Posted in Agent Showcase

Fall Fiction Fest, BRINGING BACK DANIEL COHEN, Adult Contemporary Fantasy OV


Genre: Adult Contemporary Fantasy, Own Voices

Word Count: 101,000

How I fell for writing: My grandfather was a great storyteller. He inspired me to create my own stories and put them on paper. When I was 13, a beloved family member became very ill. In order to deal with my fear of losing her, I started writing more. She overcame her illness, and I overcame my depression with the help of the written word.

Dear Agent,

Lerin the Fix-Wiz, an immortal Jewish magician, is tired from years wandering the world, constantly changing aliases and looks. He just wants to remember the man he used to be and the family he left behind, find the island from his dreams, and disappear. But he can’t. Bound to his eternal contract with the malicious WWII General Dolen, the captor of his stolen memories, Lerin is forced to collect people’s pains and give them to his boss.

Along with his assistant and bestie Moiko—a melodramatic, foul-mouthed white magician’s rabbit—and a red, magical chest, Lerin finds himself on the road. Again. This time, it’s hipster Berlin, where four clients have booked his Quick-Fix services. After his street magic show in Alexanderplatz, he is approached by a woman who claims to know who he really is and how he can obtain his old memories and freedom. All he has to do is take the pain away from four individuals and deliver them to her employer, Mr. A.

The catch? Not only are these the four clients General Dolen is after, but their pains are the last he and his nemesis, Mr. A, need to execute their plans. The results of which may bring a deadly virus to Earth and turn people into emotionless, blood-thirsty monsters. Torn between his desire to trust the red-headed woman and remember Daniel Cohen—his true identity— Lerin finds himself in a lose-lose situation: his freedom might lead to the end of humanity.

An Israeli-German writer, I’ve recently returned to Israel after four years in Berlin. Having studied business anthropology, traveled the world alone, and lived on four continents, cultures play a big role in my writing. My short stories and journalistic articles had been published both online and in print.

Thank you very much for your time and consideration.

First 250 words:

It was already getting warm outside when Lerin made his way up the narrow dusty trail. Every step was a struggle for his straining calf muscles, and the ground was almost too hot to walk upon. He followed the spiral path up on the steep cliff and wiped the sweat from his forehead with a stained handkerchief. The rays of sunlight, those endless sky-piercing swords, seemed to wink at him, as if encouraging him to go on. The higher he climbed, the better he could see the great blue open out before him. In this quiet afternoon hour, there was no living soul around. The ocean was his and his alone. When he reached the peak, the world he had once lost revealed itself to him in its renewed creation: silent waters, cloudless skies, and the lonely ridge. He sat on the edge, his feet dangling in the air, and looked down at the deep abyss. Far below lay the ocean in its siesta-like stillness. Every now and again, a few hungry seagulls disrupted its slumber, diving into its waters and coming back up with fluttering fish.

A joyful surge filled his heart. The sea always made him happy. He took a deep breath as if it were his first in this world. Heavy footsteps thumped in the distance. They crushed whatever came their way and grew louder and closer. The ground shook and started crumbling around him. He didn’t need to look to know who was standing behind him.

Posted in Agent Showcase



Genre: MG Horror Ownvoices

Word Count: 53,000 words

How Did You Fall for Writing: I started writing a short story that turned into a novella, but the story didn’t end there—it went on to become my first novel!


Dear agent,

NAKIA WHO FOUGHT FEAR ITSELF is a middle grade horror #ownvoices novel which can be described as STEPHEN KING’s IT with a MUSLIM MC set in SINGAPORE.

Nakia’s family is a mess: her papa’s deep in debt, the bank wants to kick them out of their house, and her mama’s left home.

Nakia figures that if she can just get some cash, everything will be fine. She stumbles upon the location of a mythical statue and tries to sell it online to fix her family’s money problems.

