Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Jeff Herman of the Jeff Herman Agency

Screen Shot 2018-04-11 at 10.32.22 AM.pngJeff Herman is a literary agent and the founder of the Jeff Herman Agency.

He is a nonfiction generalist, and looks for good concepts in almost any area of nonfiction. His areas of agent expertise include popular business, spirituality, self-help and much more. “If I feel I can sell it, I’ll represent it,” he says.

Jeff has made more than 1,000 book deals, including many bestsellers. His own books include JEFF HERMAN’S GUIDE TO PUBLISHERS, EDITORS & LITERARY AGENTS (more than 500,000 copies sold), and WRITE THE PERFECT BOOK PROPOSAL (coauthored with Deborah Herman). He has presented hundreds of workshops about writing and publishing, and has been interviewed for dozens of publications and programs.

 

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Get to Know a Literary Agent in Attendance: Beth Marshea of Ladderbird Agency

Screen Shot 2017-12-18 at 2.16.13 PM.pngBeth Marshea is a literary agent and the founder of Ladderbird Agency.

Ladderbird is a boutique literary agency. Beth has a long love of literature, which started as part of a family of bookworms. After obtaining an undergraduate degree in literature, Beth earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration. She became determined to find a way to merge her business passion and her love of literature, which she did as an agent. Beth is passionate about writing that pushes genres and boundaries and challenges the reader to accept a new point of view.

She is seeking:

literary fiction​: “We love literary fiction, particularly if it has an unusual setting or involves a deep look into problems with social constructs, gender roles, wealth disparity or racial tensions (particularly written by minority writers from any group). Literary is a genre where we really need to see beautiful, well thought out writing that lets us dive into ourselves and discover something new. We’re not especially limited in what we’ll look at, but it should be new; I don’t need another book about the difficulties of addiction.”

women’s fiction​: “We’d love to see a women’s adventure story that is smart, sharp, funny and page-turning!​​ Something like Stephanie Plum meets Indian Jones. In women’s fiction, we want strong characters, not people who are falling about over a breakup. We want women that inspirational and clever, not characters that need saving.”

fantasy​: “We are specifically looking for non-European centric fantasy. We would especially love to see fantasy that draws its inspiration from African, Indian, or Japanese culture. We like accessible fantasy that can reach a broad audience, I’m not interested in epics. Fantasies that are submitted to Ladderbird should be plot driven with strong well developed characters. We’d love to see something fun, magical and​ fast paced. I am especially draw to fantasy that is folkloric and draws inspiration from the old tales of the region of their focus.”

science fiction: “We would love to see quick, exciting, fun adventures. We prefer sci-fi that is closer to speculative fiction than deep sci-fi. They can involve space, but should not be space operas or epics. ​We love sci-fi that shows how technology impacts the world, especially in a positive way. We are especially interested in acquiring works have a utopic rather than dystopic environment, but we’ll look at both. We’re looking for the next Nnedi Okorafor!”

crime​ novels: “We’re looking for crime novels that have a strong setting, foreign or regional. We want fabulously developed characters that are interesting and relatable. We do not want police procedurals (no Law & Order!). We like the focus to come from the perspective of the criminal and offer insight into the illicit side of life while still being quick and fun, especially the ‘accidental’ criminal.”

young adult sci-fi & fantasy: “We are looking for YA sci-fi/fantasy that conforms to the same requirements as our adult sci-fi and fantasy but has a younger protagonists. YA should be able to reach both younger readers and adults. The themes should be universal and easily accessible for all readers.”

Ladderbird is NOT seeking:

mainstream/commercial fiction​
horror
thriller
historical fiction
young adult contemporary
middle grade
picture books​

 

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Rob Arnold of Aevitas Creative Management

Screen Shot 2017-10-31 at 4.53.39 PM.pngRob Arnold is a literary agent with Aevitas Creative Management.

He has over a decade of experience in literary publishing, working with such authors as Denis Johnson, Lauren Groff, Rick Moody, Lydia Davis, Jim Shepard, Ottessa Moshfegh, and others.

Before coming to Aevitas, he cofounded the online journal Memorious, and subsequently worked at Ploughshares, Fence Books, Beacon Press, and PEN New England, where he was associate director.

Rob is interested in literary fiction and nonfiction, graphic novels, memoir and biography, science, technology, art, and narrative nonfiction exploring issues of race, class, and gender.

