From Corwyn Alvarez, Author of The Dog Walker
This office has had many exciting triumphs with authors, but one of my very favorites was the day that we got a literary agent for talented fiction author Corwyn Alvarez. Here, in his own words, is the story, just after the one-year anniversary of the book’s publication.
When I came to the Office of Scholarly Publications (at that time the Office of Scholarly and Literary Publications) with my novel, The Dog Walker, in hand, Dr. Carole Sargent was pleasantly forthright with me in telling me that I shouldn’t hold my breath since she had never had a work of fiction picked up by an agent before. Not what I wanted to hear, but my life had been a chain of failures up until that time, so I figured that one more wouldn’t make much difference. It’s good that I didn’t hold my breath because an entire year went by and no agent.
At that point, I reconciled myself to the idea that I was not destined for any success as a writer. So I did what any desperate writer would do. I went to visit F. Scott Fitzgerald’s gravesite and in disgust threw my manuscript on his grave. As best I can remember, I did not offer Fitzgerald any prayers or perform any voodoo ceremony on his grave. The next day we got four feet of snow, which buried everything in sight including my manuscript on Fitzgerald’s grave. This seemed symbolically foreboding and I felt sure that the literary gods were sending me a message.
A few months later, it happened. Carole informed me that Mr. Don Fehr (literary agent) of Trident Media Group was interested in representing my book. Thanks to Don’s diligence, he eventually found a publisher who was willing to buy my manuscript and take a chance on an unknown novelist.
My novel was published in February 2012 and much has happened since that time. But to this day, I fondly remember that summer day I went to Carole’s Georgetown office and she greeted me warmly. That day marked my beginning as a writer (despite everything I had been through up to that point), and beginnings always have a magical quality to them that can never be repeated or supplanted…