Rob 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.
Lana 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.
Lucy 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.
Beth 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.
Kimiko Nakamura is a literary agent with Dee Mura Literary.
Kimiko’s career started in the publishing houses of Boston where she fostered her talent for sales. At Dee Mura Literary, she found another passion: helping writers build successful careers. Kimiko works with new and emerging writers. She looks for page-turning fiction and non-fiction that leaves people inspired and offers readers a full range of emotions—laughter that slips out while reading in public, tears that splash onto our e-readers, and an aha of connection on the page, reminding us that books are more than something we simply hold in our hands.
SPECIAL INTERESTS: Contemporary/mainstream fiction, literary fiction, young adult, and women’s fiction, as well as memoir, mind and body, health, and cookbooks.
FAVORITE BOOKS: Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann, Great House by Nicole Krauss, The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares, A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby, The Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters, and One for the Money by Janet Evanovich.
If you are coming to the 2018 Boston Writing Workshop, you may be thinking about pitching our agent-in-attendance or editor-in-attendance. An in-person pitch is an excellent way to get an agent excited about both you and your work. Here are some tips (from one of last event’s instructor, Chuck Sambuchino) that will help you pitch your work effectively at the event during a 10-minute consultation. Chuck advises that you should:
- Try to keep your pitch to 90 seconds. Keeping your pitch concise and short is beneficial because 1) it shows you are in command of the story and what your book is about; and 2) it allows plenty of time for back-and-forth discussion between you and the agent. Note: If you’re writing nonfiction, and therefore have to speak plenty about yourself and your platform, then your pitch can certainly run longer.
- Practice before you get to the event. Say your pitch out loud, and even try it out on fellow writers. Feedback from peers will help you figure out if your pitch is confusing, or missing critical elements. Remember to focus on what makes your story unique. Mystery novels, for example, all follow a similar formula — so the elements that make yours unique and interesting will need to shine during the pitch to make your book stand out.
- Do not give away the ending. If you pick up a DVD for Die Hard, does it say “John McClane wins at the end”? No. Because if it did, you wouldn’t buy the movie. Pitches are designed to leave the ending unanswered, much like the back of any DVD box you read.
- Have some questions ready. 10 minutes is plenty of time to pitch and discuss your book, so there is a good chance you will be done pitching early. At that point, you are free to ask the agent questions about writing, publishing or craft. The meeting is both a pitch session and a consultation, so feel free to ask whatever you like as long as it pertains to writing.
- Remember to hit the big beats of a pitch. Everyone’s pitch will be different, but the main elements to hit are 1) introducing the main character(s) and telling us about them, 2) saying what goes wrong that sets the story into motion, 3) explaining how the main character sets off to make things right and solve the problem, 4) explaining the stakes — i.e., what happens if the main character fails, and 5) ending with an unclear wrap-up.
Rebecca Podos is a literary agent with Rees Literary Agency.
She is a graduate of the MFA Writing, Literature and Publishing program at Emerson College, whose debut YA novel THE MYSTERY OF HOLLOW PLACES is forthcoming from Balzer + Bray.
Rebecca is interested in: young adult and middle grade fiction, particularly books about complex female relationships, beautifully written contemporary, genre novels with a strong focus on character, romance with more at stake than “will they / won’t they,” and LGBTQ books across all genres.
She is thrilled to represent books like Rin Chupeco’s THE GIRL FROM THE WELL (Sourcebooks), Ryan Bradford’s HORROR BUSINESS (Month9Books), Sarah Nicolas’ DRAGONS ARE PEOPLE, TOO (Entangled), Mackenzi Lee’s THIS MONSTROUS THING (Katherine Tegen Books, Fall 2015), Emily Ross’s HALF IN LOVE WITH DEATH (Merit Press, Fall 2015), Ashley Herring Blake’s SUFFER LOVE (HMH Children’s, 2016) Kenneth Logan’s THE SLOW THAW (HarperCollins Children’s, 2016), and Lila Michael’s NOW YOU SEE HER (Katherine Tegen Books, 2017.)