PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These (virtual) one-on-one meetings at the 2022 Kansas City Writing Workshop are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent (via Zoom or phone), 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.
Maria Vicente is a Senior Literary Agent and Advisor at P.S. Literary representing bold and innovative books for kids, teens, and curious adults. “I welcome and encourage submissions from BIPOC and LGBTQ+ creators whether or not your story is considered #ownvoices.” She is seeking young adult fiction (contemporary, magical realism, horror, mystery, thriller, and light fantasy—just to name a few); middle grade fiction (all genres), chapter books with strong series potential, picture books by author-illustrators, kidlit nonfiction projects for readers of all ages (including smart essay collections and illustrated gift books); and kidlit Graphic Novels for all age categories. Learn more about Maria here.
Erica Bauman is a literary agent with Aevitas Creative Management. Erica is currently focused on representing a wide range of authors across middle grade, young adult, and adult fiction, as well as some select narrative nonfiction projects. She is most interested in novels that straddle the line between literary and commercial, imaginative tales with a speculative twist, fearless storytellers that tackle big ideas and contemporary issues, and working with and supporting marginalized authors and stories that represent the wide range of humanity. “In adult, I gravitate towards stories that have a commercial premise and beautiful writing. I love voice-driven, witty rom-coms, historical novels (especially mysteries), and light SFF and magical realism. I’m on the lookout for books starring nerds, and stories that make me laugh. Across all age ranges and genres, I’m eager to support and work with marginalized authors and stories that represent the wide range of humanity.” Learn more about Erica here.
Regina A. Bernard-Carreno is a literary agent with Martin Literary Management. Regina is a literary manager currently accepting queries for true crime, memoirs, picture books, middle grade, young adult, graphic novels, cookbooks, and lifestyle artisan books. The work she hopes to accomplish as a literary manager is to help writers, as well as author-illustrators, think through their projects, see multiple opportunities where perhaps they don’t readily exist and help shape their work into successful books. Ultimately, she looks forward to championing great ideas. Learn more about Regina here.
Lauren Scovel is a literary agent with Laura Gross Literary Agency. She is especially interested in fiction and nonfiction involving social justice, political issues, and other timely and underrepresented stories. “I’m specifically interested in fiction and nonfiction stories that effortlessly depict a diverse cast of characters and perspectives.” Her fiction specialties are: GLBT, literary fiction, and multicultural. She will also consider humor/satire. Her nonfiction specialties are cultural/social issues, current affairs, GLBT, investigative journalism, multicultural, narrative, politics, true crime, and women’s concerns. She will also consider: history, memoir, and pets. Learn more about Laura here.
Hannah Andrade is a literary agent with Bradford Literary. She is particularly wanting to acquire BIPOC/underrepresented voices. She is prioritizing stories of joy where identity isn’t the focus and is especially excited about stories rooted in history, mythology, and legends, particularly those that are lesser-known or underrepresented in traditional publishing. “I am currently looking to acquire middle grade, young adult, adult, and select nonfiction. As someone who’s spent a large portion of their life outside of America, I am very interested in stories that explore the intricacies of multicultural identities. As a Mexican-American, I would particularly love to see the stories that I grew up with showcased in new and creative ways—send me your Latinx folklore-inspired MG and YA! In nonfiction, I’m looking for something that takes the mystery out of everyday life/occurrences (a lá Malcolm Gladwell or Atul Gawande) and investigative journalism-esque stories with a strong narrative hook.” Learn more about Hannah here.
Dana Newman is a literary agent with Dana Newman Literary. “We are interested in practical nonfiction (business, health and wellness, psychology, parenting, technology) by authors with smart, unique perspectives and established platforms who are committed to actively marketing and promoting their books. We love compelling, inspiring narrative nonfiction in the areas of memoir, biography, history, pop culture, current affairs/women’s interest, social trends, and sports/fitness. A favorite genre is literary nonfiction: true stories, well told, that read like a novel you can’t put down. On the fiction side we consider a very selective amount of literary fiction and women’s upmarket fiction. We look for character-driven stories written in a distinctive voice that are emotionally truthful.” Learn more about Dana here.
Sam Farkas is a literary agent with Jill Grinberg Literary Management. In adult fiction, Sam is looking for upmarket fiction of all stripes, but especially historical; fast-paced, high-concept speculative thrillers that make her heart race; lyrical and immersive fantasy; and single-title romance that simmers. Sam is also open to Young Adult and Middle Grade of all genres, but she has a special fondness for thoughtful contemporary, often with a speculative twist; historical with modern sensibilities; fantasy with morally gray protagonists and complicated character dynamics; the very strange, and the very funny. In all categories and genres, she is looking for diverse and underrepresented voices. Above all, Sam is drawn to exemplary writing. “I will consider select Picture Books and Nonfiction, but my focus is primarily on novels at this time.” Learn more about Sam here.
