When your submission materials – a query letter, synopsis, manuscript, or book proposal – arrive in an agent’s inbox, they land among hundreds of others. Our all-new August 2013 Writer’s Digest Boot Camp is designed to help you streamline your submission materials to stand out in a good way. Attendees will learn how to write a dynamite query letter, tackle a one-page synopsis (for fiction) and a book proposal (for nonfiction). The instructing literary agents will also explain the importance of author platform in addition to basic etiquette in dealing with an agent and manuscript basics.
Lastly, all attendees will have an opportunity to interact one-on-one with an agent at Kimberley Cameron & Associates and submit 10 double-spaced pages of materials (in any combination–query, synopsis, book proposal, first pages of your manuscript) for valuable feedback provided by successful literary agents. It all happens starting Aug. 26, 2013. WD Boot Camps often sell out, and there is a limited number of seats. Sign up for the boot camp here.
Agent One-on-One: How to Craft Query Letters & Other Submission Materials That Get Noticed Bootcamp: 8/26/13 – 8/29/13. There are 175 available seats.
Here’s how it works:
On August 26, you will gain access to a special 60-minute online tutorial presented by literary agents Kimberley Cameron and Elizabeth Kracht. This tutorial will provide nuts & bolts advice on how to help you streamline your submission materials—including the query letter, novel synopsis, nonfiction book proposal, and first pages.
After listening to the presentation, attendees will spend the next two days revising materials as necessary. Following the tutorial, writers will have two days in which to log onto the blackboard and ask your assigned agent critiquer questions related to revising your materials. The agents will be available on the blackboard from 1-3 p.m. (PDT) on both Tuesday, August 27 and Wednesday, August 28. By end of day (11:59 p.m., PDT) on Thursday, August 29, attendees will submit up to 10 double-spaced pages for review to their assigned agents. These pages can include any combination of double-spaced query, synopsis, book proposal, or pages of their manuscript.
The agents will spend one week reviewing all assigned pages, provide relevant feedback and offer suggestions to help attendees improve upon them. The agents reserve the right to request more materials if they feel a strong connection to the work and want to read more.
Critique options explained:
The agents at Kimberley Cameron & Associates are allowing all attendees to individually choose exactly what they want to receive instructor feedback on. The total amount of material you can submit is ten pages of double-spaced material.
If submitting a query letter: Keep the query letter to 2-4 pages in length, double-spaced. (One single-spaced page is the recommended industry standard, which would be two double-spaced pages for the purposes of this boot camp.) While you can indeed turn in one single-spaced page of a query letter (equaling the same length as two double-spaced pages), submitting two double-spaced pages is preferred simply so that the agents can quickly verify the length of submitted materials to make sure that neither too much nor too little material was turned in.
If submitting a synopsis: Keep the novel/memoir synopsis to 2-4 pages in length, double-spaced. (One single-spaced page is the recommended industry standard, which would be two double-spaced pages for the purposes of this boot camp.)
If submitting book proposal text or manuscript pages: Please make sure to only turn in the exact number of pages allowed. For example, if you turn in a two-page query as well as a synopsis that runs on to a third page, the maximum number of manuscript pages allowed for critique will be five—thus equaling ten double-spaced pages total.
If there are questions about how to submit work for critique, please ask them during the boot camp’s multiple Blackboard Q&A sessions, and either an agent or WD staffer can help you with an answer. Please note that agents cannot edit materials a second time, so please do not send your revisions back to them for a second review, unless they have specifically requested more work from you in an effort to consider your book for representation.
RECAP ON DATES:
Monday, August 26th: Online Tutorial
Tuesday, August 27th: Agent Blackboard Q&A 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM (PDT)
Wednesday, August 28th: Agent Blackboard Q&A 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM (PDT)
Thursday, August 29th: Submit Ten Double-Spaced Pages by EOD (11:59 pm PDT)
Thursday, September 5th: Agent Critiques Due
Only registered students can access the blackboards. You’ll also be able to ask questions of your fellow students. Feel free to share your work and gain support from your peers.
Please note that any one of the agents may ask for additional pages if the initial submission shows serious promise.
In addition to feedback from agents, attendees will also receive:
— Download of “Everything You Need to Know About Literary Agents,” an on-demand webinar by WD editor Chuck Sambuchino
— 1-year subscription to the WritersMarket.com literary agent database
Please note that all attendees should have ten double-spaced pages (of any combination–query, synopsis, book proposal, first pages of manuscript) finished and ready to submit to the agent prior to the beginning of the event. If attendees have a preferred agent they want to work with, please notify the assigning WD editor. Though not guaranteed, we will try to link attendees with a preferred agent if they have one.
