(IMPORTANT JUNE 2020 UPDATE: The 2020 CWW is now an Online Conference to keep everyone safe, on (new date!) December 5, 2020. There is much more to say about this, but immediately you should understand 1) This will be easy and awesome, and online conferences we’ve done thus far have received wonderful feedback, 2) You do not have to be tech-savvy to do this, and 3) We are keeping all aspects of the event, including one-on-one agent & editor pitching, which will now be done by Skype or Zoom or phone. Learn all details about the (new date) December 5 CWW Online Conference here and what everything means.)
PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These one-on-one meetings at the 2020 Chesapeake Writing Workshop (new date of December 5, 2020) 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 2020 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.
Kat Kerr is a literary agent with Donald Maass Literary Agency. She is seeking: For literary and upmarket fiction, Kat is drawn to strong, character-driven works with rich, literary prose. She loves books that make her think and have a strong emotional pull. She enjoys adult contemporary, women’s fiction, adult & YA multicultural, adult historical works featuring family sagas. For the commercial market, Kat likes science fiction — specifically space operas or something dark and twisty similar to an episode of “Black Mirror”; low, epic fantasies and dark urban fantasies where the worldbuilding reflects a non-Europe based setting; quirky and fun women’s fiction and rom-coms like Bridget Jones’ Diary by Helen Fielding. For nonfiction, she seeks religion and spirituality that focus on a universal, humanitarian message; narrative nonfiction and journalistic nonfiction tackling current affairs and social justice issues, particularly covering topics of racism, immigration, LGBTQIA+ rights, gender equality, and poverty; cookbooks that are edgy and fresh, or anything that spotlights authentic, regional cuisine from across the globe; and select biographies and memoirs. Learn more about Kat here.
Jacqueline Lipton is the founder of Raven Quill Literary Agency and the author of Law & Authors: A Legal Handbook for Writers. She is seeking most kinds of middle grade and young adult fiction — especially contemporary, romance, science-fiction, mystery, and/or anything with engaging characters and plot! She also seeks MG and YA nonfiction. Learn more about Jacqueline here.
Cate Hart is a literary agent with Harvey Klinger Literary Agency. She specializes in historical, whether in young adult, women’s fiction and romance, or narrative nonfiction. She is particularly drawn to oft-forgotten stories of the past and underrepresented voices, and especially personal to her is unexplored Southern history and culture. She also loves high-concept fantasy in YA and Adult fiction. Cate seeks the following nonfiction categories: narrative, history, film, TV, theatre, pop culture, and music. She also seeks the following fiction genres: historical, commercial, women’s fiction, romance, fantasy, mystery, psychological thriller, middle grade, and young adult. Learn more about Cate here.
Jemiscoe Chambers-Black is an associate literary agent with Andrea Brown Literary Agency. Jemiscoe is currently building her client list in the middle grade, YA, and adult categories. In middle grade, Jemiscoe is most interested in contemporary manuscripts. They can focus on hard themes, but she enjoys those that also weave in humor, whimsy, adventure, and wonder. She’s also open to fantasy, which can include paranormal, low fantasy, and magical realism. Horror, mystery, and graphic novels are also of interest. In YA, Jemiscoe would love to see romance, especially rom-coms. Give her all the love stories in whatever form they come! She loves contemporary fiction that deals with friendship – its joys and struggles. She would also like to see fantasy (except high fantasy), mystery and horror. In the adult space, Jemiscoe is looking for romance. It can range from sweet to steamy, but she is not interested in erotica or historical romance. She is also open to psychological thrillers, mysteries, friendship stories, strong power-women stories, or laugh-out-loud stories. Jemiscoe loves literary fiction with beautiful prose and a strong cast of characters. She would also like to see adult fantasy (except high fantasy). Jemiscoe is especially open to BIPOC and LGBTQ voices and stories in all the above categories. Learn more about Jemiscoe here.
Michael L. Joy is a literary agent with The Seymour Agency. In fiction, he seeks character-driven commercial fiction in mystery/crime/suspense/thriller (including graphic novel script format; stories that transcend genre and have the potential to attract a wider audience (aka: upmarket fiction); new perspectives – #OwnVoices, race, gender, LGBTQ, or sub-culture – different POVs, obstacles and outcomes. In nonfiction, he seeks authors with good platform writing art, music, pop-culture or sub-culture topics, including positive mental and physical health for artist; true crime; and business self-help (ow to survive and keep positive while starting a business, running a business or working a high-pressure job). Learn more about Micheal here.
