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Client Reviews and Testimonials
Our author’s submission service assists writers of poems, short stories, essays, and book manuscripts in getting their work published. We work very hard to promote our clients’ work. Letters from clients follow below. (Originals with signatures available upon request.)
Read third-party testimonials on LinkedIn.
April 27, 2018
Couldn’t be happier with this group of highly skilled industry professionals! I signed with an agent within weeks of joining Writer’s Relief. Top notch service and a virtual shoulder to lean on, when needed. Eve R.
January 8, 2018
From draft query and synopses to an offer of representation, Writer’s Relief smoothed the process and made it happen. Meg and Jill provided expert literary coaching as well as pinpoint targeting of appropriate agents specializing in literary fiction. Mary V.
August 16, 2017
Writer’s Relief has been very efficient and quick in their outreach to the agents. I’m pleasantly surprised! Jenafor R.
July 20, 2017
Writers Relief sent out queries that led to my agent, which led to my publisher. My novel will be released in August 2017. A story I wrote also recently won an award from Willow Review. Kathryn R.
March 3, 2017
Signed, sealed, delivered. I am beyond thrilled and so grateful to WR for all of their help. A special shout out to Jen for helping shepherd me through the maze of attracting the attention of, and then negotiating with, a literary agent.
To anyone on the fence about WR all I can say is that I couldn’t be happier with my results. I got both an agent and an offer from a publisher (not in that order) during my first round with WR!
February 21, 2017
Writer’s Relief has definitely led me to agents who appear to be well matched to my work, and that is what I most wanted. I am very glad you are helping me.
May 12, 2016
As I finished my second book, I decided I wanted to have it traditionally published. The first consideration was to find an agent. I contacted Writer’s Relief and they piloted me through their process, which included doing a query letter for me. They quickly understood the essence of the book and the letter captured the spirit of it.
They sent me a list of agents and I began the first cycle of correspondence with agents, expecting it to be a long process with many rejection letters. I was amazed and, of course, delighted when I found an agent within about two weeks. Now I am working with that agent toward getting a publisher. I am very appreciative to Writer’s Relief for narrowing the search for agents to the most appropriate to contact. I have recommended Writer’s Relief to many of my writer friends.
May 26, 2015
Dear Writer’s Relief,
You did a great job on the list. I got an offer from the first agent I queried (Jennifer Lyons)!
April 2, 2014
I’m a successful client in that you guys helped me find my agent, who helped me get my book published.
March 22, 2014
Dear Writer’s Relief:
I have an agent now and a publisher. You guys were so awesome in helping me get here (and I tell all my writing friends to use your service). Thank you for everything!
December 16, 2013
Writer’s Relief has made my writing life a whole lot easier. Although I’ve had six books published (including two novels and a short story collection), I needed an agent and I didn’t have a clue how to go about looking. I found the staff at Writer’s Relief friendly, helpful, encouraging, and very thorough in matching my credentials with the right people. As a result of their selection process, about six agents asked to see my manuscript, and one of them offered representation. While all this behind-the-scenes work went on, I revised an entirely different manuscript and got to work on a new project—something I couldn’t have done if I’d had to hunt for an agent on my own. So a big thank you from a grateful writer!
October 3, 2011
Writer’s Relief has been sensational all the way through the process of finding an agent for my first novel. From compiling a list of potential agents, to smoothing out the synopsis and query letter, to providing valuable input on the agent deal, Writer’s Relief has been professional, prompt, and above all, effective. I found a terrific agent in less than six months after I signed up with Writer’s Relief. The results speak for themselves.
January 13, 2011
What if you submitted your novel via Writer’s Relief (as I did) and got two offers of representation from respected NY literary agencies?
What if you signed a contract with one of them? What if you developed a terrific relationship and worked with your agent on polishing for submission to publishers? You would be smiling. (I am.)
August 10, 2010
I’ve been very happy with the services Writer’s Relief has provided. They’ve taken the time-consuming business of preparing and sending submissions off my shoulders and given me more time to do what I enjoy—write. My novel From Every Bitter Thing was submitted to about 25 agents and received offers of representation from three. The agent I chose to go with was an agent I would never have thought to send the manuscript to, if I had been doing my own submissions. I’ve also had a short story accepted by a literary journal, thanks to Writer’s Relief. Again, it was a reputable print journal, but not one that I had been aware of. I recommend Writer’s Relief to all serious writers.
June 25, 2010
When I began, I was unfamiliar with the publishing world. I had no idea how to go about finding an agent. Thanks to your company, the employee’s professionalism, know-how and personal support I have found an agent for my book, Charlemagne, the Stolen History, an excellent agent at that. The contract is signed!
It has been a pleasure. I will let you know when I have signed a contract with a publisher.
April 30, 2010
A special thanks to you and the other fabulous folks at Writer’s Relief who proofread my chapbook, Sex Education. You found several things that I and other readers and editors had not seen. I’ve entered all the edits on my copy of the chapbook. Please share this note of thanks with those who worked on the book. I love your proofing service.
April 16, 2010
I signed on as a full service client a few weeks ago in connection with my memoir, Pinstripes & Needles. I feel compelled to write and tell you about the extraordinary service your staff has provided. I have dealt with Meg, Wendy, Simone, Maria, Tawana, and Oby, and all have been models of professionalism and courtesy. Oby, in particular, has gone far beyond the call of duty in helping me craft a query letter, in formulating the best way to respond to an agent’s request for a complete manuscript when the query letter made it clear that the work is not complete yet, and in everything else she has done for me.
You are lucky to have such dedicated people working for you! If I ultimately obtain representation for my book, it will be in no small measure due to your awesome staff.
Just thought you should know.
