What would you give to have an agent, who tells you everything you need to find an agent, like an agent-agent? In Storytellers Summit 2016 we sat down with a super helpful literary agent, Dara Hyde of Hill Nadel Agency.

In Dara Hyde’s Storyteller Summit interview, she gave us tips for how to seek out an agent, and a detailed tour of what happens from there. She answered the one burning question that many writers have: what exactly does an agent do? And Why do I need one? (Even though you know you need one.) Her willingness to carefully lay out the many aspects of the complicated relationship among agent, editor and writer proved to me that she would be an excellent person in whom to trust the charge of your book-to-be, and your career as an author.

I had one other burning question, even though I’ve been traditionally published (Motherhood to Otherhood, Running Press, 2008) self-pubbed (RV There Yet? BookSurge, 2005) and indie-pubbed, (Sex, Lies & Creativity, Difference Press, 2014). I still had to ask why, in this day and age, does it still take a full year and a half to get a book from contract to bookshelf? She obliged me with a thorough explanation. (Haven’t you wondered that?)

You can get a book published quickly these days, if that’s your goal. Or you can bring your book into the publishing industry, where it enters a very different arena, and a development and distribution track. Your book is positioned, prepared, read and sold in by many layers of representatives, at the publishing company – editorial, publicity, design, marketing and sales, printers, shipping, and then in the marketplace with press, book retailers, library buyers and more. Things are linear, and one thing can’t happen until the prior step is completed to everyone’s satisfaction (including yours.) So dang, that makes sense. Even in this crazy internet-paced world, some things are still printed on paper and handed from human hand to human hand to make their way in the big world. Ah… Books.