Submissions

Great writing is the lifeblood of our agency and the publishing industry, and we eagerly scour the numerous submissions we receive for new talent. If you are serious about writing, we’d love to hear from you.

We now only accept submissions by email, so please do not send your submission in the post. Direct your submission to one of our agents; you may find it useful to look at the agent biographies. Don’t worry about submitting to the wrong agent; if one of us feels it may be a better fit with another Watson, Little agent, we will pass it on.

What To Send

As a general rule, a submission should include a cover letter, synopsis and writing sample. Please send the synopsis and writing sample in a Word document (not pdf), double-spaced and in 12pt font.

Cover Letter

Please tell us briefly about your story or proposal – this is to be included in the body of the email and not as a separate attachment. If you have any writing experience – previous publications (books, short stories, journalism, whether online or in print), creative writing courses – do tell us. We’d also like to know a little about you – your background, interests, job, writers you like and admire – especially anything that might be relevant to your submission.

Synopsis

This should not be a blurb or tagline. Instead, be factual and outline the plot or structure in a succinct way so that we can see the shape of your book and how it progresses beyond the sample. It should be no more than one page in length.

Material

The true test of writing is, inevitably, in the reading of it, so please include a sample of the book in your submission.

For fiction, the sample length will depend on the nature of your material, but as a general rule send approximately 10,000 words or the nearest equivalent. Please send this as a single document, taken from the beginning of the book (as much as you might feel (for example) chapters three, seven and fourteen demonstrate your strongest writing, it is disorientating to read and counterproductive).

Most non-fiction is sold on proposal, so the requirements are somewhat different. In your proposal (again sent as a single document), please address the following:

  • The subject of the book you propose and why it needs to be written and published now
  • Your background and credentials for writing the book
  • Where you envision the book would sit on the shelves, including similar previously published books
  • A chapter of sample text
  • A list of potential chapters and chapter summaries

What not to submit

We do not represent poetry or screenplays for film, television, radio or theatre (though our associate agencies work in many of these areas). However, if we agree to work with you on a book, we will represent all rights, including dramatic, for that book.

Response and Return

Due to the great volume of submissions we receive, we are unable to acknowledge receipt.

We read every submission made to us as quickly as we can, but must give priority to the authors we already represent. We endeavour to read and respond within four to six weeks.

We understand that you may want to submit to multiple agents at once. If you do, we ask that you would keep us informed of developments elsewhere so that we can take a view in the best and most timely fashion.

Please keep a copy of anything you submit to us, and don’t send original artwork. We cannot be held responsible for the loss of or damage to any typescripts, artwork or electronic media submitted to us.

Please note, we no longer accept submissions in the post. Send all submission queries to submissions@watsonlittle.com

Remember to include your contact details, especially your email address and phone number.

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