We offer two meeting levels, each one suited for writers at different stages of their project. Each session runs for 15 minutes.
Quick Pitch ($100): This level is for writers who feel ready to pitch their project to prospective agents. It’s a chance to discuss your book’s overall premisech and receive feedback on your query letter and synopsis*. Also use this opportunity to ask questions about things you’ve struggled with as you prepare your project for publication. Agents will read your query letterand synopsis in advance and offer feedback during your session. You may be asked to send your full manuscript after the session if the agent feels it could be a good match for their list. Please do not be discouraged if you are not asked to submit the full manuscript. While the project may not be right for the particular agent with whom you are meeting, they will still be able to offer valuable advice based on their industry experience.
Full Pitch ($175): This meeting is also for writers who are prepared to pitch their book to agents. You have the opportunity to submit your query letter, synopsis, and up to 5 double-spaced pages of writing* in advance of the meeting. Agents will read your work in advance and come prepared to discuss it during your session. They will not bring written edits, but your session will be dedicated to offering specific feedback on your project. You may be asked to send your manuscript if the agent feels it could be a good match for their list. Again, although the agent may not feel the project is right for their particular list, they will still offer valuable advice based on their industry knowledge.
— Agent meetings are only open to conference attendees. If you are interested in a meeting but have not yet applied to the conference, please apply here. Meeting applications cannot be considered if you are not attending the conference.
— Your Quick Pitch or Full Pitch writing sample does not have to be ready at the time you apply. You can reserve your spot now and submit your work by August 27. You will find instructions for uploading your writing sample when you click through to schedule a meeting.
— If you are registered to attend the conference for one day, any meetings you would like to attend must take place on the same day that you are enrolled.
— See below for complete meeting terms of agreement.
For questions regarding meetings, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday Morning Meetings
Amy Elizabeth Bishop joined Dystel, Goderich & Bourret in 2015, after completing an internship with them in 2014. Before diving into the world of publishing, she graduated from SUNY Geneseo with a degree in Creative Writing. She is interested in upmarket women’s fiction, fiction from diverse authors, stories with a Victorian Gothic flair, and pretty much anything #ownvoices. She would also love to find some diverse adult fantasy that takes place in a non-Western based setting. In terms of nonfiction, she’s eagerly on the hunt for a killer feminist voice discussing contemporary issues and loves historical narrative nonfiction that dives into untold stories. Pop science & journalism also welcome! You can find her on Twitter @amylizbishop.
Sonali Chanchani is an associate agent at Folio Literary Management, where she represents character-driven upmarket and literary fiction with a strong, distinctive voice. In particular, she’s drawn to smart women’s fiction; quirky, heartfelt family stories; nuanced psychological mysteries; and rich, atmospheric historical projects with a touch of magical realism. On the nonfiction side, she’s interested in narratives and collections that illuminate some aspect of our society or culture — especially reported narratives in the areas of race, class, gender, and politics. Sonali earned her degree in English and Narrative Studies from the University of Southern California, and began her career in publishing at Kaya, an independent press dedicated to publishing authors from the Asian diaspora. She is a fierce advocate of authors from marginalized communities and, across the board, is keen to represent a diversity of voices.
Samantha joined Compass Talent after teaching high school English in New York City public schools, with prior roles and internships at Chalberg & Sussman literary agency, The Susan Golomb Literary Agency, and the New Press. She is also a reader for One Story magazine. Samantha is on the lookout for literary fiction; gripping thrillers or science-fi with a literary bent; young adult and middle grade fiction; and narrative nonfiction, including essays and memoir.
Erin Harris is a VP and literary agent at Folio Literary Management. She represents literary and upmarket fiction, narrative non-fiction, and select YA titles. Some of her authors include: Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award Finalist Carla Power; Bread Loaf Fellow and recipient of the Iowa Short Fiction Award Allegra Hyde; Indie Next Pick authors Erica Ferencik and Emiko Jean; Washington Post Bestseller Katrin Schumann; New York Times Editor’s Choice novelist Daniel Levine; MacDowell Colony fellow Kit Frick; and the estate of Dylan Thomas.
A graduate of the MFA program in Creative Writing at the New School, Erin knows what it’s like to sit on the writer’s side of the desk and enjoys working with both debut and seasoned authors throughout all stages of the publishing process. Erin is actively seeking diverse voices, bold stories, books with a feminist bent, and powerful prose. She enjoys high concept literary novels with an element of fabulism; contemporary and historical family sagas; upmarket suspense; memoir; essay collections; and reportage.
