Author Thomas Umstattd, Jr.

What I Am Looking for As an Agent

A book has no impact if no one reads it, and how can people read a book they have never heard of? While I am a new agent, I am not new to the industry. For over a decade, I have helped Christian authors change the world by helping them market their books.

I’ve built their websites, managed advertising, and counseled them on their business practices, and in some cases been part of their spiritual growth.

These are the things I want to continue to offer, but now as an agent to a select number of authors.

The kind of authors I’m looking for have three primary qualities:

  • Courage
  • Resonance
  • Hustle

Courage

The world is broken. As Christians, we have the truth of Christ that the world desperately needs.

I want to partner with authors who are willing to face that brokenness and write the truth even when the truth hurts to write. Can you write truth to power others while motivated by love? If so, I want to stand with you as you change the world. If you’ve been persecuted for your position, I want to see your proposal.

To be clear, I’m looking for more than just controversial books. Your book doesn’t need to be controversial to advance the Kingdom. I am looking for authors with the courage to write clearly and the courage to promote their work publicly. Remember, courage is not the absence of fear; it is correct action in the face of fear.

I’m looking for authors:

  • with clear, simple writing.
  • who are willing to tackle today’s controversial issues and topics.
  • with a track record of putting themselves out there as the face of their message.
  • who have a passion for the truth in their writing.

Resonance

You have a message. I want to see that you have found an audience that resonates with your message.

Do people retweet your tweets, share your blog posts, and invite you to speak on their stage? I am not concerned about the size of the audience as much as the passion of your people. Gideon’s three hundred can be better than Saul’s legions.

I’m looking for authors:

  • who know who they are reaching with their message and more importantly who they are not trying to reach. I am looking for specifically defined audiences that go beyond demographic information like age and gender.
  • with a blog, podcast, or YouTube channel with an active following. I want to see your analytics/insights/stats.

Hustle

Your message deserves someone willing to put in the work to get it out into the world. I’m looking for authors who realize success won’t be handed to them on a silver platter and are willing to do the work, both to learn and to do. Are you hungry to learn? If so, I want to teach you everything I know.

I’m looking for authors:

  • who have made publishing a priority by saying no to distractions and putting in the time to create and grow.
  • with a track record of improvement over time. Has your blog grown? Is the quality getting better? That’s what I am looking for!
  • who continue to read books and listen to podcasts to improve their craft at both writing and marketing.

What I’m not looking for:

  • Adult or YA fiction (children’s books are fine)
  • Cookbooks
  • Poetry
  • Memoirs
  • Books not intended for a Christian market.

 

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