The 2012 Guide to Literary Agents

I know my readers are savvy web surfers, and you’re reading blogs and websites to learn about agents and publishing. But I cannot overstate the value of having this print resource on hand!

Guide to Literary Agents 2012

The 2012 Guide to Literary Agents is now available—and it’s less than twenty bucks. I think it’s an incredible value. Here’s what you’ll find inside:

  • Contact info and submission guidelines for hundreds of legitimate literary agencies.
  • Info on over 100 writers’ conferences around the country.
  • Complete glossary of publishing industry terms.
  • Over 40 articles written by top literary agents, addressing researching agents, writing queries, attending conferences, and much more.

Of course you won’t want to miss my article on Non-fiction Book Proposals! (You’ll find it on p. 56)

The Guide to Literary Agents is put together and constantly updated by Chuck Sambuchino, who also maintains the Guide to Literary Agents Blog on the Writers Digest site. Bookmark it for all the latest agent-related news!



In addition to your favorite websites and blogs, what PRINT resources do you keep on hand for navigating through publishing, finding an agent, proposal writing, etc?


Disclaimer: Yes, I received a free copy of this book. Yes, I wrote an article for it. And yes, my name is (gulp) on the cover. However… the reason I involve myself with the Guide to Literary Agents is because I believe in it – I think it’s a terrific resource! So my recommendation is in no way purchased or coerced.


Posted in ,

Rachelle Gardner

Literary agent at Books & Such Literary Agency. Coffee & wine enthusiast (not at the same time) and dark chocolate connoisseur. I've worked in publishing since 1995 and I love talking about books!


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  15. Jodi Janz on September 29, 2011 at 12:35 AM

    Thanks for the tip. I purchased Sally Stuart’s last year but did not get to the point of sending out any queries, so I will need to re-purchase an updated version. I will look into the two to see which one is better suited to my needs.
    However, I would love to read the articles – Sally’s doesn’t have that.

  16. LupLun on September 19, 2011 at 7:49 PM

    Got it last week, working through the listings agent by agent. Will query you when your turn comes around. ^_^ b


  17. TC Avey on September 19, 2011 at 1:19 PM

    I’ll put it on my wish list! My family and friends know books are the best gifts to give me!

  18. Jill Kemerer on September 19, 2011 at 12:36 PM

    Thanks for spreading the word about this terrific resource!

  19. Leigh Caron on September 19, 2011 at 12:00 PM

    It’s my submission bible.

  20. Hazel Keats on September 18, 2011 at 10:46 PM

    Every year Guide to Literary Agents has helped me one way or another. Not to mention I’ve met him and Chuck Sambunchino is a really nice guy. He really knows the ins and outs of publishing. No joke!

  21. Rebecca Boschee on September 18, 2011 at 8:05 PM

    This and Writer’s Market where the first 2 books I purchased after finishing my first novel, and I still subscribe to Chuck’s blog. It’s a wealth of information!

  22. Stephen King on September 18, 2011 at 4:30 PM

    Sorry for the double posts, but having thought a bit more about the matter I find myself needing to recant some of what I said earlier. I just went through and added twenty-two new agents to my query list in an online search, and I stopped short because I just don’t have time to query more at a time while making each query personalized. I also like the online information format because it’s easier to copy and paste to ensure proper name spelling and such. I can’t imagine there are that many agents out there who don’t make themselves available online, and those that do either a) are completely disconnected from the century in which we live, or b) take themselves way too seriously in their role as gatekeepers for the publishing industry. In either case, I don’t really want them representing me any more than I want someone who doesn’t accept e-mail queries representing me, no matter how desperate I seem to be sometimes.

    In any event, thank you for the information, but to quote the most succinct response I’ve received from an agent to date: “Thanks, but [I] will pass.”

  23. Beth MacKinney on September 18, 2011 at 4:29 PM

    Every year I buy and read the Children’s Writer’s and Illustrator’s Market for that year. Jammed full of information and insight. Can’t see how a writer for kids could survive without it.

