I am originally from Serbia (living in Mexico for the past year) so English is not my primary language.
Non the less I have always preferred writing and reading in English.Do you think that is absolutely necessary for non-English speakers to get a proof-reader and a copy-editor before submitting to an agent?There are some financial struggles that make me question if I should start saving up money, before finishing the book.Since it is my first book and I never submitted my work to an agent, I really don't know how tolerant they are to writers who manage English as a second language.
It's not absolutely necessary, but you should.
English is a bitch of a language that delights in tormenting writers.
Things that make sense in English grammar are nuts.
If funds are limited, you may be able to find help from critique groups or beta readers.
But you should ALWAYS tell me that you're writing in your non-native language, no matter what.
When I get a query that has weird syntax, or odd mistakes, my first thought is the writer isn't skilled. It's NOT the writer is using her second (or third!) language.
It's in your best interest (and mine too!) to alert me to the fact you're following in the footsteps of Joseph Conrad, Aleksandar Hemon, Vladimir Nabokov, and Khaled Hosseini.