If You Are As Yet Unpublished - Please Read This
You may not like what I’m going to say, but I’ll say it anyway.
Most of the submissions sent to literary agents see are simply not ready to be shown.
Writing is a hard craft to learn. It requires enormous amounts of dedication, application and determination. Grit and sweat.
You may think your first manuscript is ready for prime time, but the odds are against.
So what can you do?
I set up Litopia, the net’s original community for writers, over fifteen years ago. The aim was to create a unique place where writers can be personally supported and their craft honed. It’s free to join, by the way, and it should be your first destination when venturing into the world of publishing.
The atmosphere in Litopia is very collegiate. It’s part word palace and part sweat-shop, Litopia is home to many successful writers. It is a place where friendships are forged and excellence in writing is developed.
You can develop your work there in what we term “The Houses”. Many writers have affectionate feelings about Litopia, and owe much to its unique method of literary critiquing.
Join it, and you’ll see.
Once your work is ready – truly ready – then you can submit to Redhammer using the form below. Here is a summary of frequently asked questions.
Do you accept non-fiction as well as fiction?
Yes, I’m always keen to see outstanding autobiographies, whistleblowers (I represented the first Enron book), celebrity tales, and anything else that is truly exceptional.
What do you want to see?
I need the first ten pages of your manuscript. Nothing more than that. Other agents have more complex demands, e.g.1 page mini-synopsis, author biography, and so on. I don’t need any of that, at this stage. What I want to see is your raw writing talent. Given that, all else is possible.
Do you accept unpublished authors?
Nothing makes me happier than discovering prodigious talent. Make my day!
Can I email you rather than use your form?
No. Please use the form below to make initial contact. It’s there for a reason.
Can I phone you instead?
Compared to many other agents, I’m actually very approachable. For example, I maintain a constant presence inside Litopia, where anyone can ask me anything.
Even so, I still do get a lot of pitches by phone. Please don’t. It’s a major distraction to an already-overfull day, and it never works.
Can I send again if you reject the first time?
My best advice is to join Litopia, and workshop your manuscript there. Many writers have improved their work – and more importantly, their skills – beyond all measure in the Colony. And when the time is right, you can of course re-submit.
Do you accept multiple submissions?
Why not? And who’s to know, in any case?
If you are a UK-based author, you might also consider submitting your work to the following literary agents who are members of the Association of Authors’ Agents:
If you are certain your work is of a sufficiently high standard to be submitted to Redhammer, please use the form below. You should always keep a copy for yourself as we are unable to return work or enter into any correspondence about it.