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The Power of #MSWL

If you are on Twitter, you are looking for an agent and you haven’t yet checked out #MSWL (Manuscript Wish List) you’re doing yourself a disservice.

The #MSWL hashtag is a place where editors and agents update their newest wants and desires. No matter what an agency’s website says things change, and they can change dramatically. My website might say I’m actively looking for mysteries, but last night I just finished The Girl on the Train (which I haven’t actually finished yet) and now I’m dying for a suspense and scouring my query pile for the perfect book. For the next The Girl on the Train. This is the time to send me a suspense and I’ll let you know that on #MSWL. 
#MSWL let’s you know when an agent is hot for something and, maybe, when she’s actively looking for something instead of just browsing.
A couple of tips to making your #MSWL experience successful:
  1. Never pitch on Twitter. Once you see what an agent wants go to that agent’s website and follow the submission guidelines.
  2. Don’t write because of what you see on #MSWL. Just because four agents say they’re looking for something doesn’t mean you can write and submit it in time. Just keep an eye out for when that post appears that matches what you are writing.
  3. When querying because of #MSWL make sure to tell the agent. It will keep them Tweeting and might move your query to the top of the pile.
Good luck and have fun! I’ve encouraged all the agents at BookEnds to use #MSWL and I encourage all authors to pay attention to it. 
–jhf

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7 comments

  1. I love #MSWL. I believe it's how I found your site. Even if it did ultimately lead to another rejection. (Oh well, head up, carrying on.) Sigh… 🙂

    I have The Girl on the Train in my library holds list. I'm number 358 in the queue. (I usually borrow books from the library and only buy them after I read them if I really, really love them and feel that I must pass them on to my friends. I'd love to buy all the books I read, but a girl on a budget's gotta do, what a girl on a budget's gotta do.) The reviews on this book are so fantastic though, I might have to break down and buy it first.

  2. Thank you for this perfectly timed advice. I'd just reached the end of one resource for researching agents, and this will be most interesting/helpful … 🙂

  3. MSWL is a great tool, but like you stated its not for pitching. Every now and then I see an author using the hashtag to pitch their MS, over and over and over. Do agents notice this too?

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