February 1, 2010
To anyone considering joining Writer’s Relief, the numbers speak for themselves.
Two years ago I joined Writer’s Relief, and in that time I have had five stories published in credible, print literary journals, including The MacGuffin, Quiddity International Literary Journal, Williard & Maple, and Rio Grande Review.
And just recently, I have secured agent representation for my debut novel. In fact, I was able to have my pick between three agents who were all interested in my manuscript, and I ended up signing with the agency that had the most passionate vision for my novel.
Writer’s Relief lets you do the one thing you really want to do: write. They take care of the rest. They professionally proofread your work (a must-have for any serious writer). They research appropriate markets and agents that your work fits with. And they keep you motivated to never quit the marathon that is submitting, waiting, submitting, waiting…
If you take your writing seriously, then take your writing career seriously. Thank you very much to all the passionate, hard workers at Writer’s Relief. I can now call myself a professional writer, and for that I will forever be grateful.
December 22, 2009
I wish I’d checked out your service earlier. It occurred to me that I needed the very service you offer but didn’t know where to find it. It wasn’t until I mentioned in passing to Linda Simone at Manhattanville College that I really needed help in doing all the research and clerical work to get out queries for my manuscript. I told her I needed a pre-agent to help me find an agent, which is a big job. She suggested Writer’s Relief. You guys have been great. Your service is affordable and efficient, and while I haven’t gotten an agent yet, I’ve gotten out almost 60 queries and have gotten some nibbles. With your service I know that I am doing all I can to place my work and I am optimistic about the prospects. I hope to funnel more work though your service in the future. Writer’s Relief is like having your own office staff to help place your work.
August 24, 2009
I chose Writer’s Relief because your services were the most complete. You explained your process clearly and concisely in your communications with me via letter and telephone. The representatives I spoke with were polite and helpful (without any sales pressure). They even gave me a list of clients to interview, and I contacted several who were more than happy with results. Your work is even better than I had expected—professional, dependable, timely, and complete. Since signing on with Writer’s Relief, I’ve had several short stories published and with your guidance I’ve signed with a literary agency.
August 22, 2009
I am ecstatic with the service I’ve received from Writer’s Relief.
I hold MA and MFA degrees in creative writing, am the author of a children’s book and eight poetry collections and chapbooks, and have been publishing poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction in literary magazines since 1973. For a long time, I thought I knew everything I needed to know about connecting with editors and agents and marketing my work, but in 2008, with an unpublished book-length memoir on my computer, I decided maybe I needed some help after all and contacted Writer’s Relief. By mid-2009, thanks to you and your team, five excerpts from the memoir had been published or accepted for publication, and three agents were interested in the book. I recommend Writer’s Relief highly. Your staff members know what they’re doing and can really help.
Lucille L. D.
August 21, 2009
I came to Writer’s Relief with no history of publication, and one year later, we have secured representation for my novel. If not for Writer’s Relief, I wouldn’t have an agent right now. It’s as simple as that. You people are great, your edits are flawless, and the submission schedule is both efficient and effective. I am more than satisfied, I am impressed. Thank you, Ronnie and Writer’s Relief.
December 13, 2008
Dear Writer’s Relief,
Your team has been so encouraging over the last year. You inspired me to keep at it when the going was tough—that is vitally important. After I stopped submitting in September, I got a few final rejections, but one was handwritten and urged me to keep trying. It said—DON’T GIVE UP! So I decided, again, to give the British market one last go. I quickly changed my spelling and…tried two. One was a publishing firm in Kent, and they’ve accepted my novel! I still can’t believe it…And, it’s largely thanks to your encouragement and presentation! They’ve decided to call it Sweet Dreams and they hope to have it on the market early in the New Year.
September 20, 2008
Dear Writer’s Relief Staff:
I have received editorial and agent-procurement assistance from Writer’s Relief for about two years. The service has been very satisfactory in every respect. To me, personally, the proofreaders have been very helpful, especially Ms. Joi, who has shown exceptional editorial ability.
September 4, 2008
Dear Writer’s Relief Staff,
I write to express my thanks to Writer’s Relief for the great package that walked me through the preparation and mailings (yesterday and today) to the 30 agents. When the preparation was completed—the outline, book, synopsis, and query—it looked professional, and I have great joy and thanksgiving that Writer’s Relief taught me how to send out a state-of-the-art inquiry, at least that is the way I perceived the mailings. I am so very thankful.
A.S. Barnes (a la carte client)
June 14, 2008
Dear Ronnie and staff,
I just wanted to let you know how happy I am with Writer’s Relief.
The occasion is the receipt of four rejection letters, which would not normally be cause for celebration. Still, you have sent me material to prepare me for the number of rejections I’m about to receive, and I’ve been gratified by the personal nature of some of the responses. I recognize that publishing is a tough business, and that agents have to make difficult business decisions about what they feel enthusiastic for and what’s marketable.
Of the five rejections I’ve received so far, two bore indications that the synopsis and sample pages I sent were read and carefully considered. I feel I’m a strong writer, and to get a fair read of my materials is all I can ask for. I remain hopeful that the project will be picked up soon.
A couple of personal notes of my own: Simone has always been available for virtual hand-holding and to guide me through this process. As a “newbie,” I deeply appreciate that. Joi’s proofreading was spot-on. Over a long career, I’ve had my writing proofread hundreds of times, by many different editors, and I have to rank Joi’s work at or near the top.
Even though it’s early in the process and I’ve seen nothing but rejection—thanks to the preparations of you and the Writer’s Relief team—I feel I’m ready and that my work will get reviewed by agents who might want to see it. That’s much more than I had hoped for. I’m a happy client.
