Friday, March 13, 2015

Write-to-Publish Faculty Interview: Jim Hart, Agent for Hartline Literary

 Tell us about your agency and whom do you hope to meet with at WTP?

Hartline Literary is a well respected agency that was established in 1992 by Joyce Hart, who at that time was already well experienced and connected in the industry. We represent both fiction and non-fiction for the CBA market, as well as selected general market titles. As a group – agents and our author/clients – we really enjoy our relationships with one another. We value working as a team toward our common and shared goals.

I’m hoping to meet fiction and non-fiction authors at WTP. For fiction I’m hoping to meet writers of women’s fiction -  romance and any sub-genre – contemporary, suspense, historical, etc.  Humor is always good. I’m also hoping to see some thrillers, sci-fi and speculative proposals, but not titles targeted just for YA, teens, or children. For non-fiction I’m looking forward to seeing church growth and Christian living work. Non-fiction authors with a platform such as speakers and ministry leaders will be of most interest.

How does a writer know if they need an agent?

When their manuscript is complete and they feel it’s ready to be presented to publishers. But often an agent can be of help before the manuscript is complete. We can review a proposal, or offer advice on how to write a proposal, and then begin to plan with the writer the next steps in their publishing journey. Some writers have already obtained a publishing contract, and as they progress in their career realize that they need a professional to represent their interests and to help them obtain a stronger presence in the market.

What do you, as an agent, want to see or hear from a writer when you meet with them?

Honesty, passion and exceptional creativity.

Anything you would like to add to help writers best prepare to be authors?

Writers need to develop a competitive edge by 1) outstanding writing skills, 2) an appropriate author platform and 3) knowledge of the industry. Write constantly, submit content to magazines and blog, and constantly research the publishing industry.

Write-to-Publish will be held June 3 – 6

in the Chicago area.

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