Secret Agents

You may have heard the oft-quoted Catch-22 of the book world: You’ve got to be published to have an agent, but agents take on only published clients. It’s true—experienced agencies usually take on writers who already have a track record and published works under their belt. So who works with new writers? You guessed it: new agents—whose client lists can be comprised of up to 75 percent new scribes. Because of the necessity of agents in today’s literary marketplace (as they act as gatekeepers who filter out work not ready for print), dozens of new agents pop up every year, each one looking for new clients to get the ball rolling.

Here are 23 agencies open to representing new writers. These agents can help you get your work into the hands of publishing houses, both big and small. The list is comprised of agents who represent a variety of subjects in fiction and nonfiction, as well as an agent that represents screenplays.

Our list features a large crop of new agents who are actively building client lists. We have a handful of tried-and-true agencies, of course, such as Writers House and Dystel & Goderich, both of which have great track records—but also big client lists, meaning they’re open to representing new writers but take on few.

Now don’t get any false ideas, such as newer agents don’t look for great work. Of course, new agencies still want the best work you can offer—same as experienced agents do, so be sure to edit your work ruthlessly and listen to the feedback of trusted peers in a writing group.

Mass mailing (or e-mailing) agents without considering each agent’s specific specialties is a big no-no. Just because these 23 agents work with new authors, there may only be three or four who handle your genre. Make sure you send your material to the right agent or you’ll simply end up wasting postage—and time.

Do they accept or prefer e-queries? Do they want a marketing plan included with a nonfiction book proposal? Do they want to review submissions exclusively?

Make sure your submission is professional—no gimmicks, glitter paper, gifts or cutesy letterhead. All these things scream amateur. And if the agent doesn’t reply in several months, send a follow-up e-mail—don’t call.

All agents listed here are based in North America and don’t charge reading fees. (They may, legitimately, charge fees for things such as postage, copying, etc.) All listed agents have confirmed to us that they’re open to queries—not manuscripts—or screenplay pitches from all writers.

Some of the listed agents are members of the Association of Authors’ Representatives (AAR)—meaning they adhere to a canon of ethics when dealing with clients.

As always, be prepared for changes, which happen on a breakneck pace in the publishing industry. Agents switch agencies; agencies close; sometimes, an agent will suddenly stop representing science fiction and instead actively seek historical fiction. And please be patient, as many of these are newer agencies, they may be overwhelmed with manuscripts, and their assurance that submissions will receive a reply in two to four weeks may not be realistic. Also, remember never to send a partial or full manuscript unless an agent directly requests it.

Many websites exist to help you find agencies and information about agenting and submissions. You can start by visiting www.wdeditors.com (run by the editors of Writer’s Digest Books) and checking out the Agents on the Web series (under “Categories”).

So peruse our list—and find an agent that you’re willing to be signed with.

THE LIST:

Allen O’Shea Literary Agency, 615 Westover Road, Stamford CT 06902. publishersmarketplace.com/members/AllenOShea. Est. 2006. Member agents: Marilyn Allen, Coleen O’Shea. Stats: 20% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 100% nonfiction books. Needs: nonfiction (animals, biography/autobiography, business/economics, cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, health/medicine, history, how-to, humor/satire, military/war, money/finance, popular culture, psychology, self-help/personal, improvement, sports, interior design/decorating). “We look for clients with strong marketing platforms and new ideas coupled with strong writing.” This agency is actively seeking books on health, history, successful business stories and narrative nonfiction. Doesn’t want: fiction, poetry, textbooks, children’s. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE, outline, author bio and marketing page. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 1 week to queries, 1-2 months to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Prepare a strong overview, with competition, marketing and bio.”

