PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These one-on-one virtual (Zoom) meetings at the 2022 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 2022 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.
Lesley Sabga is a literary agent with The Seymour Agency. She is seeking: Lesley loves intricate and vivid world-building and character-driven plots. She is acquiring young adult and adult fiction. She is always down to read dark and twisty suspense or thriller featuring strong, female protagonists. She also loves curling up with a good cozy mystery. For non-fiction, Lesley would love to see more self-help, lifestyle, true crime, and pop culture submissions in her inbox. Always open to diversity, Lesley is actively looking for marginalized authors to bring into the literary world. Learn more about Lesley here.
Zoe Bodzas [SOLD OUT OF PITCH APPOINTMENTS] is a literary agent with McIntosh & Otis, Inc. For fiction, interested in dark comedy, dry humor, coming of age, campy/pulpy sensibility, strong and uncommon settings, dysfunctional family sagas, offbeat coming-of-age, graphic novels, friend groups, ghosts, outcasts and underdogs, books that feel like new Netflix romcoms, stories with unconventional structures/forms, #OwnVoices projects. For nonfiction, interested in the internet, gender, travel, design, forgotten histories, subcultures, mental health, pop culture, climate, family. In general, looking to champion books that bend the rules, raise voices that are often overlooked, and offer readers something unusually funny, beautiful, or surreal. Learn more about Zoe here.
Eloy Bleifuss is a literary agent with Janklow & Nesbit. Eloy is drawn to genre-blurring novels that balance character and voice with tension and plot. He enjoys stories of regular people navigating relationships and work (Bryan Washington, Deesha Philyaw, Torrey Peters, Lauren Oyler, Andrew Martin) and character-driven speculative fiction (Jeff VanderMeer, Rivers Solomon, Stephen Graham Jones, Seth Dickinson, Yoon Ha Lee). He likes writing that is dark, uncanny, funny, and queer. When it comes to nonfiction, Eloy is interested in a broad range of categories from omnivorous cultural criticism and forgotten histories to big ideas books and relatable self-help. Learn more about Eloy here.
Leticia Gomez [SOLD OUT OF PITCH APPOINTMENTS] is a literary agent and the founder of Savvy Literary. At the present time, Savvy Literary Agency is interested in reviewing compelling and commercially viable book proposals and manuscripts written in English or Spanish. Fiction areas of interest: adventure, chick lit, fantasy, historical, humor, multicultural, mystery, paranormal, romance, young adult, and middle grade. Nonfiction areas of interest: advice/relationships, biography, cooking, diet, health, history/politics/current affairs, how-to, humor, lifestyle, memoir, parenting, religion/spirituality and true crime. Learn more about Leticia here.
Leah Pierre [SOLD OUT OF PITCH APPOINTMENTS] is a literary agent with Ladderbird Literary. In young adult as well as adult fiction, she is seeking some fantasy, romantic meet-cute stories, realistic and raw family-centered novels, mysteries, psychological thrillers, fairy tale retellings, espionage/heist, historical fiction and fantasy, social justice inspired stories, romance (ideally interracial or at least something out of the ordinary). In new adult fiction, she seeks romance (again, interracial or at least something out of the ordinary), coming of age, F/F friendship, and books about the college experience as well as the post-college experience. Learn more about Leah here.
Allison Hellegers is a literary agent and rights director at Stimola Literary Studio. As both Foreign Rights Director and Literary Agent, Allison’s tastes lean towards books that have emotional hooks mixed with strong plot, film/TV and/or translation appeal, and take the reader on a journey. “Please send me your middle-grade and young adult submissions: I’m looking for strong, real voices (#ownvoices a plus, especially LGBTQ+ and BIPOC), diverse stories, gut-wrenching romance and impossible love triangles, coming-of-age family dynamics/drama, charming magical realism, quirky humor, survival stories, 80s/90s nostalgia, and books that have a profound new angle and emotionally resonate. Above all, it should say something new, uniquely. Please do NOT send picture book texts, but I would look at an author-illustrator submission with an already existing dummy. For adult fiction and nonfiction, I’m drawn to powerful and engaging stories told from the voices that we don’t often hear. I love psychological drama, gripping family dysfunction and stories that go in unexpected directions.” Learn more about Allison here.
