LOL.  I was inspired to write in the first place because all my friends (and mostly the women) (who are 95% Black) said they thought it would be important and enlightening to get my rather unusual life out there.  It is written with a very cynical humorous undercurrent, with an eye on the ludicrous, subtlety incorporating both the shame and promise of American culture without being didactic.  Getting such a book into the hands of people who will even bother to read it is a major hurdle.   The novel is very self-critical and motive-questioning, as well as no-holds-barred portrayals of the incredible unique and fascinating people I have known, loved, hated, married, divorced.   Friends who have read excerpts and actually help me edit have said I am probably in for a rough ride, particularly from women.  The short stories largely leave me out of the picture and are more serious.

Long story short:  I have been unable to locate an agent who would shop such a book around.  Any suggestions would be GREATLY appreciated.  Sorry for the very long explanation.  Too much caffeine today.  

Am I supposed to say anything else about myself?  Fashion/event photographer, retired scientist, welder, radio dj, farmer, ex-con.  my blog:  nytcap.tumblr.com 

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