 

 

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Lana Popovic of Chalberg & Sussman

Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 1.08.51 PMLana Popovic is a literary agent with Chalberg & Sussman.

Lana holds a B.A. with honors from Yale University, a J.D. from the Boston University School of Law, where she focused on intellectual property, and an M.A. with highest honors from the Emerson College Publishing and Writing program. Prior to joining Chalberg & Sussman, Lana worked at Zachary Shuster Harmsworth, where she built a list of Young Adult and adult literary authors while managing foreign rights for the agency.

Lana’s clients include Brittany Cavallaro (A Study in Charlotte, forthcoming from Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins), Angela Palm (Riverine, forthcoming from Graywolf), Leah Thomas (Because You’ll Never Meet Me, forthcoming from Bloomsbury), Rebecca Podos (The Mystery of Hollow Places, forthcoming from Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins), Michelle Smith (Play On, forthcoming from Spencer Hill Contemporary), and Marie Jaskulka (The Lost Marble Notebook of Forgotten Girl and Random Boy, forthcoming from Skyhorse).

With an abiding love for dark themes and shamelessly nerdy fare—Battlestar Galactica and Joss Whedon are two of her great loves—Lana is looking for a broad spectrum of Young Adult and Middle Grade projects, from contemporary realism to speculative fiction, fantasy, horror, and sci-fi. For the adult market, Lana is interested in literary thrillers, horror, fantasy, sophisticated erotica and romance, and select nonfiction. An avid traveler, she has a particular fondness for stories set in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and Asia, although she also loves reading about American subcultures.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Lucy Cleland of Kneerim & Williams

Screen Shot 2017-10-31 at 4.51.47 PM.pngLucy Cleland is a literary agent with Kneerim & Williams.

She enjoys reading and working on a variety of fiction and nonfiction, including unconventional cultural history, contemporary narrative nonfiction, literary-leaning vivid fiction, and YA with magnetic characters. She’s drawn to the lives of creatives and rebels, questions about identity and inheritance, Southern voices, and anything about food.

Lucy joined the agency in 2013 and serves as its Editorial & Dramatic Rights Manager, along with building her own list. She provides editorial support for the agents in the Boston office and administrative and creative support for Jill Kneerim, collaborating on clients’ proposals, editorial letters, and submission lists. Lucy graduated magna cum laude from Wellesley College, where she studied English and studio art. Previously she interned at Yale University Press and worked as a research assistant at the Emory Goizuetta Business School.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Beth Campbell of BookEnds Literary

Screen Shot 2017-11-09 at 9.00.01 PM.pngBeth Campbell is a literary agent with BookEnds Literary.

After interning for BookEnds as an undergrad, Beth joined the company as a literary assistant in September 2012. Since then she’s made her way up through the ranks and was promoted to Agent in April of 2017. She’s diligently building her client list and is always excited to meet an author with an excellent story. She’s also works as the company’s royalty manager–processing statements for all of BookEnds’ clients.

Beth’s obsession with books began with a distinct fantasy/sci-fi flavor, and she’s happily never kicked the addiction. She is primarily interested in signing clients within those genres, YA, romantic suspense, and mystery. She loves seeing diverse characters (sexuality, gender, race, you name it!) and strong friendships across all genres.

Outside of reading, her personal hobbies include drawing, cooking, gaming, and spending far too much time on the Internet.

Her authors include Cheryl Hollon, Jennie Davenport, Lynn Balabanos, Nathan Brown, Heidi Bleackley, Theo Nicole Lorenz, Marissa Doyle, Hannah Jack, and S.N. Bacon.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Amy Stern of Sheldon Fogelman Agency

screen-shot-2017-02-18-at-1-35-17-pmAmy Stern is a literary agent the Sheldon Fogelman Agency.

She began in 2010 as an agent assistant and has spent the past five years taking on additional responsibilities while not quite believing that she gets to work with children’s books as her job.

After receiving degrees in English and creative writing at Bryn Mawr College and masters degrees in children’s literature and library science at Simmons College, she interned at a literary agency and fell in love with the industry. In her copious spare time, she mentors writing students at Simmons’s Center for the Study of Children’s Literature.

She is currently accepting picture book, middle grade, and young adult submissions from authors and illustrators, particularly if the work explores underrepresented identities.

She is open to picture book text submissions. She’s not your best bet for a heterosexual romance or historical fiction, but is open to pretty much anything else in all categories of kidlit.

She has probably looked at your Tumblr.