    : )

  24. RamseyH on September 18, 2011 at 3:20 PM

    I think I stopped using these about 3 years ago – replaced everything with online research and a subscription to Query Tracker. The “phone book” of agents is convenient, but the tracking system at QT is priceless. It completely eliminated the need for me to keep endless spreadsheets – and type every last thing in by hand. It’s also great to have constantly updated info and to be able to see notes and feedback from other writers.

  25. Marji Laine on September 18, 2011 at 3:19 PM

    I was beginning to think these books were going the way of the Yellow Pages. Thanks for setting me straight on that!

  26. Loree Huebner on September 18, 2011 at 1:13 PM

    Thanks for the tip on the book.

    I also use the lastest edition of The Writer’s Market.

  27. Donna K. Weaver on September 18, 2011 at 12:06 PM

    Another question. Is this information available online, perhaps through subscription? I ask because, if the information is constantly being updated, as soon as the book goes to press it’s outdated.

  28. Brianna on September 18, 2011 at 11:08 AM

    These guides are some of my favorites for finding agents. I actually just donated my 2010 versions to the library. I was going to pass on 2012, figuring the information online is likely more up to date, but perhaps it’s worth investing again.

  29. Stephen King on September 18, 2011 at 10:12 AM

    Thank you for the notification; I’m looking forward to receiving my own copy.

    You asked about print resources that I use for … etc. In my quest to find either an agent or a publisher I’m using the Novel & Short Story Writer’s Market, though I admit to not using it very heavily up to now because I’ve found enough submission action online to keep me busy enough. I keep a couple of writers’ magazines, including of course WD, in my reading stack, and these have occasional “how to query” articles. Quite honestly, they’re all sounding the same now. I also read a couple of genre-specific periodicals (Fantasy & Science Fiction and Asimov’s Science Fiction) mostly for the enjoyment, but the bios that come with the stories (plus a little bit of online stalking) are good for seeing how other writers have found success.

    Somehow I still find time to write. 🙂

  30. Peter DeHaan on September 18, 2011 at 9:25 AM

    Thank you for letting us know about it.

    It’s non on my Amazon wish list – “highest” priority — and my birthday’s approaching, so I should have it soon!

  31. Erastes on September 18, 2011 at 8:16 AM

    I used to buy this, and The Writer’s Guide (the uK version) every year but I found that with the way the financial markets were going, that the information in the books was more unreliable than online sources. Agents moved on to other places, similarly editor shuffled around publishing houses

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  33. carol brill on September 18, 2011 at 7:27 AM

    This post brings back memories. Over 10 years ago, at one of my first writing conferences, I won Jeff Herman’s Writer’s Guide. It felt like an omen, validation that I was supposed to find an agent and publisher. Like Nancy, it was stuffed with post-it notes and dog-eared pages before I abandoned it for the web. After reading this post, I think I’ll follow Sharon’s lead and put it on my wish list.

  34. Sharon A Lavy on September 18, 2011 at 5:28 AM

    I just added this to my Amazon wish list.

    I’ll soon have enough can’t-live-without books on the list to avoid shipping costs.

    (I just hate to pay shipping, don’t you?)

  35. Andrea Nell on September 18, 2011 at 2:13 AM

    My go-to book has been Sally Stuart’s Christian Writer’s Market Guide. This year I’ll have to get the Guide to Literary Agents too! Thanks for the great posts, Rachel!

    • Sherri on September 18, 2011 at 6:39 PM

      Me too!

  36. Nancy S. Thompson on September 18, 2011 at 1:31 AM

    Ah, the GLA! Kind of like the querying writer’s bible. Mine is marked up with Post-it notes sticking out at every angle! I’ve found over 200 additional agents to query. Used in conjunction with other sources such as PW & AgentQuery, it is priceless. I guess I need to get the updated 2012 version.

  37. Linda Hoye on September 18, 2011 at 12:25 AM

    I just ordered this today!