June 3, 2008
I want to summarize that my cover letter is dazzling! No, there’s no way that I could have captured EXACTLY what my book is about in so compelling a style. THIS is what I am paying for, what I believe my novel deserves. What I have been unable to give it in the year since it’s been finished. Now we’re on our way. Thank you!
April 22, 2008
Dear Ronnie and staff,
Thank you for your positive feedback and support. I was really okay with this (negative comment from an agent) because you guys have helped me publish so much. And because I do have that one nibble from a different agent.
I kept thinking what if I had just put that together without you at Writer’ Relief and hadn’t published pieces or done readings. It could have been devastating.
So I want to thank all of you guys again so much for the support you give me and I’m sure all your writers. When one gets a totally, terrible e-mail like that from an agent on a Sunday afternoon, you have to be really intact to brush it off (I think). And you guys have made me believe that I can transition from academic writing to my own personal kind of writing.
So hugs and many, many thanks all around, because you are so much more than a submission service. I can see that this is a tough process, and I am very glad not to be doing it without you.
Hugs all around,
April 6, 2008
Dear Friends at Writer’s Relief,
My name is Christina Harlin. I was a client of Writer’s Relief in 2003 and 2004, during which time your excellent service helped me submit 150 query letters with samples of my novels to literary agents. You also helped me track and catalog 148 rejection letters until suddenly I had a choice between two interested agents. I signed with a terrific agent who really believes in me. I am delighted to say that she and I have worked diligently together, and I, at last, have a book deal with Sourcebooks and a publication date set for September 2008, for my novel, My Boss is a Serial Killer: A Tale of Murder, Romance and Filing.
The road to publication has been an arduous one, but I never would have gotten there without the help of Writer’s Relief. Could I have managed 150 submissions on my own? I doubt it! Could I have survived 148 rejections without your service? I doubt that even more. But your supportive staff and streamlined system of submissions and response-tracking made it all seem like a business venture, taking the stress and pressure out of the equation. I hate to think of what I might have missed, had I given up after rejection number 147. Writer’s Relief made sure that didn’t happen. I give you my sincerest thanks and appreciation, plus an acknowledgment on my author Web site. I hope a lot more aspiring writers come your way.
February 3, 2008
Your service is an excellent tool for writers. I have contracted both of my novels with The Wild Rose Press. What a fascinating journey to begin in the middle of my life!
If it weren’t for the conversations with you and your staff, the rejections from my first round of submissions, and my subsequent passion to create the most gripping query letter I could, I don’t think I would have had two publishers to choose from and handwritten notes from literary agents encouraging me to keep on writing.
Writer’s Relief pushed my creativity up a notch. You forced me to represent my work in the best possible way. I will always be grateful for your input, and I would recommend your service to anyone who is serious about this craft.
I have no idea how many books I have left to write or how many books I will sell. That doesn’t matter. This is a personal success for me, and Writer’s Relief helped me achieve a goal that many only dream of attaining.
Thank you again!
Author of Retribution! and Consequences
Published by The Wild Rose Press
January 7, 2008
As an experienced writer and editor, I can recommend Writer’s Relief to both beginners in the publishing effort and those who have been fighting the battle for years. You have an excellent and well-vetted list of agents and also some healthy realism—I recently acquired an agent for a book with help from Writers Relief’s staff. It took a lot of queries, as you warned me it would, but you were there through the whole process whenever I had questions or concerns. In 50 years of writing, editing, publishing, and running a journalism school, I’ve developed some skepticism—but I have nothing but good things to say about the folks at Writer’s Relief. You’re good people.
December 7, 2007
Dear Writer’s Relief Team,
I received my submission materials two days ago (they’ll be in the outgoing mail tonight), and I had to write and say how thoroughly impressed I am with the company and the great service you provide.
Every step has been utterly professional and well-executed. The value you deliver is WELL worth the fee.
Thanks in advance. Who knows if my novel will ever be published? But I’m 100% certain you’ve helped to increase the odds many times over.
FYI—I also have a great nonfiction proposal I’m planning to get your help with next year.
Thanks again, and happy holidays to all of you.
October 23, 2007
Many thanks to you and to your staff for helping me to secure an agent to represent my nonfiction book proposal. I’m a first-time author and really value the practical advice I received while shaping my material for submission. The list of agents you provided was also obviously on the money since I received two offers of representation from my very first round of submissions.
All in all, it was a professional and worthwhile experience working with the team at Writer’s Relief.
October 19, 2007
As a rather prolific poet, and as someone with a hectic work schedule, the submission process is something I have traditionally dreaded. Let’s face it, writers have three jobs: 1) to write, 2) to make a living, and 3) to promote and submit his/her writing. Yikes! Where does one find time to live? That’s where Writer’s Relief comes in. Not only does this group of smart, professional, and extremely supportive team alleviate the writer’s submission headaches, but they also act as a kind of safety net.
Typically a poet sends work into the world solo. The responses range from respectful to rude to bewildering. Dealing with editors’ responses, or lack thereof, is one of the many things that Writer’s Relief helps with. As a result, I have managed to get about 30 poems published in one year alone, and many of the journals are upper-echelon.
In addition to being a poet, I have written a memoir. Approaching agents is terra incognita to me. As such, the process is terrifying. Sadly, I have tried this on my own; and because I really didn’t know what I was doing, I failed miserably. In contrast, after having my query letter, synopsis, and sample chapters edited meticulously by Writer’s Relief, and after having appropriate agents chosen for me, I managed to get the interest of four agents in merely two weeks. Although I am not a wealthy person, I have come to think of the money I spend on Writer’s Relief as a crucial investment in my future.
Lastly, let me not forget to add how incredibly warm, smart, and personable the staff is. Thanks to all of you!