A mysterious entity called Deva-Asura breaks free from the statue and possesses her sister. Deva-Asura isn’t the type of ghost to flicker lights and break a few glasses—it shows people their worst fears, as if they’re living in their own personal horror movie.

It holds her parents hostage inside a hospital. The police can’t get through to them because each time they try, they too experience horrific visions of demons, monsters and ghosts.

Now it’s up to Nakia, who’s got twenty-four hours to figure out what Deva-Asura is, why it’s holding her parents and the others hostage, and most importantly, find a way to kick its butt before it kills everyone. Just as she’s about to give up hope, a spirit brings her to the Akashic Records in the astral plane, where she learns about a magical sword, armor, light and fire that can defeat Deva-Asura.

There’s only one teeny-weeny problem—the magical items are hidden in different parts of the hospital. To get them, Nakia must face each of her own fears or live out her worst nightmares forever…

This is an #ownvoices manuscript because I am a Singaporean Indian Muslim and Nakia’s character is partially based on my experiences.

Thank you!

First 250 words

By the time the man gave up the search for the statue and left the pit, it was already maghrib, the hour when the sun slipped away into the horizon and spirits prowled for fresh victims to possess. Shadows gathered deep in the heart of MacRitchie forest, the home of pontianaks—female vampiric ghosts.

I rushed from my hiding place behind the banyan tree to the edge of the large pit. It was a few meters deep, but if the big guy I’d just seen climb out could do it, it should be easy peasy for a short, skinny girl like me. I sat down, took a deep breath, pressed my hands against the ground and slid down the wall of dirt.

My phone’s thin beam of light couldn’t cut the growing gloom that pressed on me from all sides. I circled the pit three times. Each time, I scrutinized every inch and occasionally dug out chunks of dirt with my small garden spade. No sign of the statue.

Ka-Boom! Lightning struck one of the mud walls.

I froze, one hand on my old phone and the other on the handle of the spade. My heart rat-a-tatted in my chest. Just a lightning storm. No big deal. Happened all the time in Singapore. When my heart finally chillaxed, my brain started functioning. There had to be something in that wall that attracted the lightning. Yes! I fist pumped the air.

Posted in Agent Showcase

Fall Fiction Fest, KOLGRIM, MG Modern Fantasy


Genre: Middle-grade Modern Fantasy

Word Count: 38,500

How did you Fall for Writing: I began writing in 2nd grade after my teacher made me read an assignment aloud to the first grade class. I have been writing and telling stories in front of people ever since.


Dear Agent:

13-year-old Trevor can turn into a minotaur. Yep, a seven-foot-tall, bull-headed monster like the one from Greek myths. And until today, he thought he was the only one.

Turns out, several thousand people in the world have the ability to transmogrify—or mog, as he likes to call it—into a mythical, extinct, or just plain weird monster of some kind. His dad can turn into a freaking mammoth! But Dad totally took off on Trevor without so much as a note five years ago, leaving Trevor to wonder how—or if—he should use his colossal power. (Like, is it okay for a minotaur to play soccer for the school team?)

(Um, no.)

Trevor learns from another mog that his dad is being held prisoner by the government. They’re running terrible experiments on him, trying to discover how mogging works…or at least, that’s the story Trevor is told. Trevor lets loose the monster inside to save his father. And man, is it FUN!

But! (you knew that was coming)…one of his closest allies betrays him to the people running the experiments—the same people who know Trevor is the key to their dominion of the entire world.

Whether he’s fighting a medusa, a triceratops, or a giant purple dragon, Trevor’s got his super-hero work cut out for him. Even when he’s seven feet tall, though, Trevor is in trouble way over his head (and horns), with not just his own life at stake, but the fate of everyone on planet Earth.

And, plus? He’s got soccer practice to think about. Ugh.

KOLGRIM is a 38,500-word middle grade modern fantasy. My novel ZERO was named a Best Book of 2013 by ALA/YALSA, and I am a recent Bram Stoker Award finalist for my novel HELLWORLD.

