With the changing publishing industry and so many opportunities to self-publish electronically, it seems more writers are striking out on their own. I don’t know about you, but I find myself asking the question: Do I need an agent?

At the recent Frontiers in Writing Conference, I was on the faculty with Hilary Sayers, former fiction acquisitions editor for Kennsington Publishing Company. She has been in the industry for many years and is a wealth of information about the industry. I asked her “Do i need an agent?”

Her answer: In spite of the fact that I have books published with small publishers and have plans to release some self-published books using Nook and Kindle to broaden my availability to reach my market, Hilary said I still need an agent. The advantages of getting an agent include their connections in the industry and ability to get your book in front of editors in the big publishing houses. Most of the big houses cannot be penetrated without an agent. In addition, an agent knows all the ins and outs of the business. They are professionals at negotiating contracts and can get the best terms available for their clients. Getting an agent to represent you is still very much a part of the process to full success in publishing.