Friday, December 7, 2012

Interview: Being a Bestselling Author and Top Agent: Lucienne Diver

Nothing is cooler than contacting an author that you love and getting a response!

Today we have an interview that I did with one of my favorite authors, where I ask her how she balances her responsibilities as a top agent and a bestselling author!

Lucienne Diver is an agent that represents some of the hottest names in the fantasy genre--Chloe Neill, N.K. Jemisin, Faith Hunter, Rachel Caine, and Rob Thurman, just to name a few.

If that isn't cool enough, Mrs. Diver is also a bestselling author.

This is her Latter-Day Olympians series featuring a heroine who can literally stop men in their tracks.

Book 1
Book 2

This is her Young Adult Vampire novels, the Vamped  series, about a teen fashionista who goes from chic to eek when she wakes up as one of the undead.

How does it work when you’re both a top agent and bestselling author?

I couldn't possibly be both at the same time! I write first thing in the morning, before my inner-agent/critic comes on-line. It’s the only way I’m able to get the words onto the page. Once the coffee kicks in and they wake up, it’s game over. Normal business hours (and then some), I’m my agent-self – negotiating contracts, critiquing others’ work, writing pitches, sending out submissions, fielding phone calls, collecting quotes, etc.

Do you represent yourself?

No. I've been an agent for nineteen years now, though it doesn't seem nearly that long. (I guess time flies when you’re having fun.) Anyway, as an agent, I’m confident. I know that my authors are incredible, and it’s easy to advocate for them. As an author, I’m riddled with insecurities, and I need someone who can be for me what I am for my clients.

What are the pluses and pitfalls of being an agent and author? 

I think it’s difficult to wear both hats, mainly because of the perception. I don’t do nearly as much promotion of my work as I probably should for fear that someone will think I’m taking time away from my agenting duties. So really, it’s my self-promotion that often gets left in the dust. (To my publishers: I’ll be better, I promise!)

Are you writing a new book?

Always! I’ve temporarily had to put away the dark YA that I’m writing on spec, because it insists on being written and perfected before I get it out there, to start the third novel in my Latter-Day Olympians series. The first two are already out: Bad Blood (digital and print) and Crazy in the Blood (digital Aug. 7, print in 2013). I don’t want to give too much away, but in the third novel readers will finally get to meet my heroine’s crazy family that they’ve heard so much about in the first two.

As an agent and author, I bet you have to read lots of books. However, what genre do you enjoy reading for fun and who are some of your favorite authors?

I enjoy all of the genres I represent, so I don’t have just one go-to genre. In my recent free time (ha!), I’ve read books by Janet Evanovich, Joshilyn Jackson, Erik Larson, Suzanne Collins, Rick Riordan and Barry Lyga. Other favorites include Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (of course!), Mary Stewart, Sharyn McCrumb, Aaron Elkins, Laurell K. Hamilton…I could go on practically forever.

With indie authors on a rise and so many traditionally published authors looking toward self-publishing, where do you see the publishing industry in ten years? 

Well, first I want to address something: indie publishing and self-publishing are two different things – one involves an independent press and the other involves the author him or herself acting as publisher. Both can be valid paths, but I’ve noticed these two things have started being used interchangeably, and yet they’re not synonyms.

Oh, I wish I had a crystal ball for the next ten years. What I can say is that while publishing will, of course, change. Agents and publishing houses will continue to be very relevant in promoting, selling, distributing, marketing and molding an author’s books and brand. I know that each year we’ve been in business, The Knight Agency has grown exponentially. In fact, one of the things I love about the agency is our innovation and constant market analysis so that we can be out ahead of the trends.

I've noticed that some well-known literary agents have started small press companies to help authors put out there backlisted book. Are you also interested in publishing?

The Knight Agency has a program just for our authors to facilitate publication of backlist, and select frontlist books. We take care of covers, formatting and promotion. The authors take care of blurbs and copyediting. It’s a collaborative effort, and we’ve seen very good results, like for Lauren Baratz-Logsted’s THE BRO MAGNET and Beth Cornelison’s TRUST IN ME.

Thanks so much Mrs. Diver for the interview! You're a Rockstar!

And for my readers, if you're interested in learning more about Mrs. Diver, please check out her awesome website HERE


  1. What a great interview! Great questions-great answers!

    Regarding indie authors and publishing, I'm glad you touched base on that. I always understood it the way you explained yet I see most people refer sp to indie.