Emily Williamson is a literary agent and the founder of Williamson Literary. In adult fiction she is looking for lyrical prose, stories with unique settings, adventure, international, fantasy/sci-fi or science inspired, magical realism. For children’s, she seeks stories that talk up to kids, that inspire and build confidence with cleverness and humor. Prefers middle grade over YA; no picture books. Nonfiction interests: history, sports, science, environmental, narrative, and a solid author platform. Currently looking for science or adventure/travel narratives in the vein of books such as Shadow of the Silk Road or The Sports Gene. Learn more about Emily here.
Latoya C. Smith is a literary agent with Arthouse Literary. In fiction, she seeks high-concept women’s fiction; high-concept mystery, thriller and horror, romance (contemporary, romantic suspense, cowboys, historical, LGBTQ, paranormal, sweet), comedy / romantic comedy, and young adult (no SF/F). In nonfiction, she is strictly seeking platform and market-based books in the areas of memoir, how to, advice, relationships, health, wellness, politics, current events, history, sports, pop culture, and business. Learn more about Latoya here.
Ben Miller-Callihan joined Handspun Literary Agency as an associate agent in 2019. He spent more than a decade teaching high school English, and is now actively building his client list. His interests include humor, young adult and middle grade novels, speculative fiction (especially decolonial science fiction and fantasy), mainstream-ish fiction a la David Mitchell and William Gibson, and anything food-related. Learn more about Ben here.
Shauna Turnmire is a literary agent with Arthouse Literary. As an associate agent at ArtHouse, Shauna is often drawn to stories that are a little strange, and especially ones that use speculative or fantastic elements in beautiful, original ways. Across the board, she’s looking for an inclusive cast of characters, across gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, and mental health spectrums. Pitch her: contemporary romance, upmarket fiction, YA fantasy, new adult fantasy, thriller & speculative fiction. Shauna is mostly looking for YA and new adult fantasy with major character development. Shauna is also intrigued by historical fiction, preferably centered around the Holocaust and the French Revolution. She would love to see anything centered around Irish or Celtic history and lore/mythology. Learn more about Shauna here.
Gordon Warnock is a literary agent founding partner at Fuse Literary. In nonfiction, he seeks platform-heavy authors in the categories of memoir (Adult, NA, YA, Graphic), cookbooks/Food Narrative/Food Studies, Illustrated/Art/Photography (especially graphic nonfiction), Political and Current Events, Pop-Science, Pop-Culture (especially punk culture and geek culture), Self-Help, How-To, Humor, Pets, Business and Career. In fiction, he seeks High-Concept Suspense, Book Club Women’s Fiction, Literary Fiction for Adults through YA, and Graphic Novels for Adults through MG. Learn more about Gordon here.
Tori Sharp is a literary agent with Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency. She is ONLY open to middle grade novels as well as children’s graphic novels. “As a graphic novelist myself, I am eager to represent stunning, playful, diverse, and important comics for kids in elementary through high school. I love comics that are heartfelt and gestural, and I tend to like art styles that look animated and soft, but bright. I am also currently looking for upbeat middle-grade manuscripts that make readers think about the world around them in a new way—especially fantasy, high-concept fiction, and memoirs. I gravitate toward stories that are simultaneously silly and sincere. I am looking for clearly defined magic, intimate stakes, and clever twists that I won’t be able to stop thinking about.” Learn more about Tori here.
Léonicka Valcius is a literary agent at Transatlantic Literary. “I am eager to work with people of color, including (but not limited to) trans people, disabled people, religious minorities, and queer folks. Adult and Young Adult fiction: “I like books I can read on a beach vacation — fun commercial fiction, romance that ranges from sweet to steamy, otherworldly fantasy, and sweeping historical fiction.” Middle Grade and younger: “I love humour, adventure, and make believe. I also enjoy stories about children navigating their changing relationships with family and friends. I strongly prefer books with at least one human character.” Learn more about Léonicka here.
Ken Sherman is President of Ken Sherman & Associates, a Los Angeles based literary agency. The company was established in 1989, and handles film, television, and book writers, as well as selling film and television rights for books and life-rights. Concerning what he seeks, Ken is a generalist, and represents adult fiction and nonfiction of all types. He does not want pitches for children’s books or novels of any kind. Learn more about Ken Sherman here.
Sera Rivers is a literary agent with Martin Literary Management. Sera is currently accepting queries for middle grade and young adult fiction and graphic novels, as well as the occasional picture book. Specifically, among other things, Sera likes: #ownvoices, YA that is fast-paced, compelling, and mind-bending stories with unreliable narrators. In middle grade, Sera is seeking voice-driven contemporary stories that tackle tough topics (such as From the Desk of Zoe Washington by Janae Marks; Melissa’s Story by Alex Gino). Sera would love to represent more graphic stories in all genres of the children’s market. Sera is only looking for picture books that tackle tough topics. Learn more about Sera here.