Heather Jackson decided to vault over the desk to the agent side in 2016 after a highly successful career as a trade editor. In her 20+ years as an editor she acted as the creative midwife to multiple dozens of New York Times bestselling authors and titles, including: Tim Ferriss, Jillian Michaels, Suzanne Somers, Ron Fournier, Joy Bauer, Janine Driver, Rick Hanson, Dr. Robert C. Atkins, Dr. Joseph Mercola, Dr. Arthur Agatston, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, Dr. Susan Love, Dr. Alice D. Domar, Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, Mallika Chopra, Barbara Sher, Martina Navratilova, Joe and Teresa Graedon, B. Smith and Dan Gasby, Howard Dully…among many others.
The selective client list she and her colleagues are cultivating has one unifying theme: to represent authors and books that make a difference and that make you want to press the pause button on everything else–ditch the screens, the duties, the worries–to sit down and read for hours. Books that inform, inspire, entertain, surprise, help; books that make you cry, laugh, question, feel, and stretch. Books that make a personal difference and a more global one; yet always those that can ignite or shift a conversation. And, most importantly, books that can connect deeply and widely with masses of readers.
The Heather Jackson Literary Agency specializes in commercial non-fiction and fiction. We represent top-tier authors in personal health and well-being, popular science and psychology, politics and current affairs, business, memoir, and self-help. We are always game for the unique, or deeply moving journalistic narrative that takes us into a world we didn’t know would intrigue us through its brilliant writing and insights. We love big ideas and groundbreaking big think books. Lastly, we love a great and memorable character in women’s fiction and are steadfastly looking for a reliable narrator who isn’t a hot mess.
Monica Odom founded Odom Media Management in 2019, after working in publishing for nearly a decade, including roles as agent at Liza Dawson Associates and Bradford Literary Agency. Monica represents a variety of nonfiction, literary and upmarket fiction, and illustrators. She earned her Masters in Publishing: Digital & Print Media from New York University in 2014, and has a B.A. in English from Montclair State University. She was also schooled in bookselling and event coordinating at her local indie, Watchung Booksellers. She loves to see a personal project turn into something original and surprising, and is committed to the expansion of diversity and inclusivity in the publishing industry.
Ayesha Pande has worked in the publishing industry for over twenty years. Before launching her boutique agency, Ayesha was a senior editor at Farrar Straus & Giroux. She has also held editorial positions at HarperCollins and Crown Publishers. She is a member of AAR (Association of Author’s Representatives), PEN, the Asian American Writer’s Workshop, and the Women’s Media Group. She holds a master’s degree from Columbia University. She represents National Book Award winner Ibram X. Kendi, international bestselling author Shilpi Somaya Gowda, PEN/Bingham Prize winner Danielle Evans and PEN/Bellwether Prize winner Lisa Ko. Her interests are wide-ranging and include literary as well as popular fiction, young adult, women’s, African-American and international fiction. She is also seeking authors of nonfiction, including biography, history, economics, popular culture, cultural commentary, memoir, and graphic novels. She is particularly drawn to distinctive, original and underrepresented voices.
Soumeya Bendimerad Roberts is both agent and rights director at the Hannigan Salky Getzler Agency. She worked formerly for Writers House, where she represented a diverse list of non-fiction, memoir, literary fiction, upmarket/book club fiction, and select realistic young-adult and middle-grade. Prior to joining Writers House, she was Director of Foreign Rights at the Susan Golomb Literary Agency, handling translation rights for best-selling, award-winning authors such as Jonathan Franzen, Rachel Kushner, William T. Vollmann, as well as representing her own clients. For several years she was a literary scout at Sanford Greenburg Associates, reporting on American books for the foreign market, and began her career in the editorial department at an independent literary publishing house, where she launched a lifelong commitment to shepherding quality fiction and nonfiction to publication.
In fiction, Soumeya is seeking literary and upmarket novels and collections, and also represents realistic young-adult and middle-grade. She likes books with vivid voices and compelling, well-developed story-telling, and is particularly interested in narratives by people of color and fiction that reflects on the post-colonial world. In non-fiction, she is primarily looking for idea-driven or voice-forward memoirs, personal essay collections, and approachable narrative non-fiction of all stripes.