Thank you for your time, I look forward to hearing from you.

First 250:

I turned into a minotaur for the first time when I was seven years old.

If you haven’t gotten to the Greek myths part of English class yet, just Google “minotaur.” You’ll see right away what I can transmogrify into. Transmogrify means “change,” but I usually just think of it as “mogging.”

Anyway, a minotaur is basically this giant dude with muscles like Thor, but with the head of a bull. He’s super strong and super scary. Which makes it sound like I’m a super hero, except . . . I’m not.

I mean, I want to be, but it’s tougher than you’d think.

I don’t mog very often because there aren’t a lot of minotaurs running around town and I know from movies that there are probably people who’d want to do a bunch of awful tests on me if they knew about Kolgrim. That’s what I call him: Kolgrim. It doesn’t mean anything, I just thought it sounded cooler than my own name, Trevor. I mean, how many superhero movies have a guy in uniform screaming into a red phone, “Earth is in danger! Get me TREVOR!”

Right. Not too many.

Up until seventh grade, I assumed I was some kind of mutant freak or maybe an alien or something, since I was the only mog I’d ever heard of.

Turns out I was kinda sorta wrong about that. Wrong about my dad; about my best friend; about good guys versus bad guys . . .

I was wrong about a lot.

Posted in Agent Showcase



(Winter is coming)


It’s time to announce my team for FALL FICTION FEST!

Amy & Michelle’s teams can be found by clicking on their names.

I hope everyone has gotten something out of the contest, even if they don’t see themselves below. Contests are more than just making it into the agent round. They’re a chance to network with other authors. A chance to find your people.

We received 300+ entries, and it was a challenge trying to pick just 12. 12! I truly wanted to pick everyone. I was blown away by how awesome you all are. It took me days to narrow down 100, then to 50, and then, I had to make more painful decisions. I’ve been there, hoping I’d get into a contest, and I wanted to give this chance to all of you.

But remember, this isn’t your only opportunity to get your book in front of agents. Query them. Take part in Twitter pitch contests (which is how I found my agent). Everyone’s journey is different, and there’s no deadline. Keep trying, and you’ll see your dreams come true.



Here are the entries for TEAM MERRY:


Middle Grade:

KOLGRIM—Upper MG Fantasy



Young Adult:




THE EMPRESS OF NEEDLES & SKIN—Fantasy (ownvoices)


VIVA LA VALLIANTS—Speculative Fiction/LGBTQ (ownvoices)



BLOOD SONG—Gothic Fantasy Romance

BRINGING BACK DANIEL COHEN—Contemporary Low Fantasy (ownvoices)

MINIMUM VIABLE PLANET—Science Fiction (ownvoices)

THE EYES OF FIRE—Epic Fantasy (ownvoices)


Mentors will be contacting you soon, but give them a few days to get in touch.


Send your revised entry back to me no later than November 24 at 11:00 pm EST (please send them to sunversussnow (at) yahoo (dot) com). Then I’ll have time to get them ready for the agent round. Please use the exact same format and don’t forget your FALL FICTION FEST question.


Please find me on Twitter (@marty_mayberry) so I can add you to

my Team Merry list before the agent round!


I hope everyone sticks around to party.

And join me in rooting for Team Merry to get the most requests.


Bring it, Michelle & Amy! 😊




Posted in Agent Showcase

Fall Fiction Fest: How about a Twitter Party?

Announcing the Fall Fiction Fest Twitter Party!


Waiting may be the toughest part of publishing, and we hate that you’ll have to wait to find out who got into Fall Fiction Fest.

To help the time skip by, let’s keep the #FallFest lively.

Here are the party topics (Don’t forget to use the hashtag #FallFest!):

October 31: Shout out the genre and age category you’re sending. Shout out if you got in.

November 1: Tell us the first line of your MS

November 2: What’s your main character’s favorite movie, and why?