Rae Loverde is an agent assistant at Donald Maass Literary Agency. At the 2020 LA 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. 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.
Leticia Gomez is a literary agent and the founder of Saavy 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.
Tracy Marchini is a literary agent at BookEnds Literary. Tracy is looking for: picture book, middle grade and young adult manuscripts across most genres, including contemporary, mysteries, thrillers, magical realism, historical fiction, graphic novels and non-fiction. She is also looking for picture book illustrators and author-illustrators. She is not a good fit for YA horror, true crime, hard sci-fi, or high fantasy. At this time, she is not looking for board books or early chapter books. Learn more about Tracy here.
Emma Sector is a literary agent with Prospect Agency. She is seeking: “I’m open to middle grade and young adult of all types, but I’m especially drawn to fantasy adventure, magical realism, and historical fiction. I love picture books with big ideas and few words and chapter books with quirky, vibrant characters. Learn more about Emma here.
Jade Wong-Baxter is a literary agent with Massie McQuilkin Literary Agents. Jade –– junior agent and foreign rights associate –– 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 adult literary/upmarket 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.
Patrick Munnelly is a literary agent with Bond Literary. He is interested primarily in anything LGBTQ+ (nonfiction and fiction, including romance). In genre fiction, he prefers anything horror & fantasy. In nonfiction, he is interested in political science, current affairs, health & wellness, and fitness. Learn more about Patrick here.
Eva Scalzo is a literary agent with Speilburg Literary. Eva is looking to represent all subgenres of Romance, as well as science fiction, fantasy, and young adult fiction. Fun fact: “My name is not pronounced with a long E sound. I’m of Puerto Rican, Lebanese, and Spanish descent.” Learn more about Eva here.
Shannon O’Neill is a literary agent with Ross Yoon Literary. Shannon is a literary agent who helps thought leaders, public personalities, and current and recovering journalists and academics bring their book ideas to life. Shannon seeks nonfiction books that inform, intrigue, and inspire: areas of special interest include current affairs, popular science, history, memoir, and psychology. She also seeks literary fiction that reveals the inner workings of complex characters or offers a fresh look at a seemingly familiar time, place, or situation. Learn more about Shannon here.
Megan Barnard is an associate literary agent at The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency. She is seeking book for adults in the following genres: historical fiction, women’s fiction (upmarket/commercial is fine too), literary fiction, family sagas, thrillers, and fairy tale retellings. In adult nonfiction, she is only looking for memoir and narrative nonfiction right now. Learn more about Megan here.
Nikki Terpilowski is a literary agent and founder of Holloway Literary. She seeks Southern fiction, historical fiction, young adult, women’s fiction, literary fiction, mysteries, thrillers, romance (contemporary, historical and romantic suspense), cozy mysteries, science fiction (including Afrofuturist fiction), and African-American fiction of all types. For nonfiction, she seeks books related to mindfulness, healthy eating (Paleo, gluten-free, etc.), regional/ethnic/fusion cookbooks, foodie subjects, travel, alternative simple living, i.e. homesteading, minimalism, etc, interesting self-help (personal and professional), military experiences, Civil War, and Southern living. Learn more about Nikki here.
Eric Smith 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), 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.
Stacy Testa is a literary agent at Writers House. She is seeking: “I am seeking literary fiction and upmarket women’s fiction, particularly stories with international settings, unique subcultures, historical hooks, magical realism, unusual narrators, and/or strong, empowered women. On the nonfiction side, I am interested in representing remarkable memoirs, humor writing, essay collections, narrative nonfiction, history, investigative journalism, true crime, and prescriptive titles with strong platforms. Broadly speaking, I am drawn to anything with vivid characters, an interest in social justice, a compelling narrative voice, and/or a great sense of humor. I do not represent children’s books, including YA.” Learn more about Stacy here.
Latoya C. Smith is a literary agent and founder of LCS Literary Services. She is seeking high-concept women’s fiction, romance (contemporary, romantic suspense, cowboys, LGBTQ, erotic, inspirational, paranormal), high-concept thrillers and horror, and comedic fiction. For nonfiction, she seeks platform-heavy and market-driven books in the following categories: memoir, how-to, advice, health/wellness, politics, current events, and history. Learn more about Latoya here.