AGENT DEFINITIONS:

AAR Association of Authors’ Representatives

SASE self-addressed, stamped envelope

Query letter to an agent that previews a book you’re writing or have written

ms manuscript (mss is the plural)

WGA Writers Guild of America

Avenue A Literary, 419 Lafayette St., 3rd Floor, New York NY 10003. avenuealiterary.com. Est. 2006. Member agent: Jennifer Cayea. Stats: 75% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Needs: short-story collections; juvenile books; nonfiction (cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, ethnic/cultural interests, health/medicine, history, memoirs, music/dance, popular culture, self-help/personal improvement, sports, theater/film); fiction (family saga, feminist, historical, literary, mainstream/contemporary, thriller, young adult, women’s/chick lit). “We’re actively seeking up-market commercial fiction, literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, young adult and memoir. Our authors are dynamic and diverse. We seek strong new voices in fiction and nonfiction and are fiercely dedicated to our authors.” Doesn’t want: romance, mysteries. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 6-8 weeks to queries, 8-10 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Build a résumé by publishing short stories if you’re a fiction writer.”

Bennett & West Literary Agency, 1004 San Felipe Lane, The Villages FL 32159. bennettwestlit.com. Est. 2005. Member agents: Joan West (fiction, nonfiction); Lois Bennett (YA and fiction). Stats: 60% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 25% nonfiction books, 65% novels, 10% juvenile books. Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, current affairs, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, how-to, memoirs, military/war, nature/environment, new age/metaphysics, psychology, self-help/personal improvement, sociology, sports, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, family saga, fantasy, historical, juvenile, literary, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, psychic/supernatural, regional, romance, science fiction, sports, thriller, young adult). Doesn’t want: erotica, horror, screenplays, picture books, academic. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE, proposal package, outline/proposal, synopsis, 3 sample chapters and an author bio. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 2-4 weeks to queries, 2 months to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Proofread and edit your material. Be sure you have your submission in the proper format. Read a book about it if you aren’t sure. Nonfiction writers must have appropriate credentials.”

Bradford Literary Agency, 10353 San Diego Mission Road, Suite 333, San Diego CA 92108. bradfordlit.com. Est. 2001. Member agent: Laura Bradford (commercial fiction, romance, mystery, women’s fiction, erotica). Stats: 20% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 10% nonfiction books, 90% novels. Needs: nonfiction (business/economics, child guidance/parenting, current affairs, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, how-to, memoirs, money/finance, popular culture, psychology, religious/inspirational, self-help/personal improvement, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, erotica, ethnic, family saga, historical, humor/satire, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, religious/inspirational, romance, thriller, young adult, women’s, chick lit, psychic/supernatural, inspirational, women’s). This agency is actively seeking romance (including category), romantica, women’s fiction, mystery, thrillers and young adult. Doesn’t want: poetry, short stories, screenplays. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE and include the first 30 pages of completed ms. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 1-4 weeks to queries, 6-8 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions.

Castiglia Literary Agency, 1155 Camino Del Mar, Suite 510, Del Mar CA 92014. Est. 1993. Member of AAR. Member agents: Winifred Golden, Sally Van Haitsma, Julie Castiglia. Stats: Represents 55% nonfiction books, 45% novels. Needs: nonfiction (animals, anthropology/archaeology, biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, ethnic/cultural interests, health/medicine, history, language/literature/criticism, money/finance, nature/environment, psychology, religious/inspirational, science/technology, self-help/personal improvement, women’s issues/studies); fiction (ethnic, literary, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, women’s). Doesn’t want: horror, screenplays, poetry, academic nonfiction. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Returns materials only with SASE. Recent sales: Big Brown by Greg Neimann (Wiley); From Baghdad With Love by Jay Kopelman, with Melinda Roth (Lyons Press); Illuminations by Mark Tompkins (Ten Speed/Celestial Arts); Midnight Brunch by Marta Acosta (S&S); Teardrops by Doug Keister (Gibbs Smith); Orphan’s Journey by Robert Buettner (Little Brown/Orbit). Tips: “Be professional with submissions. Attend workshops and conferences before you approach an agent.”

