(APRIL 2020 UPDATE: The 2020 Writing Conference of Los Angeles is postponed until 2021 for safety reasons. If you are signed up for the 2020 event as a paid attendee, or you would like to know more about WDW’s new 2020 online conferences — which include many recorded sessions, one-on-one pitching to agents by phone or Skype, and more — please see all info here, and be in contact with us anytime you want — firstname.lastname@example.org.)
PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These one-on-one meetings at the 2020 Writing Conference of Los Angeles (May 2, 2020) are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind. More 2020 agents to be announced as they are confirmed. You can sign up for pitches at any time, or switch pitches at any time, so long as the agent in question still has appointments open.
PITCH AN AGENT OR EDITOR:
Dana Newman is a literary agent and the founder of Dana Newman Literary. She is seeking: “On the fiction side, we consider a very selective amount of literary fiction and women’s upmarket fiction. We look for character-driven stories written in a distinctive voice that are emotionally truthful. We are interested in practical nonfiction (business, health and wellness, psychology, parenting, technology) by authors with smart, unique perspectives and established platforms who are committed to actively marketing and promoting their books. We love compelling, inspiring narrative nonfiction in the areas of memoir, biography, history, pop culture, current affairs/women’s interest, social trends, and sports/fitness. A favorite genre is literary nonfiction: true stories, well told, that read like a novel you can’t put down.” Learn more about Dana here.
Kianna Shore is a literary agent with Ladderbird Literary. Kianna wants prose that reads like poetry. “Create characters that are super flawed and awful or a precious cinnamon roll that must be protected — but make me care. Make me fall in love with them and then break my heart. Introduce me to unforgettable worlds. Super intersectional? I’m your girl. Fantasy inspired by non-western cultures? Yes! Fantasy starring a character with a disability? For sure. YA historical with a queer BIPOC lead? Send it my way. I want to champion underrepresented writers who write their #ownvoices. Right now I am actively looking for young adult, but will consider well written middle grade and new adult that follow my same guidelines [on my agent page here]” — Learn more about Kianna here.
Melanie Castillo is a literary agent with Root Literary. “I’m actively looking for fiction and narrative nonfiction. I’m especially excited to find high-concept commercial and literary leaning general fiction, young adult novels with a strong voice and propulsive pacing, and heartfelt and humorous middle grade novels across genres. She is seeking upmarket fiction with elements of mystery/suspense, any commercial fiction that could sit on a shelf next to Blake Crouch or Michael Crichton, and beautifully-written, well-researched, and expansive adult fiction that straddles the line between commercial and literary. In young adult, she seeks YA SF/F or high fantasy that can be summed up as “feelings while running.” (There’s page-turning action and adventure, but there’s also an emotional undercurrent that carries through to those last pages.) She also seeks a YA slow burn romance (contemporary, rom-com, and fantasy). In middle grade, she seeks heartwarming and adventurous contemporary stories, a darker fantasy (standalone or series), and anything that reads like a Studio Ghibli film. Learn more about Melanie here.
Samantha Bagood is a literary agent and founder of Samantha B. Literary. She specializes in books for all kinds of books for children — picture books, chapter books, middle grade, and young adult. (No adult fiction pitches of any kind please.) She enjoys out-of-the-box formats and styles done well, and would love to see more stories from an Asian-American perspective. Learn more about Samantha here.
Rachael Dillon Fried is a literary agent with Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. Rachael is selectively growing her client list with a keen interest in women’s literary and commercial fiction. She hopes to build long-term relationships with clients who are passionate about developing their career. Learn more about Rachael here.
Susan Finesman is a literary agent and founder of Fine Literary. She seeks: Literary and mainstream fiction, mystery, romance, young adult novels, and historical fiction. In nonfiction, her favorites are lifestyle and cookbooks, but she also will consider memoir/biography, business/investing/finance, history, mind/body/spirit, health, and travel. Learn more about Susan here.
Paul S. Levine is a literary agent and the founder of Paul S. Levine Literary. He is also an attorney. His fiction interests include adventure novels, mainstream fiction, mysteries, romance, thrillers, and women’s fiction. His nonfiction interests include business/commerce, pop culture, how-to, self-help, politics/law, relationships, and sports. Learn more about Paul here.
