PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These one-on-one meetings at the 2019 Philadelphia Writing Workshop are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind. More 2019 agents to be announced as they are confirmed. You can sign up for pitches at any time, or switch pitches at any time, so long as the agent in question still has appointments open.
Eric Smith [SOLD OUT OF PITCH APPOINTMENTS] is a literary agent with P.S. Literary. Eric is eagerly acquiring fiction and nonfiction projects. He’s actively seeking out new, diverse voices in young adult (particularly sci-fi and fantasy), new adult, and literary and commercial fiction (again, loves sci-fi and fantasy, but also thrillers and mysteries). In terms of nonfiction, he’s interested in cookbooks, pop culture, humor, essay collections, and blog to book ideas. Learn more about Eric here.
Leah Pierre is a literary agent with Ladderbird Literary. She is seeking: “I am looking for diverse and unique work that is faced paced, that I will not be able to put down, and will leave me on the edge of my seat. As much as I pretend to hate them, I do love a good plot twist and a shocking ending. I love stories with a complex cast of characters and I am a sucker for camaraderie, banter, and the tight-knit, family-like group of friends trope.” Adult novels: romance (ideally interracial), fantasy with elements of myth and legends, historical fantasy/fiction, social-justice-inspired espionage/heist. New adult novels: romance, coming-of-age, finding one’s identity, F/F friendship, the college experience as well as the post-college experience. Young adult novels: Fantasy with elements of myth and legend (lesser know myths/legends i.e. Middle Eastern), Meet-Cute/Coming-of-age that involves romance and self-discovery/self-love, Contemporary, realistic and raw family-centered novels, mysteries and thrillers (unreliable narrators are okay), fairy-tale retellings, and a good heist concept. “A lot of what I am looking for does overlap, so please use your best judgement when submitting. If you’re not sure, give it a try.” Learn more about Leah here.
Julie Matysik is the editorial director for Running Press Kids. Prior to working at Running Press, Julie was the editorial director of Sky Pony Press, the children’s imprint at Skyhorse Publishing, which she helped found. She is seeking the follow categories/genres: board books (stand alone and series); picture books (including nonfiction; mainly humor, trendy, socially relevant and no biographies); middle grade nonfiction; YA fiction (contemporary, light—no dark/heavy themes if possible). Learn more about Julie here.
Ronald Gerber is a literary agent and manages foreign rights, permissions, and contracts at Lowenstein Associates. Ronald is actively building his list in the following fiction and nonfiction genres: thriller, mystery, detective, short stories, historical fiction, memoir/biography, romance, middle grade, grounded sci-fi, narrative nonfiction, literary fiction, and historical nonfiction. Learn more about Ronald here.
Jessica Errera is a literary agent with Jane Rotrosen Agency. She is looking for: commercial women’s fiction with a fresh and fun hook, all genres of YA (especially diverse stories), contemporary romance, mysteries and suspense, the occasional historical fiction, and anything that might be read in a day on the beach. Learn more about Jessica here.
Susan Velazquez is a literary agent with JABberwocky Literary Agency. “I am primarily interested in literary/upmarket fiction, historical fiction, and women’s fiction, especially family sagas. In science fiction and fantasy, I’m looking for stories that reflect or challenge how our society functions today. In young adult, I am open to all genres but am particular towards stories that are centered on the bittersweet pains of growing up. In nonfiction, I am only interested in narrative nonfiction that examines history, technology, or pop culture. Above all, I’m looking for strong emotional arcs and characters who feel as real as possible.” Learn more about Susan here.
Jade Wong-Baxter is a literary agent with Massie & McQuilkin Literary Agents. Jade got her start in publishing at Writers House, W. W. Norton, and Folio Literary Management. A graduate of Vassar College, she joined MMQ in 2017. She’s looking for literary fiction, upmarket/mainstream fiction, and narrative nonfiction, with an emphasis on narratives by and about people of color, as well as the perspectives of marginalized identities. Learn more about Jade here.
Marie Lamba is a literary agent with Jennifer De Chiara Literary. Fiction interests: “I’m currently seeking middle grade and young adult fiction, especially with diverse points of view, or a STEM tie-in. I also want general adult fiction and women’s fiction. I’d love to find an original women’s novel that would inspire the next smart and funny chick flick. I also represent a select number of established illustrators and picture book authors. I’d love a fresh non-gory ghost story for any age. I’m fascinated with hidden treasures, artifacts and with discovering ancient civilizations right beneath our feet. I’m a huge fan of folklore and fairy tales, and, while I wouldn’t want a retelling, I always enjoy those elements woven into a story in a unique way.” Nonfiction interests: “I represent nonfiction for children and for adults. For children’s, I’m open to most non-fiction subjects, especially ones that fit into my interests (see above). In the adult realm, I want memoirs with strong voices and unique, inspiring stories (especially foodie memoirs, or ones with a celebrity or pop culture connection). In nonfiction, I’m seeking narrative nonfiction, pop culture, history (little known or unique view of well-known), science and technology for the rest of us, art, biography (especially unknown/little known sides of well-known people), parenting, cooking and food, health and wellness, lifestyle, advice and relationships, and personal finance.” Learn more about Marie here.