Barb Roose is a literary agent with Books & Such Literary. Barb represents nonfiction and adult fiction exclusively to Christian publishers. She loves partnering with authors to achieve their publishing career goals. With experience as an author, award-winning pharmaceutical sales representative and executive leader in the megachurch environment, Barb embraces the challenges and opportunities that agenting in Christian publishing offers. Her desire is to come alongside hopeful and established authors to create the most marketable, appealing manuscripts that will build lasting careers and influence readers. Learn more about Barb here. (Please note that Barb will be taking her KCWW pitches on Monday, August 8, rather than the event Saturday like other agents.)
Maeve MacLysaght is a literary agent with Copps Literary Services. Maeve seeks genre-blending commercial queer Fiction in YA/MG/Adult/Graphic Novels with a particular focus on BIPOC authors and authors of marginalized identities. She is NOT looking for nonfiction, genre fiction that perpetuates the racist, colonial, imperialistic, sexist, ableist tropes of the past, non-intersectional representation; no victories at the expense of another group, or low stakes, excessive realism. Learn more about Maeve here.
Analieze Cervantes is a literary agent with The Harvey Klinger Literary Agency. “I’m especially open to BIPOC and LGBTQ voices.” She represents author-illustrators for picture books and graphic novels. She seeks middle grade and young adult fiction. For adult fiction, she seeks thriller and suspense, mystery, contemporary romance, romantic suspense, romantic comedies, paranormal, science fiction, and crime fiction. Learn more about Analieze here.
Susan Nystoriak is a literary agent with Golden Wheat Literary. As an agent with Golden Wheat, her main focus is on Adult Fiction. Susan is seeking: Susan is seeking authors who write for the Adult readership. RomCom’s, Women’s Fiction, and Mystery/Crime are high on her list! She is drawn to lighter themes, and humor is a plus. She represents authors who word-weave wonderful tales, and whose characters pursue their passions. She is not seeking children’s books of any kind. Learn more about Susan here.
Ann Rose is a literary agent with Prospect Agency. She is seeking all kinds of young adult fiction; she loves stories with heart & humor, strong characters that stand up for their convictions, thrillers, and stories that deal with the issues kids face today. She seeks middle grade across all genres, especially ones that push the boundaries. For adult fiction, she wants swoony romances (any level but erotica), very light sci-fi or fantasy, fresh retellings, heartwarming contemporaries, unique voices, diverse perspectives, vivid settings, and stories that explore tough topics. Learn more about Ann here.
Amy Levenson is the founding literary agent of Blue Heron Literary. She represents: mainstream literary and commercial fiction, and nonfiction in the areas of memoir, biography, narrative nonfiction, popular culture, and cookery. She is actively seeking nonfiction, especially with topics in heath and nutrition, cookbooks, lifestyle and popular culture. She is especially drawn to new trends or new takes on old favorites, strong voice and dynamic platforms, and is always susceptible to a good solid tug on the heart strings. Learn more about Amy here.
Kelly Peterson is a literary agent with Rees Literary. 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.
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.
Zoe Howard is a literary agent with Howland Literary. Zoe represents adult fiction and nonfiction. Zoe is seeking adult literary and upmarket fiction, and would especially love to see underrepresented voices and places, LGBTQ+ narratives, magical realism, and characters breaking away from archetypes and conventions. In nonfiction, Zoe is seeking narrative nonfiction, memoir, and expert-driven nonfiction about internet culture, music, relationships, religion/spirituality, and true crime. “I am most interested in writing that seeks to break trends: the lyricists writing prose, the southerners writing about the convenience stores and coastal edges of their south, the non-traditional narrators of fiction, and so on.” Learn more about Zoe here.
Leticia Gomez 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.
Jon Michael Darga is a literary agent with Aevitas Creative Management. Jon represents titles across a diverse range of genres, and represents both nonfiction and fiction. He is most interested in voice-driven pop culture writing, nonfiction histories that re-cast the narrative by emphasizing unexpected or unheard voices, and both adult and young adult commercial fiction that features diverse casts and new stories. He is not looking for genre fiction. Learn more about Jon here.
Olga Filina is a Literary Agent and Partner at 5 Otter Literary. She is currently looking for narrative and prescriptive nonfiction projects across all categories: literary and book club fiction, historical fiction, crime, mystery, suspense, and memoir with exceptional writing, focusing on underrepresented voices. In the children’s space, she is looking for middle grade fiction with memorable characters, contemporary YA, and nonfiction across all categories. Learn more about Olga 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.
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.