August 7, 2007
To Ronnie Smith:
I know my strengths and weaknesses, and getting my writing out there for the right people to review in a regular and organized fashion, as well as making sure that it isn’t filled with typos and format problems, is among the latter. Writer’s Relief is superb at both, and their very competent, supportive, and pleasant staff makes the whole experience not only painless, but—despite the frequent rejection letters—actually enjoyable.
August 1, 2007
I’ve been singing your praises from the beginning.
I think what you do is invaluable to the writer and the reason you have so much success is not luck, but a result of the hard work you put into researching potential agents and knowing when they will read. I got very quick responses to all of my packets. Some, it almost seemed, came by return mail.
Everyone that I have dealt with in your company has been courteous and a delight to talk to. I am not an easy client. I raise Labrador Retrievers and have 31 pups at the moment. I also run two other small businesses, and I have been handling my mother’s poetry through Writer’s Relief. She, too, was successful on the first mailing and had two poems published in different literary journals. Once again, I know that was due to your targeting abilities. But, as I said, I am wearing so many hats that often I have been late and didn’t follow directions. The Writer’s Relief staff was always patient and firm at the same time about deadlines. It is good practice [for the writer] for what lies ahead once an agent is secured.
In my busy life I just don’t have time to research which agents might be good for my work. Also, people move around and change so much in this business so I can never be sure if my submissions are going to an active agency. I certainly do not know who is reading and when.
Thank you Writer’s Relief!! This never would have happened without you.
All the best,
May 17, 2007
I cannot say enough about the wonderful care and guidance I received at Writer’s Relief. The staff is always professional, and they made the process of sending out my manuscript easy (even fun). From the very beginning I knew that I was in competent hands. All paperwork was well-organized, and directions for submitting packets and recording agent responses were clear. Any time I had a question, I simply called and spoke to my knowledgeable contact person, Barbara.
In addition to helping me ready my manuscript for submission, Writer’s Relief also effectively targeted appropriate agents. This can be a monumental task as anybody who’s ever looked through Writer’s Market knows; yet each time I sent out my manuscript, I secured an agent. (I sent it out twice because my first agent retired before we were able to find a publisher.)
All in all, I would say that my experience with Writer’s Relief has been excellent. I would highly recommend that anyone who wants the burden of finding an agent lifted or lightened, try Writer’s Relief. It certainly worked for me!
March 2, 2007
I have just secured wonderful agent representation in NYC. I am a Fulbright fellow (seven times) and a professor emeritus.
Writer’s Relief has been the sterling guide behind my writing career.
For ten years my work has found representation and publication because of this fabulous organization led by Ronnie.
February 28, 2007
I had spent four years writing my first novel Nantucket Sleigh Ride. I had never written anything longer than a college paper in my life. When I thought it was ready, I searched the Internet and “stumbled” on to Writer’s Relief. I found good information on the business of book publishing and getting agent representation. My ignorance level was high. I called you up to inquire what SASE meant, and you graciously answered.
The requirement to submit a sample of my work to Writer’s Relief and when you took me on as a client were turning points for me. For the first time my work was validated by someone else besides friends and family.
My first submission bundle went out in January 2006 and I secured representation in May 2006. I did double submissions the entire time. I had three agents request a full manuscript and one agreed to work with me Theron Raines.
Then the real work began. The novel became 50 percent longer and, working through the summer and fall, we polished it up, and it is out to publishers now. I await their decision while working away on my next novel.
February 1, 2007
Dear Writer’s Relief:
While I am deeply ensconced in a new novel that has already been receiving interest from publishing houses, I wanted to tell your readership that I still have a completed novel out there and under consideration after using your service’s immeasurable and meticulous help.
I was certain that the novel was “dead.” With your excellent guidance, databases and sound advice, I created a blind submission package that, on the first 29 letters, received four responses from major agents asking to see the whole novel. Subsequently, on the second round of submissions, there were two more—still in the consideration process.
What I deduced from my experience with Writer’s Relief was that the end result of using your service was equal in time and effort to the efforts and time involved is using personal and/or previous contacts. (I have had three previous agents who took forever to respond.)
While my experience in the past has been both easy and hard—two earlier novels were accepted by pub houses but were derailed in business debacles—, this era demands that writers submit and submit and submit. You have proven to me that if I have a good sample package, I will not be lost in the agent-finding process. I may not get any further than a request to read my entire manuscript, but it shows that many agents do read what is sent to them—perhaps it takes a long time, but so does the writing. Perhaps some of them have silly response mechanisms: One sent a rejection the size of a fortune cookie’s message and another suggested I read more about their agency. In general…expedient and effective.
Thank you for making the process of sending out and getting back the package merely “white noise,” while the real activity is taking place in the present—in today’s writing. Having been the editor of a literary magazine for five years, many years ago, I want writers to know that when a pile of mail two-feet high lands on your desk, it takes a long time to go through, and sometimes, at the end of the day, you just can’t absorb one more word.
Keep trying, writers! Keep trying. That’s the only way to break through the sound barrier.
January 11, 2007
I hired Writer’s Relief before I ever looked for an agent or published a book. Writer’s Relief explained the process, identified my likeliest prospects, and did all the dirty work of organizing my search. Without their efficient, professional help, I might still be shopping around for representation.
December 16, 2006
I got an agent!!! Just wanted you to know. I signed the contract today. Hallelujah!
Ronnie, you had warned me in your first letter that finding an agent for a memoir (when you’re not famous, which I’m not) would be close to impossible, but encouraged me to try. Well, Folio, the agency I signed with, was about the 56th agency on the list that I queried, so it took some determination. Writer’s Relief services were great—you really kept me on task.
So, THANK YOU!! I couldn’t have done it without you.