Ella Marie Shupe is a literary agent with Belcastro Agency. She is seeking in adult: mysteries – all subgenres, thriller, suspense, and general fiction. “In adult fiction, we look for a unique voice and a strong protagonist full of attitude. We like dark and intense but we won’t turn away something that’s a little on the lighter side. We enjoy a touch of humor, and we would never turn away something sexy.” She is looking for young adult – fantasy, science fiction, action/adventure, contemporary, magical realism, mystery/thriller, and horror. “We want profound young adult with a strong protagonist. A whacky, funny, crazy, or thought-provoking voice will draw our attention. We look for entertaining storylines that deal with tough life issues. We look for big writing that remains fast-paced.” Learn more about Ella Marie 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.
Emmy Nordstrom Higdon is a literary agent with The Rights Factory. For YA and adult fiction: “While atmospheric stories with lots of plot twists are my favourites, I’m eager to read literary fiction, feminist thrillers, book club, #OwnVoices, millennial, dark fantasy, paranormal horror, contemporary Gothic, and magical realism.” For YA and adult nonfiction, “my interests include memoir, deep dive journalistic accounts, investigative true crime, activism, essay collections, and progressive political and social commentary. Learn more about Emmy 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 known 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.
Lori Steel is a literary agent at Raven Quill Literary Agency. She represents fiction for all young readers from picture books to young adult and is actively building her list in all kidlit genres except horror. Across all age groups and genres, Lori seeks stories with authentic, unforgettable voices that reflect the diverse world we inhabit, instill the possibility of hope, and illuminate the shared human experience. Learn more about Lori here.
Amanda Jain is a literary agent at BookEnds Literary. Amanda currently reps adult romance, mystery, women’s fiction, upmarket fiction, and science fiction & fantasy, with a special emphasis on historical fiction in all genres. She also represents narrative nonfiction, especially projects exploring the literary world, art history, material culture, archaeology, food history, social history, and popular science. She loves projects with a strong sense of place and those that create a completely immersive world. She is particularly interested in books that add something important to the conversation, that explore stories we haven’t yet heard, and that introduce new voices to our reading experience. Learn more about Amanda here.
Zabé Ellor is a literary agent with The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency. He is seeking all genres and areas of young adult. He is also seeking adult science fiction and fantasy. He seeks graphic novel projects for all age groups. In nonfiction, he has wide interests as long as your platform is excellent. He particularly wants nonfiction proposals for books about science and history that teach and entertain in equal measure. Learn more about Zabe here.
Cortney Radocaj is a literary agent with Belcastro Agency. She is seeking young adult, new adult, and adult fiction in the following genres & categories: LGBTQIA+ (particularly F/F), neurodiversity, contemporary, horror, fantasy, science fiction, steampunk, cyberpunk, mythology/fairytale retellings, Gothic fiction (particularly Southern gothic), paranormal and magical realism. Learn more about Cortney here.
Carrie Howland is a literary agent and founder of Howland Literary. She represents adult literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, young adult, middle grade, and picture book authors. In terms of YA & MG, she prefers contemporary, but will look at some fantasy occasionally. No sci-fi, please. Learn more about Carrie here.
Melissa Jeglinski is a literary agent with The Knight Agency. Melissa is currently seeking projects in the following areas: romance, mystery, women’s fiction, and historical fiction, as well as projects geared to the middle grade age group. Learn more about Melissa and her background here.
Hannah VanVels is a literary agent with Corvisiero Literary. She is seeking all different kinds of middle grade and young adult fiction, including #ownvoices and nonfiction. For adult fiction, she represents horror, fantasy, literary fiction, mainstream fiction, women’s fiction, romantic comedies, and cozy mysteries. For nonfiction, she seeks memoir and essay collections. She also seeks all types (and ages) of graphic novels. Learn more about Hannah here.
Michael Carr is a literary agent with Veritas Literary. Michael is seeking: historical fiction, women’s fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and nonfiction of all stripes. Learn more about Michael here.
More 2020 agents/editors 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. You can pitch as many agents & editors as like you wish.
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.)