November 3: Any animals in your MS? If so, what kind and what is/are their names?

November 4: Is this your first MS or…?

November 5: How many povs are there in your MS, and why did you choose that number?

November 6: Is your book in first person, second or third? Past or present? ALSO: Today is the day to VOTE (unless you’ve done so already). Don’t forget to tweet out your I VOTED sticker or encourage others to vote. If we see enough tweets, we’ll give extra entries to the contest!

November 7: When did you know you HAD to be a writer?

November 8: Tell us a little about your villain (if you have one)

November 9: What’s your main character’s favorite color and why?

November 10: What’s your favorite line from your MS?

November 11: Sun or snow (in memory of the older contest). Which would your MC prefer and why?

November 12: Tell us why you decided to write the story you entered.

November 13: What’s your most troublesome crutch word?

November 14: If your MC was going on a dream vacation, where would they go?

November 15: What’s your MC’s zodiac sign?

November 16: If you MC could have one wish fulfilled, what would it be?

November 17: Coffee or tea or neither?

November 18: Is your MC into sports? If so, which ones? Any favorite team?

November 19: Picks are announced! Final tweet party topic: What pumpkin spice is in your MS?


Posted in Agent Showcase

FALL FICTION FEST Rules (get ready!)

The submission window for Fall Fiction Fest opens tomorrow, October 31st, at 4:00 pm EST! 

The instructions and rules for entry are below.
No need to rush. We will be open for 24 hours. That’s right, submissions can be sent on Halloween or All Saints Day, depending on whether you’re feeling saintly or slightly more evil.
Please don’t enter early or your entry will be deleted. You can resend at the proper time if this happens accidentally. Confirmation emails will be sent. If you don’t receive one, don’t resend. We don’t want duplicate entries. Please check with us on Twitter first to confirm your entry did or did not arrive, then you may resend. 
There is only ONE, yes that’s right, ONE entry per person allowed. Any attempt to cheat will result in entries being thrown out. This contest is only for finished and polished stories. 
Important note: The story can’t have been in the agent round of any other contest in the last three months. This doesn’t mean twitter pitch events with hashtags, but multiple agent blog contests. If you entered Pitchwars and didn’t get a mentor, we welcome you. 

Though we love picture books, Michelle holds special contests just for them. We do accept all MG, YA, NA and Adult genres, excluding erotica. We’d like you to be followers of our blogs. Click the “follow” button on my blog. You can find Amy’s blog here and Marty’s blog here. If following our blogs doesn’t work, follow us on twitter or sign up for our newsletters instead. Don’t sweat this. Do your best.  

The Format:
Send submission to Sunversussnow (at) yahoo (dot) com. (Yep, we’re recycling the address.) Only one submission per person is allowed. It doesn’t matter if you write under different names or are submitting different manuscripts. You are still one person and get one entry.
Here’s how it should be formatted (yes, include the bolded!) Please use Times New Roman (or equivalent), 12 pt font, single-spaced, and put spaces between paragraphs. No indents or tabs are needed. No worries if your gmail doesn’t have Times New Roman. No worries if the email messes up your format. Yes, we will still read it! 🙂  
(Here’s a trick to keep your paragraph spacing: copy and paste your entry into your email and then put in the line spaces. They seem to get lost when you copy and paste. It may look right but sending scrambles the spacing.)
Subject Line: Fall Fest: TITLE, Age Category + Genre
(example: Fall Fest: GRUDGING, Adult Epic Fantasy)
In The Email:
Title: MY FANTASTIC BOOK (yes, caps!)
Genre: YA dystopian Ownvoices (Age category and genre. Add “Ownvoices” here if it applies)
Word Count: XX,XXX (round to the nearest thousand)
Twitter Handle: (Optional so we can contact you. Will not be public.)

