Jennifer Carlson of Dunow, Carlson & Lerner

Jennifer Carlson of Dunow, Carlson & Lerner

Agent Advice

Posted 3.19.13

What are you looking to see in a writing sample, specifically in the first five pages?

Wikidd from
Meriden,
CT
Dunow, Carlson & Lerner Literary Agency
27 West 20th Street
Suite 1107
New York, NY 10011

I want to see that it works: characters, narrative voice, the opening strokes of plot—all grooving in unison like the opening to a great song, no matter what genre (though admittedly, heavy metal is not for me). Or, to put it another way, I’m looking for pretty much the same thing you’re looking for when you browse the bookstore, randomly picking up books and glancing over the first page. Do you keep going or do you put it down? Whereas you’re thinking, “Do I want to buy this?” I’m thinking, “Can I sell this?”

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