Stéphanie Abou is an agent with Massie McQuilkin Literary Agents. Originally from Paris, where she completed a Master’s in Comparative Literature at the Sorbonne, she decided to make a career out of her passion for literature after an internship at Farrar, Straus and Giroux in the late 1990’s. Starting at The Joy Harris Literary Agency, then at Foundry Literary + Media, she developed a dual career as a foreign rights director and a domestic agent until landing at Massie McQuilkin in 2015, where she has been focusing solely on building her list of authors. She specializes in character-driven fiction, memoirs, YA and middle grade literature with a smattering of crime fiction. She is looking first and foremost for outstanding story tellers who can create an urgent and immersive quality to the reading experience. She is the agent for, among others, New York Times bestselling author Jenna Blum, National bestselling authors Randy Susan Meyers and Juliette Fay, and Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction and International Latino Book Award finalist Chantel Acevedo.
Patrice Caldwell is a graduate of Wellesley College and the founder & fundraising chair of People of Color in Publishing–a grassroots organization dedicated to supporting, empowering, and uplifting racially and ethnically marginalized members of the book publishing industry. Born and raised in Texas, Patrice was a children’s book editor before shifting to being a literary agent at Howard Morhaim Literary Agency, where she represents everything from chapter books to adult.
In 2018, she was named a Publishers Weekly Star Watch honoree and featured on The Writer’s Digest podcast and Bustle’s inaugural “Lit List” as one of ten women changing the book world.
Her anthology, A Phoenix First Must Burn: Sixteen Stories of Black Girl Magic, Resistance, and Hope, is out March 2020 from Viking Children’s Books/Penguin Teen. Visit Patrice online at patricecaldwell.com, Twitter @whimsicallyours, and Instagram @whimsicalaquarian.
Visit her Submission Guidelines for details on the kinds of projects Patrice represents.
Before joining DeFiore in early 2016, Reiko Davis was an associate agent at Miriam Altshuler Literary Agency for four years. She grew up in Kansas City, received her BA in Comparative Literature and Art History from Brown University, and is a graduate of the Columbia Publishing Course.
Reiko’s interests are varied, but she is particularly drawn to adult literary and upmarket fiction, narrative nonfiction, and young adult and middle grade fiction. She loves a strong narrative voice; smart, funny heroines; narrowly located settings (especially towns in the South and Midwest); family sagas; darkly suspenseful novels; and stories of remarkable friendships or that explore the often perilous terrain of human relationships. For children’s books, she is actively looking for young adult and middle grade fiction—whether it be contemporary, historical, fantasy, or simply a story with a timeless quality and vibrant characters. For nonfiction, she is most interested in cultural, social, and literary history; fascinating tours through niche subjects; narrative science; psychology; guides on creativity; and memoir.
Connor Goldsmith began his career in publishing in 2012 at Lowenstein Associates and joined Fuse in early 2014. Prior to transitioning into the world of books, he spent a year in the commercial film and television department at Abrams Artists Agency and received a Master’s Degree in Media Studies from The New School for Public Engagement. Connor is passionate about narrative across all media as a vehicle for social progress, and is open to projects in sci-fi, fantasy, horror, literary thriller, and LGBT+ literary fiction. In nonfiction, he seeks experts with established platforms in pop culture, social politics, and narrative history. Connor is especially interested in books by and about people from marginalized perspectives, such as LGBT+ people and racial minorities.
Annie Hwang is a literary agent at Folio Literary Management where she represents literary fiction and select nonfiction. She gravitates toward literary fiction that plays with genre and loves anything that grapples with the darker aspects of the human experience in some meaningful, unexpected way. She also seeks nuanced speculative fiction that contemplates the future and our place in the world. A fierce advocate of underrepresented voices, she looks for complex characters, layered plots, and braided narratives. Above all, Annie is constantly on the hunt for gifted storytelling that stretches its genre to new heights.
Anjali Singh is an agent at Ayesha Pande Literary. Before becoming an agent, she worked as an international literary scout; as an editor Vintage Books, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and Simon & Schuster; and as Editorial Director at Other Press. She is is best known for having championed Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis after stumbling across it on a visit to Paris. She has always been drawn to the thrill of discovering new writers, and among the literary novelists whose careers she helped launch are Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Samantha Hunt, Preeta Samarasan, Zoe Ferraris (winner of the LA Times Book Prize for Best First Novel for Finding Nouf), Victoria Patterson (Story Prize finalist for Drift), Brigid Pasulka (winner of the PEN-Hemingway Prize for A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True), and Saleem Haddad. As a literary agent, she is looking for new voices, character-driven fiction or non-fiction works that reflect an engagement with the world around us, and graphic novels for all ages. Some of her recent and forthcoming projects include Bridgett Davis’ critically-acclaimed memoir The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother’s Life in the Detroit Numbers, internationally bestselling Palestinian author Susan Abulhawa’s novel River (Atria, 2020); and the graphic novels Wake: The Hidden History of Enslaved Black Women’s Armed Resistance (37ink, 2020) by Rebecca Hall and Hugo Martinez, Deena Mohammed’s Shubeik Lubeik (Pantheon, 2021), Priya Huq’s Nisrin’s Hijab (Abrams 2020) and Sherine Hamdy and Myra El-Mir’s Jabs (Dial Books for Young Readers, 2020).
