Ask (Almost) Anything ($50): This session is for writers who are early or mid-way through their project and struggling with next steps. It’s a chance to have a candid conversation with an agent about the issues that are slowing you down. Ask questions about your writing process, smart steps for revisions, whether they think your project has commercial potential, and anything else related to finishing and publishing your book. Note that this is not the time to ask whether the agent is interested in representing your work. Rather, think of it as a coffee date with a friend who happens to know a lot about book publishing (there will actually be coffee). Vent your writing frustrations, ask questions, and glean advice as you work toward reaching the next stage of your project. Agents will not read a writing sample but you have the option to submit a one-page letter with your application that explains your project and the issues you would like to discuss.
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 premise 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 letter and synopsis* in advance and offer feedback during your session. If you have not yet written a query letter, a brief summary of the project will suffice. 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 ($200): 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 15 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.
*Your Quick Pitch or Full Pitch writing sample does not have to be ready at the time you apply. You can reserve your spot in advance and submit your work by August 15. Instructions for sending your writing will be sent by email after your enrollment is approved.
To register, choose your desired meeting level under an agent’s bio and follow the application instructions. For questions regarding meetings, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
***Please note that 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.
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.
Saturday, September 9
Monica Odom, Agent, Bradford Literary Agency (10:00am to 12:00pm)
Monica Odom joined Bradford Literary Agency in 2015. Prior to joining Team Bradford, she worked for five years managing finance, subrights and social media at Liza Dawson Associates, and became an associate agent there in 2013. Monica 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. Monica is seeking: Nonfiction by authors with demonstrable platforms in the areas of: pop culture, illustrated/graphic design, food and cooking, humor, history and social issues. She is also looking for narrative nonfiction in these areas, and some memoir. She loves to see a personal project turn into something original and surprising.
Fiction in the areas of: literary fiction, upmarket commercial fiction, compelling speculative fiction and magic realism, historical fiction, alternative histories, dark and edgy fiction, and literary psychological thrillers. She looks for original storytelling, incredible voice, compelling characters, and vivid, detailed setting. She also likes to see a strong sense of narrative tension.
Monica is serious about the fact that We Need Diverse Books and is looking for authentic representation of all characters, diverse or otherwise. She enjoys working closely with her clients on the editorial and developmental level to fine-tune manuscripts and proposals, and loves the process of managing a writer or artist’s career.
Saba Sulaiman, Agent, Talcott Notch Literary Services (11:20am to 12:35pm)
Saba Sulaiman is an agent at Talcott Notch Literary Services. She holds a BA from Wellesley College and an MA from the University of Chicago, where she studied modern Persian literature. She’s looking primarily for Middle Grade and Young Adult fiction, and is particularly interested in contemporary realistic stories. Being a first generation immigrant in the process of negotiating her own identity and sense of belonging in a place she now calls “home,” she is committed to highlighting more diverse voices with compelling stories to tell; stories that demonstrate the true range of perspectives that exist in this world, and address urgent and often underexplored issues in children’s fiction with veracity and heart.
Michelle Brower, Agent, Aevitas Creative Management (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
Michelle Brower began her career in publishing in 2004 while studying for her Master’s degree in English Literature at New York University. After graduating, she became an agent at Wendy Sherman Associates where she began representing books in a variety of areas within fiction and non-fiction. Recent books she has represented include: The House Girl (William Morrow 2013) by Tara Conklin, a New York Times bestseller, #1 Indie Next Pick, and Target Book Club Pick; The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler (St Martins 2015), which was a Barnes & Noble Discover Pick and Amazon Debut of the Month; The Girl Who Came Home (William Morrow 2014) by internationally bestselling author Hazel Gaynor; as well as the New York Times bestseller The Returned by Jason Mott (MIRA 2014), which was the basis of the ABC television series “Resurrection.”
She is interested in fiction that pays equal attention to both the voice and the story, particularly literary fiction, thrillers and literary mysteries, smart women’s fiction, “book club” fiction that brings a tear to the eye and a thrill to the heart, and books with a fantastic/paranormal element that reach beyond genre. She is also selectively representing YA with the same qualities. In non-fiction, she is mostly interested in subject-driven narratives, memoirs, or journalism.
Jenni Ferrari-Adler, Agent, Union Literary (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
Jenni Ferrari-Adler is a longtime agent at Union Literary (formerly Brick House) where she represents a range of novels and story collections, cookbooks, memoirs, narrative nonfiction, and other categories. She is particularly drawn to voice and humor, authority, and insight into the human condition. Of late, she relishes novels that show characters over a long time (e.g. Ann Patchett’s Commonwealth, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Americanah, Meg Wolitzer’s The Interestings, and Hanya Yanigahara’s A Little Life) as well as books that delve deeply into a particular moment (e.g. Marcy Dermansky’s The Red Car). Jenni enjoys working with her clients editorially, on each step of the publishing process, and on their career as a whole. She holds an MFA in Fiction from the University of Michigan and a BA from Oberlin College. She edited the anthology Alone in the Kitchen with an Eggplant: Confessions of Cooking for One and Dining Alone and has been published in Glimmer Train and Tin House. She has taught Fiction at the University of Michigan and the Gotham Writers’ Workshop, and worked as a reader for The Paris Review and as a bookseller at Housing Works (where she met her husband). Jenni is on the contracts committee of the AAR and is a member of The IACP. She lives in Brooklyn.
Christina Morgan, Agent, Serendipity Literary Agency (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
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.
