1. Nothing inspires readers like a memoir by an author who struggled to overcome a serious illness. Maybe you should get a disease.
2. Buttering the agent up with a little bit of praise can't hurt your chances. Tell her she has a sensuous mouth and beautiful kids.
3. Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have an agent? Then be sure to start your query with a rhetorical question
4. Sick of waiting weeks for responses? Send your query as a mass e-mail blast to fifty agents, so they know there's competition.
5. A query should be no more than 300 words, and at least 180 of them should be adjectives.
6. Self-publishing is a great way to become obscure.
7. Hand-write your queries to give them a personal touch. To really impress agents, send handwritten full manuscripts. Unsolicited.
8. Try to write a novel that has a built-in audience, such as a sequel to another author's popular series.
9. Send your query to "Dear Agent" or "Dear Sir/Madam" to avoid the embarrassment of accidentally misspelling someone's name.
10. When pitching at a conference, remember that a professional handshake should last at least 45 seconds. Hang on to that agent!
11. Everyone drinks at conferences. If you're sober, you'll look like a narc. Pound three Jäger shots twenty minutes before your pitch.
12. It is easier to publish if you write in a hot genre. Most agents are looking for Amish technothrillers and YA erotica right now.
13. Idioms and folk-sayings form a bond of familiarity between your characters and readers. They're as useful as can be!
14. Once you have an agent, call her twice a day, just to check in.
15. Don't compromise your artistic vision just because some PC liberals say your book is "racist." You're just telling it like it is!
16. Friend your favorite author on Facebook. Once you are friends, he'll be delighted when you show up at his house to hang out.