Tia Mele is a literary agent with Talcott Notch Literary. She is seeking: middle grade and young adult projects in any genre. “I’m especially interested in dark middle grade and contemporary YA. Please send me your LGBT+ stories, as well as stories featuring visible and invisible illnesses, especially relating to mental health. I like everything from deep, terrifying thrillers to sweet, heartwarming romances. Sports plots are always interesting to me, especially if they involve baseball or softball. Dogs are a huge part of my life, so I’m all for dog-related stories as well!” Tia is also seeking limited adult projects in women’s fiction and romance. In nonfiction, she is looking for anything sports related, especially baseball, football, or basketball. “I’m also open to cookbooks from chefs who have a following from a blog or channel.” Learn more about Tia here.
With over 10 years of publishing experience, literary agent Abby Saul of The Lark Group is an editorial expert with a passion for fantastic reads. She is seeking: great and engrossing adult commercial and literary fiction. This includes general fiction, mystery, suspense/thriller, literary fiction, women’s fiction, and historical fiction. Learn more about Abby here.
Stephanie Kehr is a jr. agent and for C.Y.L.E. Literary. She’s seeking young adult, middle grade, historical, children’s picture books, chapter books, romance, science fiction novels, fantasy novels, inspirational, and authors with strong platform, unique ideas, and diverse characters. In nonfiction, she’s interested in self-help, devotionals, leadership, biographies, and religious genres. Learn more about Stephanie here.
Kelly Peterson is a literary agent with Rees Literary Agency. Kelly seeks manuscripts in various genres within Middle Grade, Young Adult, and Adult age ranges. In Middle Grade, she loves fantasy, sci-fi, and contemporary that touches on tough issues for young readers. Her Young Adult preferences vary from contemporary to high fantasy, sci-fi (not the space kind) to paranormal (all the ghost stories, please!), and historical all the way back to rom-coms. Kelly is proud to continue to represent Adult manuscripts in romance, fantasy, and sci-fi. She is very interested in representing authors with marginalized own voices stories, witty and unique characters, pirates, witches, and dark fantasies. Learn more about Kelly here.
John Willig is a literary agent and founder of Literary Services, Inc. John is very interested in prescriptive nonfiction in many categories. However, his bar for platform for selling prescriptive books is high, so please keep that in mind if you want to pitch him. Separately, he’s very interested in a broad range of narrative nonfiction categories in history and current events, science and psychology, true crime, politics and sports “shining a light” on untold stories or fresh, counter-intuitive, and well-researched approaches to contemporary topics. He seeks great stories on narrative nonfiction with potential for film/documentary. His fiction interests are very small and slim. The only fiction he seeks is historical thrillers and historical literary fiction. Please do not pitch him anything contemporary. Learn more about John here.
Caitlin McDonald is a literary agent with Donald Maass Literary Agency. She is looking for: all types of science fiction and fantasy for adult, young adult, and middle grade, especially secondary world fantasy and alternate history; genre-bending or cross-genre fiction, and stories that examine tropes from a new angle; diversity of all kinds, including (but not limited to) race, gender, sexuality, and ability, in both characters and worldbuilding. She does not want to see women’s fiction, crime fiction, Christian fiction, picture books, or young reader chapter books. Learn more about Caitlin here.
Cari Lamba is a literary agent with The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency. For children’s books and novels: “I’m interested in middle grade fiction with wacky plots (Roald Dahl is a favorite of mine) and characters that drive the story. I would also like contemporary stories that are both humorous and heartfelt. While I am not interested in stories with high fantasy, I would welcome elements of the fantastic and otherworldly. I want novels that will resonate with children without being didactic. Both fiction and nonfiction picture books are welcome. I’m looking for unique ideas with fun and quirky elements as well as sweet, endearing picture books. In nonfiction I’m especially looking for strong female role-models.” Concerning adult novels, “I’m looking for commercial fiction with original plots and clever characters. While I’m not interested in romance novels, elements of romance are welcome. I also have particular interest in mystery/detective fiction, and novels with culinary ties. I’m NOT interested in science fiction, horror, high fantasy, Christian fiction, political novels, or books with extremely violent elements.” Learn more about Cari here.
Michelle S. Lazurek is an associate literary agent with Wordwise Media Services. Personally, she seeks Christian nonfiction for adults, and picture books (secular and Christian) for children. That said, she is taking pitches for her entire agency and co-agents, and is happy to hear pitches for science fiction, fantasy, and historical fiction. Nonfiction areas of interest for the agency include theology, Bible studies, religious/inspirational, professional, church issues, social/cultural issues, career, and reference. She takes both secular and Christian submissions. No erotica or very vulgar manuscripts, please. Learn more about Michelle here.
More 2019 agents to be announced as they are confirmed. You can sign up for pitches at any time, or switch pitches at any time, so long as the agent in question still has appointments open.
These one-on-one meetings are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind.
(Please note that Agent/Editor Pitching is an add-on, separate aspect of the day, for only those who sign up. Spaces are limited for these premium meetings, and pricing/detail is explained on this website.)