Sunday, September 10
Anjali Singh, Agent, Ayesha Pande Literary Agency (10:00am to 12:00pm)
Currently an agent at Ayesha Pande Literary, Anjali Singh started her career in publishing in 1996 as a literary scout. She has worked as Editorial Director at Other Press and as an editor at Simon & Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Vintage Books. Among the authors she has published are Marjane Satrapi, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Samantha Hunt, Preeta Samarasan, Diana Abu-Jaber, and Victoria Patterson. 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, literary thrillers, memoirs, YA and MG literature and graphic novels. Among her forthcoming projects as an agent are Bridgett M. Davis’ What Does Happiness Play For?, a memoir about her mother, Detroit, and the Numbers (Little, Brown); Sherine Hamdy and Myra El-Mir’s YA graphic novel about coming-of-age Muslim-American (Dial Books for Young Readers); and Arif Anwar’s The Storm (S&S).
Mark Gottlieb, Agent, Trident Media Group (10:00am to 12:00pm)
Mark Gottlieb attended Emerson College and was President of its Publishing Club, establishing the Wilde Press. After graduating with a degree in writing, literature & publishing, he began his career with Penguin’s VP. Mark’s first position at Publishers Marketplace’s #1-ranked literary agency, Trident Media Group, was in foreign rights. Mark was EA to Trident’s Chairman and ran the Audio Department. Mark is currently working with his own client list, helping to manage and grow author careers with the unique resources available to Trident. He has ranked #1 among Literary Agents on publishersmarketplace.com in Overall Deals and other categories.
Erin Harris, Agent, Folio Literary Management (10:00am to 12:00pm)
Erin Harris is a literary agent at Folio Literary Management who represents literary and upmarket commercial fiction, narrative non-fiction, and YA. She represents Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award Finalist Carla Power, New York Times Editor’s Choice novelist Daniel Levine, Indie Next Pick author Erica Ferencik, Rona Jaffe Award Winner Natalie Haney-Tilghman, and recipient of the Iowa Short Fiction Award Allegra Hyde, among others. Erin champions the careers of both debut and established authors, bringing a strong editorial eye and hands-on approach to her agenting practice. She received an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School.
Andrea Morrison, Agent, Writers House (10:00am to 12:00pm)
Andrea Morrison started at Writers House as an intern in 2009. Under Geri Thoma (Joan Silber, Harold Holzer, Ann Packer, Wendy Lower, Christina Baker Kline) and Rebecca Sherman (Daniel Salmieri, Jarrett J. Krosoczka, Andrea Davis Pinkney, Melissa Sweet), she’s had the opportunity to work with a wide variety of bestselling and award-winning authors and illustrators in genres ranging from picture books to middle grade and YA to adult literary fiction and nonfiction. Having studied Literature/Writing at University of California, San Diego and having earned her MFA in Fiction from Columbia University, Andrea is hands-on editorially. She’s particularly excited about adult fiction that blends gorgeous sentence-level writing with stories featuring younger protagonists (e.g. Megan Abbott, Janet Fitch, and Celeste Ng). She’s hungry for YA that appeals to all ages (some of her favorite YA novels were written by Lauren Oliver, E. Lockhart, Jandy Nelson, Kate Scelsa and Cristina Moracho) and that blends crazy-beautiful language with characters navigating the nutty, magical, and hard parts of being a teen. She loves books that defy genre lines and is a total sucker for vivid descriptions of California. Most importantly, she’s looking for characters that need to be heard—for stories that grab your heart and don’t let it go, even after they’re finished.
Ayesha Pande, Agent, Ayesha Pande Literary Agency (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
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.
Jeff Kleinman, Agent, Folio Literary Management (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
Jeff Kleinman is a founding partner of Folio Literary Management. He represents upmarket and literary fiction and narrative nonfiction. Some of his authors include the New York Times Bestsellers The Art of Racing in the Rain, The $80 Champion, Mockingbird, and The Snow Child (Pulitzer Finalist). Among his most anticipated projects in 2017 are Karen Dionne’s The Marsh King’s Daughter, Kathy McKeon’s Jackie’s Girl, and debut novelists Benjamin Ludwig’s Ginny Moon and Val Emmich’s The Reminders.
Annie Hwang, Agent, Folio Literary Management (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
Annie Hwang is a literary agent at Folio Literary Management where she represents a range of adult fiction and select nonfiction. She is actively building her list and gravitates toward literary fiction featuring diverse characters and authentic voices; rich historical fiction where the setting takes on a life of its own; literary thrillers with dark psychological grit; and nuanced speculative/science-fiction that questions what it means to be human in the age of technology. Underrepresented voices occupy a special place in her heart and she is particularly drawn to braided narratives, complex characters, and layered plots. A California transplant and former journalist, Annie is constantly on the hunt for gifted storytelling that stretches its genre to new heights.
Kate McKean, Agent, Howard Morhaim Literary Agency (2:40pm to 4:35pm)
Kate McKean is vice president and literary agent at the Howard Morhaim Literary Agency in Brooklyn, New York, where she has worked for more than eleven years. She earned her master’s in fiction writing at the University of Southern Mississippi and enjoys both the creative and business aspects of her job. She also teaches classes in publishing at New York University. Her clients include New York Times bestselling YA horror author Madeleine Roux, YA and adult fantasy author Delilah S. Dawson, and author of the New York Times bestselling Texts from Jane Eyre, Mallory Ortberg.