I’m off to the London Book Fair next week to see if I can find an agent for The Revolutionary Tapestry and in the throws of getting prepared.
First job is looking at the actual novel again – I am broadly happy with it, but in scanning again I noticed a dozen or so typos and other mistakes. More importantly my wonderful wife Jules suggested I started by writing page long back stories/ sketches of each of the main characters to make sure the way they behave in each situation is consistent with who they are as people. There were several places where I was able to improve things having done this work first.
Jules is now busy reading it through again to make sure it is as good as it can be. She has spotted further mistakes – why it is always hard to sub your own writing as you see what you think you have written rather than the actual words.
Jules’ sister is also busy seeing if she can mock up a cover for the book to give people a quick visual idea of its contents and tone. I did a rough sketch myself which is above but I am sure the final version will look a lot less as if it was drawn by a five year old. Jules’ sister is an extremely talent artist – see her page Asmarabella Art for some of her work.
I addition I have been doing all of the background work. A key thing for agents and publishers to know is whether you are going to do your part in marketing the book. Not everyone can get away with Salinger or Pynchon anonymity and most first time authors are expected to get out there and publicise their work online and in the flesh. I have been updating my Facebook page and anyone who visits and likes this will earn my undying gratitude. Likewise anyone who buys my self published short story collection The Cat Factory and other Stories. A bargain at £2.08 for around 400 pages.
Jules also came up with a brilliant idea to help agents and others I talk to which will form the basis for a competition over the next couple of days.
Finally I have been going through the list of agents exhibiting to see which are open to submissions in the genre of the book and which person in the agency is likely to most positive towards it. As there are dozens of them and you need to visit each individual website to research this it is not a trivial job.
Wish me luck.