How Did You Fall for Writing: (Share your origin story in 100 words or less.) My husband dared me that I couldn’t write a book. And–ta-da–I could!
Query goes here! Include greeting and main paragraphs. You may include bio, closing, but not the word count + genre. We already have that. You may include comps if you’d like. There is no word count limit on the query but please aim for 250 – 300 words.
You may include if your story is OwnVoices or otherwise has diversity up in the genre line and in the query. 
Remember a query has several paragraphs with spaces. Don’t send us a pitch.  
First 250 words:
Here are the first 250 words of my manuscript, and I will not end in the middle of a sentence. But I will not go over 257 words. Be reasonable and don’t make us count. Don’t forget to space between paragraphs! No indents!
So that’s it. See you at 4:00 pm Eastern time on Halloween. Good luck!
Now for the fun stuff!
Watch on Wednesday for our Twitter Party!  We’ll have a list of daily topics to talk about on twitter under #FallFest.
Also join us for a very special party on November 6th! That’s when we’ll try to get 100 voters to give us shout outs and blow this contest wide open! 
And you can scroll down on this blog to see the posts about mentors, agents, and all the dates of Fall Fiction Fest, as well as our special November 6th bonus opportunity. 
Posted in Agent Showcase

Fall Fiction Fest: Time to meet the mentors!

FALL FICTION FEST is right around the corner, and we’ve rounded up some

AWESOME mentors

who will help authors selected in the contest. (For more details about the contest,

please see a few posts below this one).


More mentors can be found on Amy & Michelle’s blogs.

Without further ado, let me introduce to some of the Fall Fiction Fest mentors!

Victoria Gilbert

Raised in a historic small town in the shadow of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Victoria turned her early obsession with books into a dual career as an author and librarian.

Victoria’s first cozy mystery series, the Blue Ridge Library Mystery series, garnered her a three-book deal with Crooked Lane Books. The first two books in the series have been optioned by Sony Pictures Television, and were produced in audiobook by Tantor Media. A MURDER FOR THE BOOKS, the first book in the series, was a Southern Independent Booksellers “Okra Pick” and was longlisted for a Southern Book Prize.

Victoria is a member of Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, and Sisters in Crime. She also has written and published SFF under another penname – Vicki L. Weavil.



Facebook author page:




Anne Raven

Anne Raven was born and raised along the windy coast of South Africa, and can assure everyone there are no lions roaming the streets—unless you count the feral cat next door. When not reading or writing, you’ll find her being bossed around by her adorable niece, taking freshly baked goods from the oven, or drinking too much coffee. Her romantic suspense IN THE NAME OF THE MOTHER was showcased in Pitch Wars 2017. Anne is represented by Amanda Jain at BookEnds Literary Agency.

Renée A. Price


Renée A. Price is a Brazilian lawyer and author passionate about South America, its people and cultures. When she isn’t writing awesome Latinx characters, she’s reading, walking her dog, or trying to convince her husband to spend the rest of the weekend eating popcorn and watching movies with too much special effects. She is a gif and emoji addict, a romance fanatic, and a strong believer that shipping is an art form. If you can’t travel to Curitiba/Brazil, the best place to find her is on Twitter.

Renée is represented by Tricia Skinner at Fuse Literary.



Michelle Mason

Michelle worked for 10 years as a PR manager promoting everything from forklift rodeos to Hotel Olympics, before deciding to stay home and write full-time. She has completed five young adult and two middle grade novels and is represented by Elizabeth Bewley at Sterling Lord Literistic. She’s a member of SCBWI.

She has a bachelor’s degree from Baylor University, where she majored in English literature and minored in public relations. She also holds the Accredited in Public Relations designation from the Public Relations Society of America.

She lives in St. Louis with her husband, two kids, one dog, two cats, and a guinea pig. In her free time, she reads, watches too much TV, cross-stitches, volunteers at her kids’ school, bake amazing brownies, and plays the violin both in a community orchestra and at church.


