Agents and Genre and Websites, Oh My

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This was supposed to publish last Tuesday…don’t know what happened.

Three peaches on a wooden table. One has two leaves still attached and another is cut in half. The knife lays on the table, in front of the peaches.

Peaches by Royalty Free Images flickr.com/photos/royalty-free-images/139739076

I picked up The Peach Keeper because in my great agent search, I’m still figuring out where my book falls. When looking at some agents’ client/book lists, I see that women’s fiction is another way to say romance. The covers are chick lit-y or the descriptions center around the romance. When looking at other agents’ lists, I can see that women’s fiction has a broader meaning. They talk about wanting books for book club discussions or wanting to read strong female characters or needing books dealing with female issues (which makes me think of tampon commercials, but anyway…).

When I can’t figure out how an agent defines women’s fiction, I pick up one of their clients’ book…if I can figure out which book is for which genre. Agent websites are all over the place in terms of usefulness. Listing the authors alphabetically or the titles by year of print…not helpful. Dividing them by fiction and non-fiction is somewhat helpful, actually categorizing them by the genre they sold as? Priceless.

The Peach Keeper was a fun, easy read. More along the lines of a chick-lit or light romance than what I would consider women’s fiction. I enjoyed it as a light book before I delve into some of the darker books on my nightstand. I think Julia is darker, but both books share female protagonists who dig into their families’ pasts.

I’m not sure what genre the agent thought this book fell into, so my grand scheme of how to pin down an agent may fizzle.

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2 thoughts on “Agents and Genre and Websites, Oh My

  1. bethfinke

    Sending out an ms is a lot of work, but yikes, it sounds to me like you are making it even harder on yourself than you need to. Back when I was sending my ms to agents and publishers, it didn’t cost much to mail the queries out. And so, I just wrote a query letter, copied it hundreds of times and sent it out to any and every publisher and/ or agent that vaguely fit my category. I sent along the first chapter or a summary or whatever they asked for and then figured the category I fit into would be determined by the ones who responded to my query!

  2. bethfinke

    PS: My memoir ended up being published in the “medicine” category, I might not have guessed that. My children’s book ended up qualifying as a book about “diversity” –I guess it *is* diverse to be a dog who can talk.

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