August 3, 2006
I was very impressed with how Writer’s Relief handled my work. After years of struggling with an agent who sent out a weak package, you motivated me to get my act together. I left my agent and chose to start all over again. I was skeptical.
Between your expert database, your organization, proofreading, and minor editing, I had three positive agents responses in the first 29 cold call letters to agents. Two agents wound up requesting the whole manuscript immediately.
Who says you have to know someone to get them to read your letter? I used to think that, and I knew lots of contacts to agents, but Writer’s Relief streamlined the process. I will keep plugging away because of this foundation.
June 22, 2006
Writer’s Relief does a great job of helping a writer to get published. During the time I used their services, I had five short stories accepted for publication. I also had an agent at a top literary agency agree to represent my fiction novel. Writer’s Relief was instrumental in achieving these goals. If you’re serious about your writing, and serious about your literary ambition, you should give these people a try. I think any real writer would trade the money I spent for the result I received.
March 31, 2006
You continue to offer the most remarkable services to writers. My own personal and professional experience notwithstanding, the breadth of your commitment is stunning. For me, as a longtime working professional writer who has successfully supported himself and his family through writing, there were still things I needed to do, personal projects I hoped to realize. You did it for me, helped me move into writing, which means everything to me. I now have a terrific well-established agent who has a novel of mine out to publishers. I have another manuscript about to go to my agent, and yet another in the wings, but it’s the direction you all gave me which set not only the tone but the standard. And then to be able to get your regular incredibly informative and supportive E-mailings about the life of writing reminds me that we’re all still growing and developing. Which is as it should be.
My warm best wishes,
August 4, 2005
I have been writing for 15 years and had arrived at the point of believing I would never get the break all writers desire. With no college education, the only thing I had to hold onto for assurance that I really was a writer was my love for writing. I would send submissions to publisher after publisher, agent after agent, and what felt like hundreds of rejections (but was in reality only six or seven) would slowly appear in my mailbox.
When I approached Writer’s Relief, I was very hesitant, as there are so many con artists out there today. But the staff at Writer’s Relief immediately put me at ease with their professionalism. If I had a question, all I had to do was call. When using the services of Writer’s Relief to send submissions, the rejections were so much easier to take. It seemed there wasn’t near the blood, sweat, and tears put into the queries as there had been before. The stress of getting everything “just right” was gone. The stress of searching and giving up valuable time disappeared. Writer’s Relief took that stress from me and made responses so much easier to take.
Now, just three months after hiring Writer’s Relief, I have an agent, a contract for two books, and I am on my way. The best part of all of this is knowing Writer’s Relief is still there to help me through.
I highly recommend Writer’s Relief and will continue to use your services.
July 29, 2005
Dear Ronnie and all the staff at Writer’s Relief,
I am so pleased to have just signed a contract with a New York agent to represent me. Having already been through the writing and publishing process before, I can attest to the wonderful service you provided me throughout this process. It is hard to believe that in a few short months my manuscript was edited, my query letter prepared, and nearly 60 targeted agents received my packet. Even the rejection letters were often supportive, encouraging, and instructive. Instead of dreading the prospect of selling my work, you and your team have structured a wonderful and simple way to get it done.
June 21, 2005
Thank you so very much for the wonderful services you rendered to me, through which I have secured agent representation for my first novel. I’m looking forward to sending you more work as soon as it is ready.
June 17, 2005
I am pleased and honored to write about your wonderful resource, Writer’s Relief. As you know, I have been involved with Writer’s Relief for quite a few years. Over this time, I have gone from writing poetry to articles, to short stories and novels. What has really impressed me, among many things, is the way your staff has quickly and effortlessly adapted to my ever-changing needs.
My poetry has been published in more than 30 literary journals. I have had the great pleasure of seeing a short story published, and I feel that if it were not for your focus and constant organization of my work, then I would have never succeeded in either format.
Now, my biggest challenge has been to get my novel published. As usual, your leadership in selecting just the right literary agents has resulted in me getting one of my very own. When I needed to understand what was acceptable in dealing with the agency, and also the revisions, you have been there for me with very important guidelines and advice.
I cannot stress how much you have helped me focus on the creative work, instead of the nuts and bolts aspects of getting published. And, of course, your packets that come to me like clockwork insure that I don’t get lazy, and that I keep writing.
I have spoken of your many charms to so many writers. Writer’s Relief is a vital and fabulous tool for me, and for any writer who actually wants to see his/her work in print. Thank you, as always, for helping me stick with my dream.
June 7, 2005
Dear Ronnie, Barbara, everyone else at Writer’s Relief,
In September 2001, two years after reviving an interest in writing that dated back to my early teens, I reached a turning point. I had made up my mind to write, but I also wanted to see my work published. I realistically weighed the amount of time I could devote to writing versus work and family responsibilities and concluded that if I wanted to be a published writer, I was going to have to reach out for help. That’s how I found Writer’s Relief.
In the four years I have been a Writer’s Relief client, I have grown from a writer with two short stories and a half completed first-draft novel to a published writer with nine stories, a poem in print, and two novels that have circulated among agents. I credit Writer’s Relief with being a working partner in my writing career. Its dedicated editors and marketing professionals have guided my work to magazines that want my stories. They have helped me place a top-notch edited and formatted manuscript in front of an agent.
Writer’s Relief’s two-month writing and submission schedule has transformed me from a writer with vague goals and an uncertain plan for achieving them to a writer with the discipline to write, rewrite, and meet deadlines. With Writer’s Relief’s help, I have managed to map out a year’s worth of writing goals and then stick to it.
Writer’s Relief’s wide array of fiction submission options has prompted me to explore poetry and short fiction—a writing style that landed one of my stories in two publications.
