Home > Writing > What Makes Agents Stop Reading (SiWC)

What Makes Agents Stop Reading (SiWC)

Great post summarizing why agents stop reading manuscripts after only a page (or less). Some reasons are familiar, others not so much. Taken as a whole they make a good list to refer back to before submitting that next manuscript.

H.G. Bells

First off, congrats to Phillipa, the winner of my first ever book giveaway!

Thanks to everyone who entered.  I will be doing another one soon, and you’ll have another chance to win then, by commenting here, on Reddit, and my Facebook page.  🙂

And now, more notes from SiWC!  This time I’ll be taking a look at their wonderful “Surrey International Writers’ Conference IDOL”.  Basically, it’s four people skilled in the art of rejecting authors, and one person who reads.  What do they read?

Everyone is invited to submit the first page- ONLY the first page- of their manuscript.  It’s blind and it’s stark and brutal and beautiful; the words have to do the work, there’s no preamble, no explanation, no baggage of any kind to go along with them.

Here are the rules: if one of the four judges raise their hand, the reader…

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Categories: Writing
  1. November 7, 2013 at 5:50 am

    This is a great post, Dave. Thanks for sharing. I loved, “waking up (don’t start your story with your character waking up) (seriously, don’t).”

    • November 8, 2013 at 10:58 pm

      Yeah, I thought it was great how they emphasized not starting a story with “waking up”. I guess it is pretty cliche, huh? Glad you liked the post, Jill.

  2. November 8, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    Very interesting! Thanks for sharing. I love reading stuff like these, even though I don’t plan on working with agents if I don’t have too 😉

    • November 8, 2013 at 10:59 pm

      I hear you on that. It would be great to avoid agents altogether. Who knows, maybe we’ll be lucky enough to avoid having to go down that path. If not, at least we know what to avoid, right? 🙂

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