Charlene Kay Agency, 901 Beaudry St., Suite 6, St. Jean/Richelieu QC, J3A 1C6, Canada. Est. 1992. Signatory of WGA. Director of development: Louise Meyers. Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 50% movie scripts, 50% TV scripts. Needs: feature film, TV scripts, TV movie-of-the-week, episodic drama, sitcom. Subjects include action/adventure, biography/autobiography, family saga, fantasy, psychic/supernatural, romantic comedy, romantic drama, science fiction. This agency is actively seeking “stories that are out of the ordinary; something we don’t see too often. A well-written and well-constructed script is important.” Doesn’t want: thrillers, barbaric/erotic films, novels, books. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE and outline/proposal. Responds in approx. 6 weeks to queries. No material submission unless previously solicited by agency. Tips: “This agency is on the WGA lists, and query letters arrive by the dozens every week. As our present clients understand, success comes with patience. A sale rarely happens overnight, especially when you’re dealing with totally unknown writers. We’re not impressed by the credentials of a writer—amateur or professional—or by his/her pitching techniques, but by his/her story ideas and ability to build a well-crafted script.”

Dunham Literary Agency, 156 Fifth Ave., Suite 625, New York NY 10010-7002. dunhamlit.com. Est. 2000. Member of AAR. Member agent: Jennie Dunham. Stats: 15% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 25% nonfiction books, 25% novels, 50% juvenile books. Needs: short-story collections; juvenile books; nonfiction (anthropology/archaeology, biography/autobiography, ethnic/cultural interests, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, language/literature/criticism, nature/environment, popular culture, psychology, science/technology, women’s issues/studies); fiction (ethnic, juvenile, literary, mainstream/contemporary, picture books, young adult). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Responds in 1 week to queries, 2 months to mss. Recent sales: America the Beautiful by Robert Sabuda (Little Simon); Dahlia by Barbara McClintock (FSG); Living Dead Girl by Tod Goldberg (Soho Press); In My Mother’s House by Margaret McMullan (Thomas Dunne Books); Black Hawk Down by Mark Bowden (Corgi Adult); Look Back All the Green Valley by Fred Chappell (Picador); Under a Wing by Reeve Lindbergh (Simon & Schuster); I Am Madame Xby Gioia Diliberto (Scribner).

Dystel & Goderich Literary Management, 1 Union Square W., Suite 904, New York NY 10003. dystel.com. Est. 1994. Member of AAR. Member agents: Stacey Glick, Jane Dystel, Miriam Goderich, Michael Bourret, Jim McCarthy, Lauren Abramo, Adina Kahn. Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 65% nonfiction books, 25% novels, 10% cookbooks. Needs: cookbooks; nonfiction (animals, anthropology/archaeology, biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, education, ethnic/cultural interests, gay/lesbian issues, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, humor/satire, military/war, money/finance, new age/metaphysics, popular culture, psychology, religious/inspirational, science/technology, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, ethnic, family saga, gay/lesbian, literary, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, thriller). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 1 month to queries, 6 weeks to mss. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Work on sending professional, well-written queries that are concise and addressed to the specific agent the author is contacting. No dear Sirs/Madam.”

Farris Literary Agency, P.O. Box 570069, Dallas TX 75357. farrisliterary.com. Est. 2002. Member agents: Mike Farris, Susan Morgan Farris. Stats: 60% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 40% nonfiction books, 60% novels. Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, how-to, humor/satire, memoirs, military/war, music/dance, popular culture, religious/inspirational, self-help/personal improvement, sports, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, historical, humor/satire, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, religious/inspirational, romance, sports, thriller, Westerns/frontier). Doesn’t want: science fiction, fantasy, gay and lesbian, erotica, young adult, children’s. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 2-3 weeks to queries, 4-8 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “We specialize in both fiction and nonfiction books. We’re particularly interested in discovering unpublished authors. We adhere to AAR guidelines.”

Greystone Literary Agency, 1512 Allison St., N.W., Washington DC 20011. greystonelit.com. Est. 2003. Member agent: Michael Mancilla. Stats: 25% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 60% nonfiction books, 15% novels, 25% juvenile books. Needs: This agency is looking for nonfiction in the following subjects: psychology, health, self-help, social justice, ethnic, gay/lesbian, biography, popular science, spirituality, history, culture, business, sexuality, relationships, parenting. Doesn’t want: poetry, fiction, screenplays. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 1 week to queries, 4-6 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. When submitting by e-mail, type “nonfiction” in the subject line. Recent sales: The Boys and the Bees by Joe Babcock (Carroll & Graf); A Death at the Rose Paperworks by MJ Zellnik (Midnight Ink); The Everything Seed by Carole Martignacco, illustrated by Joy Troyer (Tricycle Press); The Two Second Commute: A Career in Virtual Assistance by Christine Durst and Michael Haaren (Career Press). Tips:“Effective January 1, 2008, our new address will be 437 New York Ave., Suite 211, Washington, D.C. 20001.”

