I have done the degree in writing. I have written the novel/s. I have paid for them to be edited. I have gathered feedback and passed them around to my beta-readers. I have sent them to numerous literary agents. I have attended smaller writing clubs/circles. I have gained advice.
I have never given up.
But there was something else, an avenue I hadn’t yet considered until two weeks ago, when I fell upon an interview with a literary agent at Curtis Brown UK. She spoke about how applying to the Curtis Brown Creative classes, which have been running for 9 years out of their London office and led by their literary agents and successful UK authors, was a great opportunity for writers to become published. I only had hours until the applications would be closed, but after googling their courses, I realised just how incredible the opportunities were for would-be-authors.
Rewind 20 years ago when I was a teenager, writing romance novels. I decided to start researching how one went about becoming a published author. Little did I understand the nearly impossible journey it would take to get there. Back then, people compared the odds of becoming published to winning lotto. First, I needed an agent. They were the gatekeepers to the publishing world. You could go straight to the publishers, but you’re more than likely to end up in the slush pile.
The first literary agent I researched was Curtis Brown, founded in 1899. They became a household name that I’d utter whenever I spoke to my mum or sister about who I wanted representing me. They were like the rulers of the literary kingdom, representing the likes of Winston Churchill, Margaret Atwood, A.A. Milne, DH Lawrence, Daphne du Maurier, Ian Fleming, Marian Keyes, Jojo Moyes, David Nicholls (just to name a few).
Now, they also represent directors, TV series and really, really famous actors/actresses.
So, when I stumbled across this interview, I thought I might as well apply. Only 15 get in to partake in this 3 month course, so I really didn’t think I’d get in.
But I did get in. And to say I’m excited is an understatement.
The course runs with tutorials from bestselling UK authors, webinars with editors and the literary agents from Curtis Brown, one-to-one meetings with the agents and editors and pitching opportunities. We work in small groups of 3 and are able to gather feedback from like-minded writers, all the while polishing our work. We have lessons in the publishing industry and how it all works and at the very end, the whole team at Curtis Brown sit and consider your manuscript.
100 students have already gone on to gain major publishing deals in 9 years. They consider this course to be comparable to a Masters degree in creative writing. It’s well-recognised by other agencies and publishers around the world, and I’m so excited to begin!
I’ve done lots to further my goals of becoming published, but this is the next best thing.
Like, I said: I never give up. This is another step closer to the finish line. I’m just hoping that I can do it for my 15 year-old-self.
Thanks for stopping by,