Writer’s Relief edited and formatted my manuscript so that I was ready to deliver my work in the most professional form possible when an agent responded favorably to the query letter and synopsis Writer’s Relief help me craft. Thanks to WR’s skill in aiding me in agent queries, I have landed an agent who is preparing to submit my novel to publishers.
I think I’m probably like every writer when I admit to fantasizing about scribbling words down on paper, mailing them to an agent or publisher, and receiving an adoring call begging me to produce more golden pages.
The reality, as every working writer knows, is that growing as a writer means writing on a regular schedule, reading voraciously, and gratefully receiving the support of quality editing and marketing professionals. As far as I’m concerned, those pros work for Writer’s Relief.
Sincerely and with grateful appreciation,
February 15, 2005
Dear Friends at Writer’s Relief,
When I, a life-long writer, finally admitted that publishing companies were not going to cold-call me because they were desperately short of material, I decided I had to make a move and get my work out there. I didn’t want to reach middle age and realize that I’d never given it an earnest try. I buckled down to query agents, but the process was disheartening and overwhelming, particularly since everything indicated that my chances of getting an agent to even see my material were slim. I had no good feel for what agents were appropriate. And I definitely didn’t have enough time to do really good investigation or solicitation for myself. Then in an on-line search for agencies, I ran across the Writer’s Relief website, and knew that this was the answer to my problem.
Thanks to Writer’s Relief’s invaluable assistance and above-and-beyond support, I was able to overcome two major obstacles: my own inertia and my “rejection-slip shock” (as Peanuts’ Snoopy used to call it). In just one cycle, you got my work out to thirty agents—more than I’d done in my whole life. Even when my queries were returned with “no thank you” on them, it still felt like a step in the right direction. I discovered to my surprise that having submissions turned down still makes you feel like a real and serious writer.
It didn’t happen overnight, but at last my work fell into the right hands, and now I am signed with a reputable and productive literary agency. Last week I heard myself say the most amazing sentence: “I need to mail a package to my agent.” It took me an hour to get the grin off my face! Actual publication hasn’t yet happened, but I’ve gotten further now than I ever would have with my writing languishing on dusty CD-ROMS, and instead of a daydream, it’s now a real possibility. I highly recommend your genuinely useful service to writers of all types, but particularly to any writing-wallflowers like myself, who need a little help in the nerve department. Writer’s Relief always made me feel that acceptance was just around the corner.
Yours very gratefully,
November 15, 2004
I honestly believe that without Writer’s Relief, I would not have been able to locate an agent to represent my novel(s) as quickly as I did or perhaps at all. The fact that I could contact 29 people at once, and within two such queries found a reputable and enthusiastic agent, has reassured me that all the time I have spent writing was well worth it. As you know, I have won two Bright Hill Press Fiction Awards for chapbooks, which were really excerpts from my novels; I have been a finalist in two major university fiction contests; and I have had two other excerpts anthologized. I love to write, and it is what I do well. The business end—studying markets, isolating potential agents, writing the cover letters—has been harder for me to do because when I have time, I write. Thank you for supporting my work by doing the business end for me at a reasonable rate. Thank you for getting my work out to people who take it seriously. In my personal life, I have been blessed with a wonderful husband and a remarkable daughter. Now, I have been blessed again with an agent who loves my book. I believe that Writer’s Relief was instrumental in this accomplishment.
September 8, 2004
I have been delighted with the results of working with Writer’s Relief. Although I have a number of nonfiction books to my credit—including a couple for the general reader, like “Treasures Of Canada” and “The Promise Of The West,” working in fiction was new to me. I had done a small amount of work trying to find representation, but nothing like the planned program I followed with you. And I had done nothing about trying to find homes for my short stories.
To find an agent for my novel in the first cycle of submissions was enormously fortunate. I not only thank you for your help in achieving that, but also for the unfailing friendly interaction I found with the people at Writer’s Relief. I would never have devoted as much time and doggedness to this as you do for me. I hope soon to be able to tell you that the novel has found a publisher.
Thanks for everything, and best regards,
June 17, 2004
I have found your service to be very professional and organized. I have also gotten one acceptance so far to a literary magazine, Iron Horse Literary Review, as well as two agents interested in seeing my entire novel manuscript.
It is wonderful to be able to send my stories to you and to know that they will get sent out! Thank you so much for your service.
December 15, 2003
My book manuscript would never have happened except for your encouragement, deadlines, marketing and tracking of these stories to journals. So, thank you again for all you do for this struggling writer!
October 15, 2003
Writer’s Relief has been wonderful for me. An unorganized writer, without the courage to give up my day job, I was hopeless at sending my badly typed and edited manuscripts to agents. Everything seemed to take so long. Writer’s Relief picked me up, organized me, copy-edited my first chapters, revamped my formerly unprofessional query letter, found the right agents to query, and voilà—I found one. I could never have done this on my own and am very grateful. The staff of Writer’s Relief is professional, efficient, and caring. How could you invent a better organization?
October 4, 2002
Writer’s Relief sent out my book to thirty agents, and I got twenty-nine rejections and that magic call. “Mrs. White, this is XXX. I stayed up all night reading your book.” I would not have found my great agent, who has found me a great publisher, without Writer’s Relief.
September 13, 2002
Writer’s Relief has changed my life. In trying to find an agent for my novel, I spent hours researching, more hours calling, and days photocopying, writing cover letters, and proofreading. In two years I made approximately thirty submissions.
Writer’s Relief made thirty submissions for me the first month! This not only freed up my time and my mind but I found that I stopped feeling that little stab of pain and disappointment every time an SASE arrived in the mail. I discovered that when rejections came in waves of ten, twenty, or thirty, I actually looked forward to those self-addressed envelopes because that meant I was one step closer to finding an agent. One more person had read my work and sent me a letter. As a bonus, sometimes those rejection letters were thoughtful, positive, and encouraging. Even when they weren’t, I now had some action to take when a rejection letter arrived that didn’t involve chocolate! I could fax that response to you, Barbara, and the staff and know that we were working as a team. I was no longer a lone writer sitting in my studio being disrespected by the literary world!