Sunday Morning Meetings
Stephanie Delman has been at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates since early 2012. After working closely with agency president Heide Lange for several years, handling foreign rights for Dan Brown, Brad Thor, and other bestselling authors while simultaneously building her own list, Stephanie transitioned to full-time agenting in January 2018. Stephanie represents a spectrum of authors who write for the adult market, with a focus on fiction: literary/upmarket, psychologically propulsive suspense, near-historical fiction, and genre-bending, literary narratives that contain elements of surrealism, magic, or sci-fi.
Stephanie also represents a limited selection of narrative non-fiction projects by authors with established platforms and unique perspectives. In non-fiction, she is looking for longform reportage that reads like fiction, true crime, and expert accounts of dark and far-flung corners of the world. In both fiction and non-fiction, Stephanie favors #ownvoices, diverse perspectives, and feminist narratives. A graduate of Johns Hopkins’ Writing Seminars program, Stephanie considers herself a “hands-on” agent and is eager to work with debut authors who are serious about their craft.
Mitch Hoffman joined the Aaron Priest Literary Agency as a Senior Agent in December 2015, and is actively building a list of authors writing across the spectrum of fiction and nonfiction. He was previously Vice-President, Executive Editor at Grand Central Publishing.
As an editor, Mitch published over 200 books, more than 60 of which were New York Times bestsellers. He has nurtured the careers of debut novelists as well as global #1 bestselling authors, and has worked with journalists, memoirists, scientists and historians. Their books have won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the Orange Prize for Fiction, the Edgar Award, ITW’s Thriller Award, The Barnes & Noble Discover Award, and have been longlisted for the Man Booker Prize, among many other honors.
Prior to joining Grand Central Publishing in 2007, Mitch held editorial positions at Dutton and Dell Publishing, and began his career as an intern at Farrar, Straus and Giroux. He has been a Fellow of the Jerusalem International Book Fair, a Distinguished Guest of the Toronto International Festival of Authors, and has been a featured panelist at a wide array of industry events, numerous writers’ conferences, and has also addressed the bipartisan Creative Rights Caucus on Capitol Hill (sponsored by the AAP and Authors Guild) regarding collaboration between writers and publishers, and the importance of copyright protection for authors.
Jacqueline Ko is a literary agent at The Wylie Agency, where she has worked since 2007, representing literary fiction as well as history, journalism, cultural criticism, science, humor, poetry, narrative nonfiction, and graphic/illustrated work. She holds a BA in English from Yale. The Wylie Agency has operated for over thirty-five years out of offices in New York and London: wylieagency.com.
Christina Morgan has over ten years of experience in the publishing business. She got her start at one of the world’s oldest literary agencies, Curtis Brown Ltd, before moving on to Amistad/HarperCollins where she was a part of a team that published successful titles such as The Pursuit of Happyness, Confessions of a Video Vixen, Act Like a Lady, Think Like Man and the fiction of Edward P. Jones. She then moved on to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt where she was privileged to work on a list that included some of the world’s top authors including Umberto Eco, Amos Oz, Alice Walker and Charles Simic. She is interested in primarily in literary fiction and non-fiction, memoir, mysteries, and pop culture.
DongWon Song is an agent at the Howard Morhaim Literary Agency representing science fiction and fantasy for adults, young adults, and middle grade audiences. He also handles select non-fiction. Previously, he was an editor with Orbit. He has also worked as a digital bookseller for ebook startup Zola Books.
Sunday Afternoon Meetings
Noah Ballard is an agent at Curtis Brown. He received his BA in English from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, and began his career in publishing at Emma Sweeney Agency where he sold foreign rights for the agency in addition to building his own client list. Noah specializes in literary debuts, upmarket thrillers and narrative nonfiction, and he is always on the look-out for honest and provocative new writers. Noah has appeared across the country at graduate programs and writing conferences speaking about query letters, building nonfiction platforms and submission etiquette.