JABberwocky Literary Agency, P.O. Box 4558, Sunnyside NY 11104-0558. awfulagent.com. Est. 1994. Member agent: Joshua Bilmes. Stats: 15% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 15% nonfiction books, 75% novels, 5% scholarly books, 5% other. Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, cooking/foods/nutrition, current affairs, gay/lesbian issues, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, humor/satire, language/literature/criticism, military/war, money/finance, nature/environment, popular culture, science/technology, sociology, sports, theater/film, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, contemporary issues, detective/police/crime, ethnic, family saga, fantasy, gay/lesbian, glitz, historical, horror, humor/satire, literary, mainstream/contemporary, psychic/supernatural, regional, science fiction, sports, thriller). This agency represents quite a lot of genre fiction and is actively seeking to increase the amount of nonfiction projects. It doesn’t handle juvenile or young adult. Doesn’t want: poetry, articles, short fiction. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Do not send mss unless requested. Responds in 2 weeks to queries. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Recent sales: All Together Dead by Charlaine Harris (Ace); Command Decision by Elizabeth Moon (Del Rey); Poltergeist by Kat Richardson (Ace); Mistborn series and Alcatraz series by Brandon Sanderson (Scholastic). Tips: “In approaching with a query, the most important things to me are your credits and your biographical background to the extent it’s relevant to your work. I (and most agents) will ignore the adjectives you may choose to describe your own work.”

JET Literary Associates, 2570 Camino San Patricio, Santa Fe NM 87505. jetliterary.com. Est. 1975. Member agents: Liz Trupin-Pulli (adult and YA fiction/nonfiction, romance, mysteries, parenting); Jim Trupin (adult fiction/nonfiction, military history, pop culture). Stats: 35% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Needs: short-story collections; nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, current affairs, ethnic/cultural interests, gay/lesbian issues, government/politics/law, humor/satire, memoirs, military/war, popular culture, sports, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, erotica, ethnic, gay/lesbian, glitz, historical, humor/satire, literary, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, romance, thriller, young adult, women’s). Doesn’t want: sci-fi, fantasy, horror, poetry, children’s, religious. How to contact: An e-query is preferred; if sending by snail mail, include an SASE. Responds in 1 week to queries, 8 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Tips: “Don’t write ?cute’ queries—stick to a straightforward message that includes the title and what your book is about, why you’re suited to write this particular book, and what you’ve written in the past (if anything), along with a bit of a bio.”

Jill Grinberg Literary Agency, 244 Fifth Ave., Floor 11, New York NY 10001. grinbergliterary.com. Member agents: Jill Grinberg, Kirsten Wolf (foreign rights). Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, current affairs, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, multicultural, psychology, science/technology, spirituality, travel, women’s issues/studies); fiction (fantasy, historical, romance, science fiction, young adult, women’s, literary fiction, commercial fiction, children’s, middle grade). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE and résumé. Send a proposal and résumé for nonfiction; send a query, synopsis and the first 50 pages for fiction. Recent sales: Red Sky in Mourning by Jill Grinberg (Hyperion); Strange Angel by George Pendle (Harcourt); Jesse James: Last Rebel of the Civil War by T.J. Stiles (Vintage); Searching for El Doradoby Marc Herman (Nan A. Talese).