Jared Johnson is a literary agent with Olswanger Literary. “I am interested in science fiction, fantasy (high, historical, or contemporary), magical realism and speculative fiction, mystery, and thriller. I’m also hoping to add some thought-provoking upmarket horror to my list. In nonfiction, I am looking for narrative-driven books, and I am drawn to accessible scholarship that engages with current social issues. In particular, I am interested in works that challenge long-held cultural narratives. With both, I am actively searching for writers who identify as being from marginalized communities. Learn more about Jared here.
Julie Stevenson is a literary agent with Massie McQuilkin Literary Agents. Julie represents literary and upmarket fiction, suspense, memoir, graphic novels, narrative nonfiction, young adult fiction, and children’s picture books. She is drawn to powerful storytelling in these categories and looks for unforgettable characters, an authorial command of voice, a strong sense of narrative tension, and stories that explore the depths of human experience, particularly the many facets of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, social class, social justice, and regional backgrounds. Julie specializes in editorial development of both fiction and nonfiction projects and values the creativity and collaboration of the agent-author relationship. Learn more about Julie here.
Rebecca Eskildsen is a literary agent at Writers House. “I am actively growing my list, with a particular interest in middle grade, YA, and adult fiction. Across the board, I’m looking to elevate LGBTQ+ and BIPOC voices, among other underrepresented narratives. In middle grade, I’m looking for a range of fiction, from fun adventure stories to contemporary books that make kids feel seen. Mostly I want to see fresh, engaging voices, particularly narratives with a sense of humor and a strong emotional core. For YA, I’m looking for some darker themes and twisty, gripping stories, but also some lighthearted fun! Give me your ambitious “unlikable” girls (ugh – I’ll like them) and your funny, slow-burn romances. I’m looking for a more limited variety of adult books. I’d love to have my inbox full of contemporary rom coms. I’m also looking for sagas about families and/or friends, of any age or topic, and I’m looking for 20-something coming-of-age stories.” Learn more about Rebecca here.
Michael Carr is a literary agent with Veritas Literary. With a strong background in editing and writing, Michael enjoys teaching at workshops and conferences to help develop emerging writers. He is fluent in Spanish and speaks conversational French. Before joining Veritas, Michael had professions as diverse as programming simulators for nuclear submarines and owning an inn in Vermont. He is seeking: Historical Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Science Fiction and Fantasy, and Nonfiction of all stripes. Learn more about Michael here.
Dani Segelbaum is a literary agent with the Carol Mann Agency. Dani is seeking nonfiction titles with an emphasis on politics, women’s issues, popular culture, and current events. Dani also loves memoir, narrative nonfiction, lifestyle, and cookbooks. In fiction, she is looking for literary and upmarket adult fiction including debut, historical, rom-coms, mysteries, and women’s fiction. In both fiction and non-fiction, Dani hopes to work with authors from diverse backgrounds to tell stories that are important to them. She loves compelling narrators and is drawn to writing that is voice-driven, highly transporting, and features unique perspectives and marginalized voices. Learn more about Dani here.
Kayla Cichello is a literary agent with Upstart Crow Literary. Kayla brings to Upstart Crow Literary nearly a decade of experience in children’s publishing. A former Conference Coordinator for the International Summer and Winter Conferences for the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, she most recently logged several years as an agent assistant. She is open to a wide range of children’s books, from picture books through young adult novels, and is especially keen to discover unique voices and champion new creators of tomorrow’s classics. Learn more about Kayla here.
Saint Gibson is a literary agent with Speilburg Literary. Saint is interested in representing adult novels and graphic novels in the genres of romance, science fiction, fantasy, and horror. In romance, she’s most interested in representing queer and polyamorous love stories of all kinds, especially historicals that read like KJ Charles or Cat Sebastian, or high heat, high angst contemporary romances that feel like Sierra Simone or Tiffany Reisz books. Saint is also interested in representing select titles in religious and metaphysical nonfiction, particularly titles with a progressive bent or interfaith appeal. She’s interested in memoirs of faith lost or found, accessible theology that engages with current events and pop culture, and stories of syncretism. Learn more about Saint here.
