Today we bring you another installment in our series of Q & As with the agents and editors of the 2011 Agents Conference, featuring Ryan Fischer-Harbage of the Fischer-Harbage Agency. The Agents Conference is coming up on June 10-12, and don’t forget to register before the online deadline of June 3!
How did you get started in publishing?
-Upon graduating with a BA in English, I attended the Radcliffe Publishing Course (now Columbia Publishing Course). My first job was as an editorial assistant at Doubleday Book Clubs. From there I went to Little, Brown, then to Penguin, then Simon and Schuster. Five years ago I switched to agency side.
What’s the average number of submissions you receive in a month?
-Anywhere from two to twelve query letters arrive daily.
If you could give writers one small piece of advice about the world of publishing, what would it be?
-When you’re ready to send your work out, when you feel it’s complete, edit it one more time.
Who was your first client?
-Veteran journalist and editor Louise Sloan.
What was the first project you sold?
-KNOCK YOURSELF UP by Louise Sloan.
What do you love most about your job?
-Calling writers and telling them that a publisher has made an offer for their work.
What is something that you often see beginning writers doing wrong?
What is a little known fact about yourself?
– My favorite novel is LONESOME DOVE by Larry McMurtry.
What book are you reading right now?
– MATTERHORN by Karl Marlantes; FORDLANDIA by Greg Grandin; THE HUNGER GAMES by Suzanne Collins.
If you could have a beer or coffee with a literary luminary living or dead, who would it be and why?
Beer or coffee?