Kelly Proctor

KD Proctor loved college so much that when it came time to graduate, she didn’t want to leave. Finding her niche in graduate school, she traded her textbooks for student handbooks and began a career in College Student Personnel, fulfilling her wish to stay on a college campus forever.  When she took a stab at writing her first novel, her mother rejoiced–she finally had a reason to use that undergraduate degree in English! 

KD is a multi-award winning author who lives in west-central Minnesota with her husband and fur-kids. She likes to write fun twists on the usual tropes that we all love. Her characters are smart, funny, and always swoony. And yes. They always get their happily ever after. 

Richard Pearson

Richard Taylor Pearson is a triple threat: author, actor, and attorney. He grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas, where he appeared in many plays and musicals. After graduating from Rhodes College, Richard went on to obtain a law degree from Rutgers School of Law. While he works as an attorney by day, his nights and weekends are spent writing novels and performing in theatrical events all over New York City. Richard lives in Jersey City with his brilliant husband, Brian, and their amazing daughter, Natalie.

He’s the author of ‘The Role’ a LGBT novel published by 



Kathleen S. Allen

Kathleen has a Master’s in Children’s Literature with an emphasis in creative writing for young adults. She was a theater major as an undergraduate and participated in many productions as an actor both in college and in community theater and a summer repertory company.
She has published poetry, lyric essays, flash fiction, and short stories in various publications.
She has also published with small presses and as an independent author. She has taught English, literature and nursing in public school, community colleges, universities and online. 
And although she no longer practices as a psychiatric nurse practitioner, she does have a nursing doctorate and has published several professional articles on depression including  a chapter on how to write mental illness in fiction (Chapter 16) in the anthology, PUTTING THE SCIENCE IN FICTION published by Writer’s Digest and edited by Dan Koboldt. 
She is represented by Lindsay Leggett of The Rights Factory. 

Emily Moore

E.G. Moore is an award-winning poet and children book author, as well as a freelance writer and editor. She leads her local chapter of the Idaho Writers League. Her essay WEARING TERESA’S BOOTS was featured in Hope Paige’s Anthology on loss BREAKING SAD in 2017. When she’s not telling “Mommy Made stories” to her two daughters or awaiting feedback for her latest manuscript, she can be found off-roading in her suped-up ATV, baking something scrumptious, or in a long, plot-refreshing bubble bath. She’s represented by Jessica Schmeidler of Golden Wheat Literary.
E.G. Moore tweets, posts on Facebook, and blogs on her website.


I’m looking forward to seeing your entry soon in the Fall Fiction inbox! ~Marty

Posted in Agent Showcase

A Little Surprise For Fall Fiction Fest

So Amy, Michelle and I are strong believers in voting. Now more than ever, we think everyone should educate themselves on the issues important to you. And it’s all our duties to let our voices be heard by voting!
No matter whether you stand on the left or right. Voting is crucial to our democracy.
We want to encourage that to happen. And here we have a contest going and the means to provide some incentive.
To that end, Amy, Michelle and I are willing to add an extra pick to our finalists. That’s right! Instead of ten each, we’ll each pick 11 entries to get a mentor and go before the agents! All we need is proof that you care about voting too.
So on November 6, tweet at us with pictures of your voting journey. It can be you and your I voted sticker. You in the car on your way to the polls or driving others. You with yard signs. You putting your absentee ballot in the mail. An image of the line you had to wait in. You pushing your adult kids and husband/wife into the voting booth–just kidding–I don’t think pictures are allowed inside polling places. We don’t want you breaking the laws.
Please don’t share who you voted for. That’s private. Yes we have opinions, but we are not trying to influence you. And we don’t want that as part of the contest. We just want you to vote. The rest of that decision is up to you.
Some kind of photo proof that you filled out a ballot or pulled a lever. Don’t forget to include #FallFest in your tweet and send it out on November 6th.
If we get over 100 of these, then we will add the extra three picks. And to add extra incentive, I want my eleventh pick to come from among the writers who participated. I’ll be looking exclusively among the people who tweeted that they voted to find my last pick.
So get registered if there’s still time in your state.
If you’re from another country or too young, or not allowed to vote, we haven’t forgotten you. Encourage others to vote on the #FallFest hashtag and that will count! Say why you think voting is important.
Hopefully our efforts will go viral and move more than just writers. And who knows, if we get an incredible number, Michelle and Amy may be convinced to go for 12!
Mark your calendars! Let’s vote!
Posted in Agent Showcase

Who are the agents for Fall Fiction Fest?