Sarah Bowlin joined Aevitas Creative Management as an agent in 2017. Before becoming an agent, she spent a decade as an editor of literary fiction and nonfiction, first at Riverhead Books and most recently at Henry Holt & Company. She has edited many acclaimed writers including Juan Gabriel Vásquez, Sheila Heti, Salvatore Scibona, Helen Phillips, Ramona Ausubel, Rachel Khong, and Julie Buntin. As an agent, she represents Vanessa Veselka, Aysegul Savas, Souvankham Thammavongsa, Halimah Marcus, Lynn Steger Strong, Shane Jones, Elisa Albert and Kevin Nguyen, among others. She is interested in bold voices—specifically stories of strong or difficult women and unexpected narratives of place, identity, and the shifting ways we see ourselves and each other. Originally from the South, she now lives in Los Angeles.
Jamie Carr has worked in WME’s Literary Department since 2014. She represents novelists, short story writers, journalists, activists, chefs, and culture writers. Jamie is most drawn to writing that is voice-driven and highly transporting—and that seeks to disrupt or reframe what appears to be known. She has an MFA in fiction writing and first cut her publishing teeth in the books department of Tin House.
A few of her clients include: Sophia Shalmiyev, Cassie Chambers Armstrong, Melissa Larsen, Tracy Clark-Flory, Sasha Velour, Kimberly Drew, Rainesford Stauffer, Kristen Martin, & Jenessa Abrams.
Over her twenty-five year career as an acquiring editor at Simon & Schuster and the Editor in Chief of Plume, a Penguin Random House imprint, Cherise Fisher has edited and published several national bestsellers and award winning authors, including George Lopez, Nelson George, Rachel Hall, Tony Parsons, and Sadeqa Johnson.
As an agent, Cherise is interested in working with novelists who have several compulsively readable yarns in their head and are committed to perfecting their craft as storytellers. She will advocate for memoirs that uncover the diversity of human experience, and take on non-fiction writers who are experts on a variety of topics such as personal development, health and sexuality, racial identity, Christianity and spirituality, diet and fitness, African American history, and pop culture. Her intention is that all the books she helps bring into the world are relevant, enduring, and help readers maximize joy and productivity in their lives.
Alexandra Franklin joined the Vicky Bijur Literary Agency after internships and assistant experience at Writers House, HSG Agency, Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents, and Scholastic’s Alliance for Young Artists and Writers. She holds an MFA in poetry from the New School. Campus novels, literary thrillers, and offbeat memoir are of particular interest to her, as are works by and for voices traditionally underrepresented in mainstream media. She is primarily looking for realistic literary fiction, upmarket commercial fiction, young adult fiction, narrative nonfiction, memoir, and essay collections. She is not the right agent for genre fiction, children’s books, or prescriptive nonfiction.
Carrie Howland formed Howland Literary in 2018 after thirteen years as an agent, most recently at Empire Literary. The agency’s mission is to represent strong, diverse voices across genres. She represents adult literary and upmarket fiction, narrative non-fiction, young adult, middle grade, and select picture book authors. Carrie is also incredibly interested in music and pop-culture. Carrie holds a B.A. in English and Creative Writing from Albion College. Her poetry has appeared in various literary journals and magazines. In her spare time, Carrie volunteers with the Junior League, Delta Gamma Alumnae Association, Soldiers’ Angels, and, most dear to her heart, as a foster for a local dog rescue. You might say books and dogs are the loves of her life! So, if you have a dog, she wants to pet it; if your book has a dog, she wants to read it! Because of her passion for volunteerism, a portion of all Howland Literary’s proceeds are donated to local charities.
Paul Lucas joined Janklow & Nesbit in 2007 and represents: science fiction, fantasy, thrillers, and high concept fiction across many stripes, as well as, narrative non-fiction, biography, business, political and popular science. Despite majoring in Canadian poetry at McGill, he does not represent that category (or, for that matter, picture books, cookbook, stage/screen/teleplays, memoir or inspirational). Clients include Katherine Arden, R.A. Salvatore, Anthony Ryan, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Bruce Gibney, Robert Baer, and Porter Fox.
TERMS OF AGREEMENT FOR SLWC AGENT MEETINGS
Please note that by signing up to attend a one-on-one agent meeting at SLWC, you agree:
* One-on-one agent meetings at SLWC are for the sole purpose of receiving an agent’s professional opinion on your pitch during the 15 minutes allocated for the meeting.
* Agents are under no obligation to consider your manuscript for representation after they meet with you at SLWC or to provide feedback to you in the future should they ask to see more of your work.
* Due to the number of submissions agents receive, many agents are not able to provide responses to all queries. If you do not hear back from an agent after meeting with him or her at SLWC, please assume that the agent has decided your work is not a good fit for his/her list.
* Meeting with an agent at SLWC does not exempt you from following the agent’s submission guidelines during any correspondence outside of your SLWC meeting.