Jeff Herman’s Guide to Book Publishers, Editors and Literary Agents: Who They Are, What They Want, How to Win Them Over

A Review

Writers, agents and editors agree that Jeff Herman’s Guide is the go-to reference for authors who want to publish with a traditional publisher. It helps you get past the slush pile and into the hands of the pros who have the power to publish your book. The latest edition, which is its 24th, also includes the latest information about self-publishing, ebooks and digital publishing.

I used it myself when I was looking for an agent and publisher for my memoir, Riding Grace. It was the one must-have reference every author I knew agreed was the reference book to use — if this is your first, second or twentieth book. And I agree.

What I discovered is it not only made my job easier, but Herman’s guide was filled with insider information on what you need to do to (and not to do) to get past the gatekeepers to the people who can say “yes” to publishing your book and make your book proposal or synopsis and cover letters stand out from the thousands of other submissions. It also included editors and agents names, addresses, preferences and personal details.

That’s why it is now in its 24th edition. The guide has been updated with the latest on what you need, including:

  • Information about agents and over 300 U.S. and Canadian publishers and imprints
  • Insider tips on how to approach them, including invaluable pointers from 150 of the most powerful literary agents.
  • A comprehensive index broken down by subject and category for finding the perfect agent or imprint
  • Guidelines for creating a book proposal and writing a standout query letter
  • Scams and what to look for from predatory agents and editors
  • current publishing trends
  • “How-to” essays on the future of publishing, self-publishing trends, social media and more.

Jeff Herman’s own literary agency has ushered nearly 1000 books into publication. He is also the coauthor of Write the Perfect Book Proposal. His website is


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