Rae Loverde is an agent assistant at Donald Maass Literary Agency. At the 2022 online PWW event, she will be acting as a literary scout — taking pitches at the workshop on behalf of her co-agents. Her co-agent Kiana Nguyen is seeking the following: contemporary romances like Alisha Rai and Alyssa Cole, adult sci-fi that feels like “Black Mirror,” and psychological thrillers. In YA, she’s looking for thrillers and contemporary that’s queer, POC, or features a mystery. Her co-agent Caitlin McDonald is seeking the following: all science fiction & fantasy fiction for adult, YA, and MG, 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. Learn more about Rae here.
Elizabeth Kracht is a literary agent with Kimberley Cameron & Associates. Having lived in cities such as New York, San Francisco and San Juan, Puerto Rico, she is compelled by multicultural themes and characters and is drawn toward strong settings. In fiction, she represents literary, commercial, women’s, thrillers, mysteries, historical, and crossover YA. In nonfiction, she is interested in high concept, health, science, environment, prescriptive, investigative, true crime, voice- or adventure-driven memoir, sexuality, spirituality, and animal/pet stories. Learn more about Elizabeth here.
Jessica Kasmer-Jacobs is a literary agent with The Deborah Harris Agency. Jessica recieved her BA in English Literature from New York University and her MPhil in Irish Literature from Trinity College Dublin. Before moving to Israel, she was an editor at the Wall Street Journal Book Review. She has previously worked at the Joy Harris Literary Agency in New York, The Irish Jewish Museum in Dublin, and Blue Man Group in Boston. Jessica is interested in literary fiction, serious nonfiction memoir, historical fiction and picture books. Learn more about Jessica here.
Michelle Grajkowski is a literary agent with 3 Seas Literary. She primarily represents romance, women’s fiction, young adult and middle grade fiction along with select nonfiction projects with a terrific message. She is currently looking for fantastic writers with a voice of their own. Learn more about Michelle here and the books she seeks.
Hannah VanVels is a literary with Belcastro Agency. She is seeking:”First and foremost, I’m building an inclusive list with a variety of voices and genres. I love working with #OwnVoices authors, and I’m looking for voices from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds, regardless of genre. In a nutshell, I am looking for fresh voices and fresh takes in the following categories:” children’s picture books (including author-illustrators), middle grade (fantasy, adventure, horror, or animals), young adult (fantasy, thrillers/creepy, contemporary, sci-fi, and books that trend younger), and new adult & adult novels (horror, accessible fantasy, commercial women’s fiction and romantic comedies). Learn more about Hannah here.
Amaryah Orenstein is a literary agent with Go Literary. Amaryah has always loved to read and provide (oftentimes unsolicited) editorial advice and, as a literary agent, she is thrilled to help writers bring their ideas to life. She is particularly drawn to narrative nonfiction and memoir but enjoys any book that connects the reader to its characters and evokes thought and feeling. Learn more about Amaryah here.
Paul S. Levine is a literary agent and the founder of Paul S. Levine Literary. He is also an attorney. His fiction interests include adventure novels, mainstream fiction, mysteries, romance, thrillers, and women’s fiction. His nonfiction interests include business/commerce, pop culture, how-to, self-help, politics/law, relationships, and sports. Learn more about Paul here.
Charlotte Wenger is a literary agent in the Boston area with Prospect Agency. Prior to joining Prospect, she was an associate editor at Page Street Kids, where she acquired and edited fiction and nonfiction picture books. Charlotte is drawn to children’s literature and art for all ages—board books through young adult, but especially picture books—as well as select adult nonfiction biographies and memoirs. Learn more about Charlotte here.
Kortney Price is a literary agent with Raven Quill Literary Agency. “I work primarily on children’s books — stories from board book up through young adult. My tastes in stories are pretty broad, but here’s a rundown of what I’m most excited about seeing in my inbox. I am committed to building a list that reflects the diversity of our world and so I am passionate about diverse representation in the books I work with. I would love to see a vast array of characters and own voices writers writing them. Because of my experience working with the special needs community, I’m especially excited for books featuring all of those uniquely special brains or bodies that don’t operate like everyone else’s.” Kortney seeks all ages of children’s nonfiction and fiction, including picture book, graphic novel, early reader, middle grade, young adult. Learn more about Kortney here.
Denise Barone is a literary agent and the founder of Barone Literary Agency. She is seeking: horror, young adult, new adult, erotic romance, women’s fiction, and romance (single title, category, or historical). She does not want: No picture books, middle grade, sci-fi, fantasy, paranormal, or nonfiction. “I have been a member of RWA since 2000. I do not accept any previously published materials.” Learn more about Denise here.
More 2022 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.)