Keller Media, 23852 West Pacific Coast Highway, Suite 701, Malibu CA 90265. KellerMedia.com. Est. 1989. Member agents: Wendy Keller, senior agent. Stats: 65% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Needs: nonfiction (agriculture/horticulture, animals, anthropology/archaeology, biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, current affairs, education, ethnic/cultural interests, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, how-to, language/literature/criticism, memoirs, money/finance, nature/environment, new age/metaphysics, popular culture, psychology, religious/inspirational, science/technology, self-help/personal improvement, sociology, women’s issues/studies). “We focus a great deal of attention on authors who want to also become paid professional speakers, and speakers who want to become authors.” Doesn’t want: fiction (except for well-researched, well-plotted historical fiction); scripts; teleplays; poetry; juvenile; anything Christian; picture books; illustrated books; first-person stories of mental or physical illness, wrongful incarceration or abduction by aliens; books channeled by aliens/demons/dead relatives/dead celebrities; books your mother/grandma/best friend told you “really should get written”; stories relayed by animals that you typed on their behalf; books that you personally “guarantee” will be bestsellers because some living, dead, or supernatural third party or Tarot deck said it would; any query letter that starts with the words ?God told me you’d represent me ?’ ” How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Include a proposal package, author bio and the first chapter or whatever is most prescriptive in the book. Include marketing plans. Also accepts fax and e-queries. Responds in up to 7 days to queries, up to 2 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips:“Know that the person you’re querying really does the type of book you’re writing. Eighty percent of what we reject is because it doesn’t fit our established, advertised, printed, touted guidelines. Be organized! Have your proposal in order. Never make apologies for ?bad writing’ or sloppy content—get it right before you waste your one shot with us. Write a solid proposal. If you don’t know how, learn. It’s not rocket science! Be credentialed in what you’re writing about. I can’t sell your book unless I’m convinced you actually know what you’re talking about and can prove it. Realize this: If your content is strong and your credentials are powerful, agents will be fighting over you. If we’re not, there’s usually a good reason. Figure it out, fix the problem and try again. We discard all fiction. Nonfiction will be returned with a SASE.”

Kleinworks Agency, 2814 Brooks Ave., No. 635, Missoula MT 59801. kleinworks.com. Est. 2005. Member agent: Judy Klein. Stats: Represents 25% nonfiction books, 50% novels, 25% juvenile books. Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, health/medicine, how-to, memoirs, money/finance, nature/environment, popular culture, self-help/personal improvement); fiction (ethnic, experimental, humor/satire, literary, young adult, women’s/chick lit). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Include a proposal package, outline/proposal, synopsis, author bio and sample chapters. Also accepts fax and e-queries. Responds in 2-3 weeks to queries, 1-2 months to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. No unsolicited manuscripts. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Kleinworks Agency may be geographically removed from the red-hot center of New York publishing, but our credentials and connections keep us close to New York’s best publishers and editors. As a publishing veteran with two decades of book experience, intimate knowledge of the industry, and expertise in domestic and international negotiations, I provide my clients with an edge in getting their books published well. It allows me to make not only the best deals but also the right deals. Kleinworksoffers dedicated services to a small, select group of writers and publishers, so we can guarantee spirited and undivided attention.”

LeatherBoundWords, 1493 Campton Court, St. Louis MO 63368. leatherboundwords.com. Est. 2004. Member agent: Thomas Grady. Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 100% nonfiction books. Needs: nonfiction (business/economics, money/finance, economics, any topic related directly to baby boomers). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Submit a synopsis, author bio and SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 5-10 days to queries, 3 months to mss. Doesn’t return submissions. Accepts simultaneous submissions.

MacGregor Literary, 2373 N.W. 185th Ave., Suite 165, Hillsboro OR 97214. macgregorliterary.com. Signatory of WGA. Member agent: Chip MacGregor. Stats: 10% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 40% nonfiction books, 60% novels. Needs: nonfiction (biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, current affairs, history, how-to, humor/satire, popular culture, religious/inspirational [and inspirational], self-help/personal improvement, sports); fiction (detective/police/crime, historical, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, religious/inspirational, romance, thriller, women’s/chick lit). This agency is actively seeking authors with a Christian worldview and a growing platform. Doesn’t want: fantasy, sci-fi, children’s books, poetry, screenplays. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 3 weeks to queries. Doesn’t return submissions. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Seriously consider attending a good writing conference. It will give you the chance to be face to face with people in the industry. Also, if you’re a novelist, consider joining one of the national writing organizations. The American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) is a wonderful group for new as well as established writers. And if you’re a Christian writer of any kind, check into The Writers View, an online writing group. All of these have proven helpful to writers.”