Pam Gruber is a literary agent with Irene Goodman Literary. Pam is looking for adult, young adult, and middle grade fiction with literary voices and commercial hooks. She is particularly interested in layered fantasy, speculative fiction, fantastical realism, rom-coms, and coming-of-age stories with a twist. She is also open to middle grade and YA graphic novels, as well as select narrative non-fiction on lesser-known subjects. Pam would not be the best fit for prescriptive nonfiction, anthologies, potty humor, paranormal, or erotica. Learn more about Pam here.
Cortney Radocaj is a literary agent with Belcastro Agency. As a member and advocate of both the LGBT and neurodiverse communities, Cortney adores seeing works that celebrate and normalize these experiences, particularly in YA. She is seeking: young adult, new adult, and adult. She is looking for LGBT (particularly F/F), neurodiversity, fantasy, science fiction, steampunk, cyberpunk, mythology/fairytale retellings, gothic, paranormal, contemporary, horror, and magical realism. Learn more about Cortney here.
Daniel Cramer is a literary agent and founder of Page Turner Literary. “While I love all books, my heart beats for children’s literature for many reasons, but the main reason is children’s literature is fearless. These books and their authors are not afraid to tackle tough topics, to celebrate diversity, or bring awareness to issues that others would turn their backs on.” Daniel is seeking picture books (no rhyming please, anything goes for fiction, STEM nonfiction), middle grade (horror, contemporary, adventure, historical, nature guide nonfiction), young adult (horror, contemporary, retellings, historical, romance, nonfiction cookbooks/STEM), graphic novels (horror, contemporary, historical, retelling, mythology), chapter books and early readers (any fiction, nonfiction STEM and historical bios), and diverse voices. Learn more about Daniel here.
Amy Stern is a literary agent with Sheldon Fogelman Agency. Amy works with clients who write and illustrate all kinds of children’s literature, from picture book through young adult, in poetry, prose, and graphic formats. “I enjoy a little bit of everything, and constantly surprise myself with what I want to take on; I don’t think of myself as someone who’s a big fan of romance or high fantasy or historical fiction, for example, but I can think of several examples of each that really worked for me that I wouldn’t want to rule out. That said, if you have a historical fantasy romance, I’m probably not your best bet. I got my masters degree in children’s literature and I’m passionate about the idea that even the funniest, most lighthearted stories deserve to be taken seriously. If you think of children’s books as something easy to write or illustrate, we probably won’t be a good match.” Learn more about Amy here.
Rachel Beck is a literary agent with Liza Dawson Associates. Specifically, she’s looking for: Upmarket/book club women’s fiction; Light-hearted millennial fiction or contemporary romance (a beach read, but with plenty of heart that might make you go from laughing to crying in an instant); Domestic suspense (character-driven, psychologically intense reads); Contemporary young adult (no fantasy, but she is primarily drawn to heavy, issue-driven YA that goes after topics such as mental health, sexual assault, eating disorders, abuse, trauma, suicide, LGBTQ issues, dealing with death/grief, etc.); Select nonfiction—feminist material; career/business/personal growth books with new focus points; extreme underdog, survival, accomplishment, or rising-from-poverty type stories; select health and wellness books (especially mental health, eating disorders, any rare or underrepresented conditions, Alzheimer’s/memory—she’s especially interested in the condition known as HSAM, Highly Superior Autobiographical Memory); books about football/the NFL; marathoner/triathlete memoirs; parenting books that bring something new to the conversation; books that explore cult life or extreme religion; 9/11 survival stories; anything about Anne Frank; Anything set in the South, particularly New Orleans/the Cajun region of southern Louisiana. Learn more about Rachel here.
Carlisle Webber is a literary agent at Fuse Literary. Carlisle is looking for: high-concept commercial fiction in middle grade, young adult, and adult. If your book is fresh and exciting, tackles difficult topics, reads like a Shonda Rhimes show, or makes readers stay up late turning pages, she’s the agent for you. Diverse authors are encouraged to submit their fiction. Within the genres she represents, Carlisle is especially interested in stories by and about people of color; with both visible and invisible disabilities and illnesses; who are economically disadvantaged; who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer; or who are members of religious minorities. Pitch her: Middle grade (any genre), Young adult (any genre), thriller, mystery, suspense, horror, women’s fiction, and popular/mainstream fiction. Learn more about Carlisle here.
Mary DeMuth is a literary agent with Books & Such Literary Management. Mary is looking for: Adult nonfiction Christian living titles, particularly those with a bent toward spiritual growth, Devotionals, Discipleship-oriented books, Accessible theological books (think N.T. Wright), Books about the US church as well as the global church, Health-related topics, Mental health issues, Trauma-related recovery, Habit research, Design books, and Leadership/business/productivity ideas. She is not acquiring any fiction, YA, or children’s books. Learn more about Mary 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.)