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Ten Literary Agents Who Are Looking For New Authors
The Quest Continues
Your first step towards getting published has been completed. You have finished your book after months of writing, re-writing and editing. You are now ready for the next big step and that is finding a literary agent who will handle your manuscript. Of course you can attempt to find a publisher on your own, but your best bet is to hook onto an agent who has the necessary contacts in the literary world.
Who you know is very important in publishing and let’s face it, most first-time writers know very few people among the movers and shakers of this industry. Finding the right agent who already has established networks will save you a great many query letters to publishers who may or may not bother to read your work.
Listed below are ten agents who are looking for authors. Of course, armed with this list, the burden is still on you, the writer, to craft an excellent query letter that will capture the attention of these agents, but at least with this list you have a fighting chance of getting your foot in the door.
I have included contact information as well as the genre that each agent is interested in. You will also find submission tips for each agent.
- Common Query Letter Mistakes & How to Fix Them
Highlights some of the worst mistakes when it comes to writing an effective query letter with suggestions on how to fix them.
Ms. Bartholomew works for the Salkind Literary Agency in Great Neck, New York, and she can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
She is looking for general and high-quality commercial fiction, especially mystery, suspense, thriller and fantasy. In nonfiction she is interested in narrative pieces i.e. memoir, history, politics and social issues.
To contact, send an email query letter in the body of the email, as well as the first five pages of the book and a synopsis that explains the story. Also include a bio and any other publishing history you might have.
Laura runs the Bradford Literary Agency in San Diego, California. You can reach her at email@example.com.
Her fiction interests include all types of romance, romantic/erotica, women’s fiction, mystery, thriller and young adult. For nonfiction she is interested in most types including parenting, lifestyle, relationships, memoir, humor and pop culture.
For fiction, submit a synopsis and the first 30 pages in the body of the email. No attachments. For nonfiction send a proposal, outline, sample material, bio and competitive survey. Again, no attachments.
Dreisbach Literary Management is located in El Dorado Hills, California. You can reach Ms. Dreisbach by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In fiction she is interested in young adult, literary and commercial fiction and especially mystery and thriller. In nonfiction she will look at biographies, memoirs, true crime, business and economics, spirituality, Native American and parenting.
To contact, send a query, genre, word count, author info and synopsis. Also include the first five pages of the manuscript in the body of the email.
Kate is the owner of the Epstein Literary Agency in Randolph, Massachusetts. You can reach her at email@example.com.
Fiction interests are limited to young adult and middle grade. Nonfiction interests include crafts, fashion, health, humor, inspiration, journalism, lifestyle, humor, memoir, parenting, pets and pop culture.
Send a query by email and include the word “query” in the subject line. Also include the first three pages for all memoir and fiction submissions. As with all other agents, no attachments are accepted.
Mr. Getzler works for Russell & Volkening in New York, New York. You can reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
He is interested in fiction that includes mystery, thriller, literary and commercial fiction and young adult. He is not interested in nonfiction at this time.
Send an email query and the first five pages of your work pasted to the body of the email. Do not send a synopsis.
Michelle can be reached through the Martha Kaplan Agency in New York. Her email is email@example.com.
Her interests in fiction include young adult and middle grade. In nonfiction she will look at memoirs, women’s fiction, narrative history, psychology and women’s studies.
Send an email query letter as the first step. If she is interested she will request that you send more after the initial contact.
P.S. Humphrey is no longer taking on new projects....3/18/13
The Bible For Writers
Do You Have An Agent?
Ms. Kaffel works for the Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency in New York. You can reach her at Meredith@sll.com.
In fiction she is mainly interested in young adult and middle grade, but she will take a look at novels that “not only steal her heart, but complicate it.” In nonfiction she is interested in food, science, smart business, technology, feminism and cultural trends.
If you are submitting fiction, then send her a query letter and one-to-three chapters. For nonfiction send her a query and proposal.
Sandy works for the L. Perkins Agency in Riverdale, New York. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Her fictional interests include mystery, thriller, psychological horror, paranormal romance, young adult and historical fiction. She is also interested in steampunk, spy novels and Asian or Asian-American fiction. For nonfiction she focuses on history, biography, memoirs, science, pop culture, food and Asian nonfiction.
To contact, send an email query and include a brief synopsis, bio and first five pages in the body of the email.
Matthew words for Ralph M. Vicinanza, LTD in New York. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Fictional interests include commercial fiction, espionage, thrillers, debut fiction and writers with a unique voice. For nonfiction he will look at popular science, humor, narrative nonfiction, current events and pop culture.
To contact, send an email query with a quick synopsis and bio, and a writing sample attached as a Word document.
Ms. Spencer works for The Knight Agency in Madison, Georgia. You can reach her via email at Elaine.firstname.lastname@example.org.
For fiction she is interested in commercial literary, women’s fiction, romance, young adult and middle grade. For nonfiction she is only interested in pop culture.
To contact, send an email query and write “query” in the subject line. She will respond to all queries in up to two months time.
Good Luck to All
This is a tough business and as such it is nice to have an agent in your corner doing the in-fighting for you. A good agent is worth their weight in gold and just might mean some gold for you. They will present and sell your work to editors, negotiate contracts and make sure that you get paid. They understand the business, understand contracts and understand what editors are looking for.
I wish you well as you travel down the publishing road. It is a tough business to get established in, but the rewards are oh so satisfying. Do not give up! Believe in yourselves and keep moving forward, one step at a time.
2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)