Writer’s Relief kept well-organized records of all responses, especially noting those with a personal comment attached. Then I got that call. An agent who had declined representation for the book actually passed it on to one of his colleagues whom he felt was a better fit for my work. She loved it. I now have a wonderful agent who loves my work and is enthusiastically working to build my career. Without Writer’s Relief, I would never have persisted and turned my nos into yeses.
I am deeply grateful for your presence in my life.
August 16, 2002
Perhaps experience of other delighted authors has given you some idea of how incredibly thrilled I am at having found representation for my novel.
It is nothing less than the truth to say that “I couldn’t have done it without you.” YOU were the one who came up with the magic name and address, after all.
In addition, credit where credit is due: the agent (MY agent!) told me that they were initially very impressed by my cover letter and that they very often don’t even read a proposal or sample pages because they can tell from the cover letter that the author is “not suitable.”
In my own case, I love writing and hate the submission process. It gives me nervous diarrhea, and it’s incredibly time-consuming. You took most of the hassle out of it.
And, an unexpected plus, the many, many rejections I received before striking pay dirt were made easier to take because I could regard them not as JUST rejections but as assignments: “Right I have to fax this to Ronnie.” That really helped me deal with being turned down so many times.
And, of course, you and your colleagues were uniformly kind and supportive throughout the whole process. I can’t thank you enough!
All the best,
May 30, 2002
With Writer’s Relief’s help, I have published six short stories and secured an agent for my children’s book. Your staff is unfailingly courteous and helpful. They are honest professionals whose advice has made a huge difference in my marketing efforts. I strongly recommend your services.
March 12, 2002
Dear Ronnie Smith:
When I decided to use your submission service, I’d been trying for a year to find a agent for my novel, RECOVERY. Actually, I hadn’t been trying very hard. I’d submitted two batches of query letters, for a total of about two dozen. I’d become a little discouraged and decided to use Writer’s Relief mainly as a way to keep going. I’d also started to run out of ideas of likely agents using the methods suggested by most books about finding an agent.
Although it’s taken a while, the agent I found was in the first batch of 30 queries I sent out with the guidance of Writer’s Relief. I did only one more round of submissions, because by that time the agent I’ve since retained had asked for the entire manuscript.
Needless to say, I’m happy with your service because it did for me exactly what I wanted it to do, helped me to find an agent for my novel. Of course she still has to find me a publisher, but I feel a lot closer to that goal now than I did eight months ago. Thank you for helping me to get there.
February 25, 2002
Writer’s Relief has made a major impact on my career as a writer. I have gotten representation from three top literary agents (one for my novel, two for my plays—in NYC and in London). I have also gotten two short stories and ten poems and two plays published. Without Writer’s Relief much of my work would be in the attic drawer or on my laptop. Thanks Writer’s Relief for launching my career. Long may you prosper.
May 30, 2001
I wanted to write and express my appreciation for the excellent support you and your staff have provided during the last two plus years. When we started out, my fiction had never been published anywhere. Since working with you, my short stories and poems have (or are scheduled to) appear in eleven publications, including The MacGuffin, The Licking River Review, Inkwell, and Pangolin Papers.
But the last thing I am most excited about is during the time I’ve been your client, I wrote my first novel and signed with a literary agent. There is no doubt in my mind that without your guidance and the excellent query package you and the team at Writer’s Relief helped prepare, this first-time novelist would still be searching for someone to represent my book. For that matter, I might still be writing my book.
Instead, of the first thirty agents who received the query package for Bonita Rain, four requested the full manuscript, and two who received it both wanted to represent my book.
Writer’s Relief prepared a mailing list of reputable agents. You gave me excellent advice in drafting the cover letter and the synopsis, and you helped me work through which chapters to include in the package. Your team created a meticulously-proofed document that was completely professional in appearance and conformed to literary agents’ standards. You helped me understand the reasonable odds of a first-timer finding an agent without getting discouraged.
These were all things I had come to expect from our work together on my short stories and poems, but what I didn’t fully appreciate until we got into the agent process, was the “know-how” that you have in securing book representation. I especially benefited from having you as a sounding board during the time I was determining which agent would be the best for me.
Writing is a tough business to break into, and a beginning novelist needs luck. I was lucky finding an agent for Bonita Rain so quickly, but I think my luck really started when I became a client of Writer’s Relief.
Thanks for your honesty, excellent support, and the professional way you and your team provide service.
M. J. G.
May 2, 2001
Dear Ronnie and Staff,
I’d like to thank all of you at Writer’s Relief for your help in securing agent representation for my novel, Gothic Romance. From the first round of submissions, I received one request from an agency to read the entire manuscript, and a referral which led to the agent who loved my book. From the second round of submissions, I received two enthusiastic responses to the manuscript. The best thing about using Writer’s Relief, aside from the fact that it helped me achieve my goal of finding an agent, was that I am no longer bothered by rejection letters or take them so personally. The sheer number of queries I was able to send out because of Writer’s Relief was like compressing years of my own submission efforts into weeks.
The staff of Writer’s Relief was readily available when I had questions or concerns, and the editing and manuscript services provided were always professionally done, well organized, and timely. I recommend Writer’s Relief to any serious aspiring writer.
Thank you, Writer’s Relief!
March 1, 2000
Ronnie L. Smith, President
Writer’s Relief, Inc.