FALL FICTION FEST is coming up fast!

It’s time to announce the agents! We have 15 agents joining us for this improvised contest. Some are new. Some are established. All are looking to make requests (FROM YOUR query & first page!).

To everyone entering this year, best of luck! The Slush Pile is going to be SUPER competitive

Only a third of the agent list is here. You’ll find the rest on Michelle & Amy’s blogs:

Mentors will be revealed next week, followed by Instructions to Enter. This is not a Twitter pitch event but an online contest where you email your entry. For the announcement post, go here. Remember that submission starts on October 31st

Now, to introduce some of the agents!

Lynette Novak

Prior to joining The Seymour Agency, Lynnette spent seventeen years freelance editing. She worked with new writers, advanced writers, as well as New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors. Lynnette earned a bachelor of education degree from the University of Manitoba, where she specialized in English and French. She excelled in Advanced Creative Writing in university and studied writing for children and teens through the Institute of Children’s Literature. She was a Pitch Wars mentor in 2015 and 2016. Both her mentees acquired an agent.

Although Lynnette was born and raised in Manitoba, Canada, she now lives in Minnesota with her husband, twin girls, and many pets. Her personal interests include reading, writing, exercising at the gym (okay, that’s a love/hate relationship), working on an assortment of crafts, all things having to do with animals (if she could own a farm, zoo, and animal shelter, she would), and enjoying time with family and friends.

In adult fiction, Lynnette is interested in acquiring: thrillers, psychological suspense, fantasy, sci-fi, contemporary romance, romantic comedy, and mysteries (traditional, amateur sleuth, and cozy). In young adult fiction, she is looking for: thrillers, psychological suspense, horror, mysteries, sci-fi, fantasy, historical, and contemporary.  In middle grade fiction: fantasy, sci-fi, action/adventure, mystery, contemporary, horror, and humor.


Follow Lynnette on Twitter: @Lynnette_Novak 


Alec Shane

Alec Shane majored in English at Brown University, a degree he put to immediate use by moving to Los Angeles after graduation to become a professional stunt man. Realizing that he prefers books to breakaway glass, he moved to New York City in 2008 to pursue a career in publishing. Alec quickly found a home at Writers House Literary Agency and is now aggressively building his own list.

On the nonfiction side, Alec would love to see humor, biography, history (particularly military history), true crime, “guy” reads, and all things sports. In fiction, Alec is looking for mystery, thrillers (though he’s experiencing terrorist fatigue at the moment), suspense, horror, historical fiction, literary fiction, and middle grade and young adult fiction.

He doesn’t want Romance, straight sci-fi, high fantasy, picture books, self-help, women’s fiction, food, or travel memoir.

For more information:


Laurel Symonds

Laurel began her publishing career in the editorial department of HarperCollins Children’s Books/Katherine Tegen Books in New York City. In the past decade, she has also held positions in the marketing department at a small publishing house, in a library, and as a bookseller at one of the nation’s best independent bookstores. What she loves about agenting is being the author’s number one cheerleader through all these parts of the publication process!


She’s seeking young adult and middle-grade fiction with earnest, engaging voices set in immersive worlds. Fantasy, contemporary, historical settings, retellings, and manuscripts with unique elements are of specific interest. In particular, she’s seeking voices that have previously been underrepresented and stories that have been overlooked. She’s also interested in middle-grade that might lend itself to illustration.