Nelson Literary Agency, 1732 Wazee St., Suite 207, Denver CO 80202. nelsonagency.com. Est. 2002. Member of AAR. Member agent: Kristin Nelson. Needs: novels (commercial, women’s, romance, science fiction, fantasy, young adult); high-caliber literary fiction; memoirs; narrative nonfiction. Doesn’t want: short-story collections, mysteries (except chick lit), thrillers, Christian, horror, children’s picture books. How to contact: Query by e-mail only. Recent sales: Schemes of Love by Sherry Thomas (Bantam Dell); The Camelot Code by Mari Mancusi (Dutton Children’s); Magic Lost, Trouble Found by Lisa Shearin (Ace); Magellan’s Witch by Carolyn Jewel (Hachette/Warner); No Place Safe by Kim Reid (Kensington); Plan B by Jennifer O’Connell (MTV/Pocket Books); Code of Love by Cheryl Sawyer (NAL/Penguin Group); Once Upon Stilettos by Shanna Swendson (Ballantine); I’d Tell You I Love You But Then I’d Have to Kill You by Ally Carter (Hyperion Children’s); An Accidental Goddessby Linnea Sinclair (Bantam Spectra).

Northern Lights Literary Services, 306 North Center Valley Road, Sandpoint ID 83864. northernlightsls.com. Est. 2005. Member agents: Sammie Justesen (fiction and nonfiction); Vorris Dee Justesen (business and current affairs). Stats: 35% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 90% nonfiction books, 10% novels. Needs: nonfiction (animals, biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, cooking/foods/nutrition, crafts/hobbies, current affairs, ethnic/cultural interests, health/medicine, how-to, memoirs, nature/environment, new age/metaphysics, popular culture, psychology, religious/inspirational, self-help/personal improvement, sports, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, ethnic, family saga, feminist, glitz, historical, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, psychic/supernatural, regional, religious/inspirational, romance, thriller, women’s). How to contact: Query by mail with SASE, outline/proposal, synopsis, 3 sample chapters and author bio. E-queries preferred. Responds in 2 months to queries, 2 months to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Recent sales: Unraveling the Mystery of Fibroamyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome by Daniel Dantini (Addicus); Boots ?N Beans by Roy “Boots” Reynolds (Keokee); Special Effects by Michael Slone (Michael Wiese Productions); Rearview Regrets: Tips to Avoid Ticket Trouble With the Cops by Steve Pomper (Lyons Press). Tips:“If you’re fortunate enough to find an agent who answers your query and asks for a printed manuscript, always include a letter and cover page containing your name, physical address, e-mail address and phone number. Be professional!”

The Rudy Agency, 825 Wildlife Lane, Estes Park CO 80517. rudyagency.com. Est. 2003. Member agent: Maryann Karinch. Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Needs: nonfiction (anthropology/archaeology, biography/autobiography, business/economics, child guidance/parenting, computers/electronic, current affairs, education, ethnic/cultural interests, gay/lesbian issues, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, how-to, language/literature/criticism, memoirs, military/war, money/finance, music/dance, nature/environment, popular culture, psychology, science/technology, self-help/personal improvement, sociology, sports, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies). This agency is actively seeking projects with social value, projects that open minds to new ideas and interesting lives, and projects that entertain through good storytelling. Doesn’t want: “poetry, children’s/juvenile books, screenplays/plays, art/photo books, novels/novellas, religion books, joke books, books that fit in to the impulse buy/gift book category.” How to contact: “Query us. If we like the query, we’ll invite a complete proposal.” Accepts queries by mail, e-mail or fax. Responds in up to 8 weeks to mss. Returns materials only with SASE. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Present yourself professionally. I tell people all the time: Subscribe to Writer’s Digest(I do) because you’ll get good advice about how to approach an agent.”