Dear Ronnie and Associates:
As you know, I have recently signed with a prominent New York literary agency to represent a memoir I am co-authoring. My partner has been a producer on radio projects that I have written. I write now for television and film and am active in the Writers Guild of America and Women in Film. This is our first non-fiction collaboration. So, although we are Hollywood professionals with long careers, we did not know how to target agents and editors for this market.
While a fellow at The Ragdale Foundation artist colony in Lake Forest, Illinois, I heard about Writer’s Relief, and I am greatly relieved that I did. In the very first round of submissions, we were offered representation. True, our proposal was strong, but I credit Writer’s Relief with getting our book to a carefully-selected list of agents.
Your editing and record-keeping services have been equally helpful. Many thanks, and we’ll keep you informed of our book’s progress. We have already recommended Writer’s Relief to other authors.
February 14, 2000
Ronnie L. Smith
Writer’s Relief, Inc.
Dear Ms. Smith:
After ten query submissions on my part, all of which were answered with impersonal form-letter rejections addressing me as “Dear Author” (initially I thought they were misspelling Arthur) and telling me how much they liked my work, which they had not seen, because only my query letter asking if they would like to see something had been sent, I learned of and contracted with Writer’s Relief. This letter is in part to inform you that I have just received an acceptance to represent me by a literary agency with the first set of submissions prepared by your staff, which at your suggestion included the unsolicited first story of the fiction collection.
This letter is also intended to serve as a recommendation of Writer’s Relief to other unagented writers, and as a thank-you to you and your staff. Your organization has been professional to the utmost in its advice on the nitty-gritty of such things as the synopsis (my understanding was that for fiction, twenty pages was the usual; you said two), the font and format to use, and even to telling me up front what I didn’t wish to hear; that it’s extremely difficult to gain agent representation for fiction by an unpublished writer. The next step will be for the agent to succeed, of course, but in the meantime, because of your help, I have time to write more stories, and I am immensely grateful to you.
July 28, 1999
Ronnie Smith, President
Many thanks to you and your staff for helping me find a literary agent to represent my first novel. I’m very pleased, particularly because the agency has represented writers whom I greatly admire, including Joyce Carol Oates and Annie Dillard. Also, I’m struck by the importance of sticking with the submission process, since we had about 40 rejections before this acceptance.
Fortunately, the contract I’ve negotiated allows me to continue working with Writer’s Relief for the submission of my short fiction and essays. I’m happy about this too. So far, you’ve helped me find publication for three short pieces, which I’m sure helped get the attention of this literary agent.
In any case, I look forward to continuing to work with you. Thanks again.
October 22, 1998
Ronnie L. Smith, President
I am impressed by Writer’s Relief’s exacting professionalism, tracking, and competence. They have saved me hours of proofing and the long process of submission. I am excited about having Writer’s Relief on my team. Because of their editorial skills and tracking, I have two poems accepted for publication, this year. As well, they have edited my current novel, submitted my query letter to agents, and as a result, I have contracted with a New York agent.
I will continue to submit poetry, and other projects this coming year. Every writer needs this service. It makes room for writing.
They are the best,
July 26, 1997
Ronnie L. Smith, President
Writer’s Relief, Inc.
Dear Ronnie Smith:
After your competent efforts, I secured an excellent agent in Los Angeles, who has called me several times, and is truly trying to obtain publication for a first novel by an older man.
I used your services, since I was getting on in age, and although I was quite well published in poetry, and had two plays produced, my professional commitments did not allow me to do the kind of work which you have done. One basically pays for service to free one’s self for other work involving either further writing or making of income in other areas.
Utilizing your service obviously does not guarantee the finding of an agent, since I did get many, many rejections—but my good luck has given me more hope and encouragement, and thereby, anyone who uses your service will recognize that their money is well spent, and that you are doing your best to obtain a contact in this very fickle and competitive publishing industry.
I’ve found your service to be very professional and committed to the individual person. Thank you very much.
February 3, 1997
Ronnie L. Smith
Please accept my apology in not keeping you up to date on the status of negotiations concerning my book contract with W.W. Norton & Company (New York & London). Thanks to your outstanding efforts in guiding me through the entire submission process of (1) editing the initial book proposal package and (2) matching the latter with an appropriate New York literary agent who was eager to take me on as a client—all has gone well. Norton has bought the book with all being signed, sealed and delivered.
More to the point, however, you should know how much I appreciate your hard work. I cannot believe that it was only a few years ago when I became one of your poetry clients. At that time, I did not have a single publishing credit to my name. Since then, you have been essential in guiding me through the literary marketplace where I have become (to my own astonishment) a variously published poet and, now, soon-to-be published author of my first book.
September 27, 1996
Ronnie Smith, President
I’ve been a publishing writer for fifteen years. During that time, I’ve had poems and stories and essays published in some of the best lit mags in the country (and some of the not-so-best), received fellowships from the Ohio Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, and had two books of poetry published; my credentials as someone who has done a lot of submitting on her own are all too well established. When it came to finding an agent for my first novel, though, I found it much more difficult. Many directory listings are outdated before the book hits the press, I found, and the packages—with sample chapters, plot synopsis, bio, publication lists—much more time-consuming to assemble.
I realized that it would probably be cost-effective to try your service. What I didn’t realize was that you would do it far better than I with more alacrity, more targeted submissions, and much more patience. I also didn’t realize, but soon found, that when I called, you would take the time to talk with me, advise, and respond to questions. As you know, during the second billing cycle that I was with you, two agents offered me representation.
I can’t thank you enough for your competence and your swift response to every request. I happily and without reservation recommend Writer’s Relief to any writer who, like myself, wants to immerse him/herself in her work and not in the work of submissions. It’s also awfully nice to feel that one has, indeed, a friend out there.