New Agent: Jon Sternfeld of Irene Goodman Literary

NOTE: As of summer 2012, Jon has become an editor and is no longer agenting.
Do not query him.
Reminder: New literary agents (with this spotlight featuring Jon Sternfeld of Irene Goodman Literary) are golden opportunities for new writers because each one is a literary agent who is likely building his or her client list.
Jon Sternfeld of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency

80 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1101, New York, NY  10011. E-mail:

Actively seeking: intelligent literary fiction, high-end modern fiction; nonfiction and narrative nonfiction dealing with social, cultural and historical issues; an occasional memoir and current affairs book.

Prior to his current position: Jon comes to the agency from the film world, where he worked both the creative and development sides. He is actively seeking new clients. “I’d be happy if people just reached out to me,” he says.

How to contact: “For Unpublished Authors: If you have a manuscript that you would like to send to the agency, please first ask yourself the following questions: 1) Is this manuscript in the best possible shape? Do I believe it is ready to sell, or am I just testing the waters? 2) Have I completed the manuscript? 3) Does it fit the guidelines of the kinds of books this agency represents? If you can answer yes to all of the above, then please do the following: Send a query letter and the first 10 pages, along with a detailed synopsis of the entire book, in the body of an e-mail to (Query, ATTN: Jon Sternfeld).”

Responds in: 1-2 months. If interested, this agent will request more pages. E-mail queries only. No snail mail or phone queries will be accepted, nor will any queries to Jon’s personal e-mail account. “Because we are receiving more than 50 queries a day, the system is getting overloaded. If your e-mail bounces back, please do not call the office. Just try again in a day or two.”




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One thought on “New Agent: Jon Sternfeld of Irene Goodman Literary

  1. Bill Smoot

    Jon took on a non-fiction book I did, and he pretty much proved to be a dream agent. He took the proposal to a series of good editors, received timely responses from them, and kept me updated. When he had exhausted the commercial possibilities, he pursued university presses (though there was little in it for him monetarily at this point) and there we happily found a publisher. Great agent!


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