A few years ago when I started writing novels again, I decided not to pursue a literary agent. I really wanted to focus on writing the novels I’d wanted to write for a long time and working out the kinks in the process (basically, shifting gears from writing short stories to longer work). I knew I’d be learning a lot and figured there were enough markets to submit my novels to without the involvement of an agent. So that’s what I’ve been doing. I’ve written four novels and all are out for consideration at various publishing houses.
I also wanted to give myself time to research various agencies and track some agents over time, the deals they’ve made, the clients they’ve represented and so on. So I’ve kind of been working on an agent shopping list, if you will. Why? Well, with the fifth novel, which I began writing recently but have been plotting out for almost a year, I’ve decided I’d start the hunt for an agent. The novel will be finished by the end of they year and I’ll start querying agents actively.