Sligo Literary Agency, 425 Poa Place, San Luis Obispo CA 93405. sligolitagency.com. Est. 1997. Member agents: Eric Bollinger (fiction and nonfiction); Bill Dawson (fiction); Jydith Markham (fiction); Wanda Shaw (nonfiction). Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 50% nonfiction books, 50% novels. Needs: nonfiction (biography/auto-biography, business/economics, current affairs, education, gay/lesbian issues, government/politics/law, how-to, humor/satire, memoirs, self-help/personal improvement, sports, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, detective/police/crime, erotica, feminist, gay/lesbian, glitz, literary, mainstream/contemporary, mystery/suspense, romance, thriller, women’s). Doesn’t want: children’s, poetry, cookbooks, short stories. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Include a proposal package, synopsis and author bio. Also accepts e-queries. Responds in 2 weeks to mss. Accepts simultaneous submissions. Tips: “Read our submission guidelines prior to making a submission.”

Ted Weinstein Literary Management, 307 Seventh Ave., Suite 2407, Dept. GLA, New York NY 10001. twliterary.com. Est. 2001. Member of AAR. Member agent: Ted Weinstein. Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 100% nonfiction books. Needs: nonfiction books by a wide range of journalists, academics and other experts (biography/autobiography, business/economics, current affairs, government/politics/law, health/medicine, history, popular culture, science/technology, self-help/personal improvement, travel, lifestyle, narrative journalism, popular science). How to contact: Visit the website for detailed guidelines before submitting. Accepts e-queries only. Responds in 3 weeks to queries.

Writers House, 21 W. 26th St., New York NY 10010. writershouse.com. Est. 1974. Member of AAR. Member agents: Albert Zuckerman (major novels, thrillers, women’s fiction, important nonfiction); Amy Berkower (major juvenile authors, women’s fiction, art/decorating, psychology); Merrilee Heifetz (quality children’s fiction, science fiction/fantasy, popular culture, literary fiction); Susan Cohen (juvenile/young-adult fiction and nonfiction, Judaism, women’s issues); Susan Ginsburg (serious and popular fiction, true crime, narrative nonfiction, personality books, cookbooks); Michele Rubin (serious nonfiction); Robin Rue (commercial fiction and nonfiction, young-adult fiction); Jodi Reamer (juvenile/young-adult fiction and nonfiction, adult commercial fiction, popular culture); Simon Lipskar (literary and commercial fiction, narrative nonfiction); Steven Malk (juvenile/young-adult fiction and nonfiction); Dan Lazar (commercial and literary fiction, pop culture, narrative nonfiction, women’s interest, memoirs, Judaica and humor); Rebecca Sherman (juvenile, young adult); Ken Wright (juvenile, young adult). Stats: 50% of clients are new/unpublished writers. Represents 25% nonfiction books, 40% novels, 35% juvenile books. Needs: nonfiction (animals, art/architecture/design, biography/autobiography business/economics, child guidance/parenting, cooking/foods/nutrition health/medicine, history, humor/satire, interior design/decorating, juvenile nonfiction, military/war, money/finance, music/dance, nature/environment, psychology, science/technology, self-help/personal, improvement, theater/film, true crime/investigative, women’s issues/studies); fiction (action/adventure, contemporary issues, detective/police/crime, erotica, ethnic, family saga, fantasy, feminist, gay/lesbian, gothic, hi-lo, historical, horror, humor/satire, juvenile, literary, mainstream/contemporary, military/war, multicultural, mystery/suspense, new age/metaphysical, occult, picture books, psychic/supernatural, regional, romance, science fiction, short story collections, spiritual, sports, thriller, translation, Westerns/frontier, young adult, women’s, cartoon). Doesn’t want: scholarly, professional, poetry, plays, screenplays. How to contact: Query by mail with SASE. Responds in 1 month to queries. Recent sales: Moneyball by Michael Lewis (Norton); Cut and Run by Ridley Pearson (Hyperion); Report From Ground Zero by Dennis Smith (Viking); Northern Lights by Nora Roberts (Penguin/Putnam); Captain Underpants series by Dav Pilkey (Scholastic); Junie B. Jones series, by Barbara Park (Random House). Tips:“Don’t send manuscripts. Write a compelling letter. If you do, we’ll ask to see your work.”

 

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