August 30, 2006

Where, oh, where, oh, where, is my agent?

I’ve been researching and compiling a long list of agents over the last couple of years in my effort to find somebody to represent "Honest, the Martian Ate Your Dog". I still haven’t found representation, but I certainly have a pretty big list of agents which is not doing me much good till I finish my second novel and start querying them again :)

So, I thought, why not set up a page online which lists all these agents and publishers so that somebody else can benefit from my research as well? I originally wanted to add an export feature to WriteTrack (I keep agent information in WriteTrack, my submission management software) so that I could export the database to HTML. But the more I thought about it, the less efficient an HTML page seemed. It would be a long static list of agents/publishers which would take forever to load and would be hard to search.

So I began thinking about a way to quickly code up a nice little interface to access and manage the data and to even provide a way for users to give feedback on the agents/publishers. The first thing I thought of was – Adobe Flex. Basically, it’s a new development environment (as well as a suit of technologies) which uses Flash to provide a spiffy interface which is also extremely fast to design and develop. I had not used Flex before but I had been meaning to and after about a day of mucking around, I came up with this page.

The page works fine but it takes a little bit of time to load and needs Flash 9 to work. While I am happy enough with the interface for the moment, I am considering going the AJAX route and redoing the interface so that it loads even faster and doesn’t depend on third-party technology so much. Since the data will remain the same, you can continue to use this interface till I do something new which will hopefully have even more features and will work even better :)

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Tags: Coding, Software, Writing
Posted by Fahim at 7:05 am   Comments (2)