You need an agent.
I am not talking about James Bond or the kind that Johnny Rivers sings about. I am talking about an even cooler agent. I am referring to a book agent.
Why do you need an agent? Because there are slush piles in publishing house, and you do not want your manuscript lost in one of them. Basically, you have a whole lot of competition, and you want to make sure you stand out and your writing actually gets read.
Let's use The Bachelor as an analogy. But, instead of the dopey contestants with weird job titles (I mean, a healer? What is this? A weird fantasy novel?), you are one among twenty-four other equally beautiful, intelligent, and charming women. And, instead of competing for a basic dude like Ben Higgins, you are competing for someone who is actually attractive, like Captain Thorne from The Lunar Chronicles (I am only on Cress, so no spoilers people!). What would get you closer to your swashbuckling sweetheart? Just waiting there and hoping to get a rose?!
What would help is if you had an inside connection. Like Chris Harrison. If he turned to Captain Thorne and said, "You should pick this girl because she is awesome, smart, beautiful, and funny," you would bet your chances of getting a rose would be exponentially higher.
That is kind of what an agent does for you. The agent makes sure that your book gets pulled out of the Slush Pile of Doom, and it gets across the appropriate people's desks. It gives you a fighting chance of getting a rose, err, contract and flying off to interplanetary bliss.
Don't know where to begin? Fortunately, I have your back. Sign up for my newsletter on the little box to the right to get a list of ten agents who can help your novel find the publishing house of its dreams.