For chapter and picture books, she’s seeking authors and illustrators (or author-illustrators) who bring a unique vision to their stories. In chapter books, she’s seeking sweet realistic or mystery series. Her picture book tastes are diverse, ranging from sophisticated to quirky to gently humorous. She’s interested in art in all mediums, but especially appreciate a smart use of color and perspective.





Chris Kepner

Chris Kepner has been working in the publishing industry since 2008, both as a literary agent and more recently as a director of international rights. He has negotiated hundreds of book licenses all over the world, and he couldn’t be more excited about launching this agency. Discovering authors is his passion, and building a new list is an absolute thrill.

If you’re an author seeking representation, please review his query guidelines.



Lauren Galit

Being a literary agent is my dream job (but then again, I was a literary geek at Harvard): I get to work with writers all day long, helping them craft their book ideas and editing their proposals. And then, once the proposal is complete, I get to connect with editors to sell them on something I have passionately committed myself to for the past few months. And I get to chat — a lot (but hopefully not too much). With writers, with editors, with Caitlen. All good.

I started my agenting career in 2002 at John Boswell Associates, a literary agency and book packager that’s most noted for creating 365 Ways To Cook Chicken, as well as countless other best sellers. Because Boswell was a packager as well as an agent, he taught me how to do more than just craft a proposal and sell it; he showed me how to create a book from scratch, working with designers and production people along the way. It is that attention to detail that I bring to my current projects, even if we aren’t packaging them. I help my authors envision what their books could be.

Before becoming an agent, I was a magazine editor for 10 years, starting at GQ (Gentleman’s Quarterly) and ending at GH (Good Housekeeping). That’s where I learned to edit and copy edit, to read and reread until an article or caption or pull quote was just so. It is a skill I bring to every proposal I work on with a writer. It won’t go out until it is just so, because the proposal should beautifully and accurately represent the idea an author is dying to bring to the world.



Posted in Agent Showcase


Who’s ready for something new this fall?

This year, because of the many changes in the contest world, we have had to rethink Nightmare On Query Street and Sun versus Snow. As we didn’t want to let these amazing contests (who have many years of success) go, Michelle Hauck, Amy Trueblood, and myself have come with a brand new fall contest called, FALL FICTION FEST!

Like past contests, this will be a query plus first 250 words event.

We’ll open a contest window for twenty-four hours and accept entries that meet the contest requirements and guidelines. Once all entries have been received, Michelle, Amy, and I will review the entries and make ten selections each.

After these thirty selections are announced, the writers will be paired with seasoned mentors who’ll help them polish their materials for the agent round. Currently there are ten agents on board with hopefully more committing soon!

The agent round will be open for a full three days and will allow the participating agents to travel between our three blogs and make requests based on what they represent. To keep a bit of fun (and tradition) in the contest, we’ll continue having the agents request in a fall-flavored way. Like “add an extra marshmallow to my hot cocoa and send me the full!”

As always once the agent request period is over, we’ll direct the participants on how to send in their requested materials.

Now for the guidelines and rules…

  • Entries can be Adult, New Adult, Young Adult, or Middle Grade. All genres (excluding erotica)

  • Entries must be for a completed and polished manuscript (please check word count guidelines to make sure your entry qualifies!)

Some great online posts to check out:

Agent Jennifer Laughran’s Word Count Dracula

Writer’s Digest Guide to Word Count

  • The entry cannot have been part of an agent round in a contest for the last three months

Important dates:

October 31: Submission window opens (will be open for 24 hours)

November 19: Selected 30 entries announced

November 20-25: Mentors work with entries

November 26-28: Agent round

As we get closer to the submission window on October 31, we’ll post full details on submission guidelines and entry rules.

If you have a beautiful, stunning, exciting entry polished up and ready to query, we hope you’ll think about joining us for FALL FICTION FEST!

It is certain to be a “CHILLING and THRILLING” time!