Hilary Davidson is successful non-fiction writer looking to break into crime fiction. I met her in New York this week at a MWA library event, and she told me a recent short story of hers in THUGLIT attracted the attention of a New York agent. Her WIP novel was forwarded to the agent, some suggestions were made, some rewrites, but now her novel is about to go on submission -- a direct result of that short story being published. Nice to know at least some pros are out there looking for new talent.

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That's great news, not just for Hilary but for everyone.

Thanks, Jack.
Very cool--and worth noting that publication in online journals/mags may just attract the attention of actual agents, etc.
One reason I posted this: I think writers give up looking for an agent, and they shouldn't. I know it's hard. I wrote three manuscripts before I found one, and when the book didn't sell, he dumped me, and it took me another four manuscripts and networking to find another. But having an agent is the single best way to have people find and read your work on a bigger scale. And it looks like online short-story writing is another way unrepresented writers can find one.
The good news is that there are more ways to get a foot in the door nowadays. The bad news is that there are a hell of a lot of feet, and not that many doors. Or maybe there are a lot of doors, but almost all of them are to broom-closets.
Lots of people trying to elbow in thru those limited doorways. I guess you have to develop you techniques in how to elbow better than the next person.
The same thing happened to Stuart Neville last year, a THUG LIT story he wrote was read by uber-agent Nat Sobel (represents James Ellroy amd Richard Russo). Mr. Sobel took him on as a client - then sold his book THE TWELVE (UK) THE GHOSTS OF BELFAST (US).

THUG LIT is definitely the place where agents are scouting.
Wow! That's great. I had no idea. I bet they were excellent stories.
This is really great to know. It is good to know somebody's out there looking. It is important to get your work out there in as many places as you can. Thanks for sharing this. It is very encouraging.
That gives hope, especially to those on their own agent search.
It's not just online stories. I've had good things come as the result of a story in AHMM (an Italian publisher wanting to publish a translation of CURSE OF THE KISSING COUSINS) and an anthology story (a Dutch guy looking for stories for a reprint anthology.) I'm starting to think short stories are my best marketing tool.
Well, yeah. When they keep getting nominated for the top awards!
That sure doesn't suck!

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