About the Agents:
Kimberley was educated at Marlborough School for Girls in Los Angeles, Humboldt State University, and Mount St. Mary’s College. She began her literary career as an agent trainee at the Marjel de Lauer Agency in association with Jay Garon in New York and worked for several years at MGM developing books for motion pictures. She was the co-founder of Knightsbridge Publishing Company with offices in New York and Los Angeles. In 1993 Kimberley became partners with Dorris Halsey of The Reece Halsey Agency, founded in 1957. Among its clients have been Aldous Huxley, William Faulkner, Upton Sinclair, and Henry Miller. She opened Reece Halsey North in 1995 and Reece Halsey Paris in 2006. In 2009 the agency became Kimberley Cameron & Associates. Kimberley resides and works from Tiburon, California and Paris, France, with many visits to New York to make the rounds of editorial offices. She is looking for exceptional writing in any field, particularly writing that touches the heart, and makes us feel something. She’s been successful with many different genres, and especially loves the thrill of securing representation for debut authors. She represents both fiction and nonfiction manuscripts, with the exception of romance, children’s books and screenplays.
Elizabeth Kracht represents both literary and commercial fiction as well as nonfiction, and brings to the agency experience as a former acquisitions editor, freelance publicist and writer. Elizabeth’s career in publishing took root in Puerto Rico where she completed her BA in English and worked as a copyeditor for an English-language newspaper. When she returned to the mainland she found her “vein of gold” in book publishing. She thrives on working closely with authors and researching the potential market for new books. Elizabeth’s eclectic life experience drives her interests. She appreciates writing that has depth, an introspective voice or that offers wisdom for contemporary living. Having lived in cities such as New York, San Francisco and San Juan, Puerto Rico, she is compelled by urban and multicultural themes and loves settings that are characters unto themselves. In fiction, she represents literary, commercial, women’s, thrillers, mysteries, and YA with crossover appeal. She is intrigued by untrustworthy narrators, tragic tales of class and circumstance, and identifies with flawed yet sterling characters. In nonfiction, she particularly loves memoir and other narrative nonfiction projects that contribute to the well-being of the self or others in addition to niche projects that fill holes in the market, offer a fresh approach, or make her laugh. She also has a soft spot for nonfiction heroic pet stories.
Amy Cloughley came to Kimberley Cameron & Associates with a background in editing, writing, and marketing. She seeks authors with unique, clear voices who put forth smart, tightly-written prose. As a new agent, she is now actively building her client list with both debut and veteran writers. She enjoys literary and upmarket fiction of all types in addition to commercial—including well-researched historical and well-told women’s fiction. She also loves a page-turning mystery, suspense, or thriller with sharp wit and unexpected twists and turns. She has a soft spot for distinctive, strong, contemporary characters set in small towns. Amy always looks for an unexpected story arc, a suitable pace, and a compelling protagonist. She is interested in narrative nonfiction when the plot and characters are immersed in a culture, lifestyle, discipline, or industry. She will also consider a travel or adventure memoir. Amy has studied creative writing, journalism, and literature and holds a B.S. in magazine journalism. She worked in editorial and marketing roles in magazine publishing and corporate business before shifting her professional focus to her lifelong love of books. She leverages her background in both words and business to benefit her clients.
Pooja Menon represents both fiction and nonfiction for Adult and YA markets. Her passion for reading inspired her to acquire a BA in Literature and Media from England. Her love for writing then took her to Los Angeles where she pursued an M.F.A in Fiction from the Otis School of Art and Design. As a new agent, Pooja is looking to build her client list and is eager for submissions by debut novelists and veteran writers. She’s looking for writing that has an easy flow and a timely pacing, along with a unique perspective and a strong voice. In fiction, she is interested in literary, historical, commercial, and high-end women’s fiction. However, she’s most drawn to stories with an international flavor, vibrant characters, multi-cultural themes, and lush settings. In fantasy, she’s looking for original, layered plots with worlds as real and alive as the ones that were created by J.K Rowling and Tolkien. In nonfiction, she’s looking for adventure & travel memoirs, journalism & human-interest stories, and self-help books addressing relationships and the human psychology from a fresh perspective. In YA, she’s looking for stories that deal with the prevalent issues that face teenagers today. She is also interested in fantasy, magical-realism, and historical fiction.
Ethan Vaughan joined Kimberley Cameron & Associates after completing a summer internship with Folio Literary Management in New York. He is a lifelong bookworm who’s looking for that manuscript that will make him believe in magic again. In fantasy and science fiction manuscripts Ethan is very selective and particularly looks for believable characters, unique premises, and the integration of mythology into modern life (think the Percy Jackson series). He has a soft spot for quirky, under-the-radar stories like And Having Writ…and The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul. Ethan is also looking for literary fiction, horror, historical fiction, accessible historical non-fiction (Cleopatra: A Life is a good example), well-done political literature, and women’s fiction. Ethan graduated from George Mason University with a degree in government and international politics. First professionally published at thirteen, he has written for most of his life and before joining Kimberley Cameron & Associates worked as a journalist covering politics and popular culture. He is actively searching for new voices.