A ‘typical’ day in the life of a literary agent. 

Before office opens at 9:30 – read submissions. I try to give the best energy each morning and read submissions. This means trying not to open my email inbox until 9:30. 

Have a massive cup of coffee and a jug of water on the desk. Review yesterday’s to-do list. 

9:30 AM – Write today’s to-do list. Open inbox – discard today’s to-do list to replace with the emails that have just come in. Answer the emails that have come in overnight. Read publishing news.

Answer interview requests for authors.

Draft contracts for a new agreement – check against previously agreed terms.

Proof an article that has come in from an author.

Check an author’s complaint about copyright infringement.

Revise the publication schedule for up-to-date publication dates. Coordinate with the translation rights team that all books are on submission to foreign publishers.

Send a client notes on their most recent manuscript.

Review client account statements and check that payment amounts are correct. 

Answer film agents’ requests for information on film rights. 

Invoice publishers for publication advances and delivery advances. Review accounts to make sure that all advances are up to date. 

Tweet support for an author. 

Send out proofs of a new book for author. 

*Lunch. Tea. Tea. Tea. 

Have phone calls with editors to discuss a submission. 

Review a proposal written by a client; send notes on the proposal. 

After work – read client delivery of manuscript. Read submissions. Write a to-do list for the next day.