Sherry Robb is a literary agent and founder of The Robb Company. In her own words: “Book development and selling books to publishers has been my main focus my whole professional life. Over the years I have launched the publishing careers of over 300 writers. My main interests are: psychological thrillers/suspense, mysteries, science fiction, fantasy, and how-to nonfiction books (any subject if the writer is an expert in the field of her/his choice). Another, more subtle desire is to find novels that have a unique and/or quirky voice even if the story line is unusual — or a story we have heard but told in a different way.” Learn more about Sherry here.
Nephele Tempest is a literary agent with The Knight Agency. She is currently seeking works in the following genres: literary/commercial fiction, women’s fiction, fantasy, science fiction, romantic suspense, paranormal romance, contemporary romance, historical fiction, young adult and middle grade fiction. Learn more about Nephele here.
Anne Tibbets is a literary agent with D4EO Literary Agency and also a speculative fiction novelist herself. She is seeking: adult and young adult thrillers, mystery novels, science fiction novels, fantasy novels, historical, horror novels, and romance novels. Learn more about Anne here.
Rachel Beck is a literary agent with Liza Dawson Associates. Rachel is looking for: upmarket/book club women’s fiction in the vein of Emily Giffin, Jodi Picoult, Jennifer Weiner and Liane Moriarty; light-hearted millennial fiction or contemporary romance like Kristan Higgins or Sophie Kinsella; character-driven, psychological/domestic suspense that contain fresh plots and mind-blowing premises; contemporary young adult, primarily issue-driven material that explores topics such as sexual assault, LGBTQ issues, etc.; and select nonfiction, such as feminist material; career/business/personal growth books; extreme underdog, survival, accomplishment, or rising-from-poverty type stories; select health and wellness books (especially mental health, eating disorders, any rare or underrepresented conditions, Alzheimer’s/memory books); books about football/the NFL; marathoner/triathlete memoirs; parenting books with new angles; books that explore cult life or extreme religion; 9/11 survival stories. Learn more about Rachel here.
Tara Gilbert is a jr. literary agent with Corvisiero Agency. At the 2020 LA conference, she is taking pitches on behalf of herself as well as co-agents. Personally, she is seeking all kinds of young adult and middle grade, adult sci-fi, adult fantasy, graphic novels, contemporary fiction, and romance. On behalf of co-agents, she will take pitches for historical novels, women’s fiction, mainstream/general fiction, and children’s picture books. Learn more about Tara here.
Steven Hutson is a literary agent and the founder of Wordwise Media Services. He is seeking: Steven is open to any genre except picture books, short stories, and poetry. That means he is seeking historical fiction, literary fiction, mainstream/upmarket fiction, thriller, suspense, crime, mystery, romance, young adult fiction, middle grade fiction, science fiction, women’s fiction, and fantasy. He also will take pitches for memoir. Get to know Steven here.
Jemiscoe Chambers-Black is a jr. literary agent at Corvisiero Literary. She is seeking: mainstream fiction, women’s fiction, romance in all genres (especially in contemporary and fantasy), thriller, crime, fantasy, middle grade, young adult, and literary fiction. Learn more about Jemiscoe here.
Rae Loverde is an agent assistant at Donald Maass Literary Agency. At the 2020 LA event, she will be acting as a literary scout — taking pitches at the workshop on behalf of her co-agents. Her co-agent Kiana Nguyen is seeking the following: contemporary romances like Alisha Rai and Alyssa Cole, adult sci-fi that feels like “Black Mirror,” and psychological thrillers. In YA, she’s looking for thrillers and contemporary that’s queer, POC, or features a mystery. Co-agent Caitlin McDonald is seeking the following: all science fiction & fantasy fiction for adult, YA, and MG, especially secondary world fantasy and alternate history; genre-bending or cross-genre fiction, and stories that examine tropes from a new angle; diversity of all kinds, including (but not limited to) race, gender, sexuality, and ability, in both characters and worldbuilding. Learn more about Rae here.
More 2020 agents to be announced as they are confirmed. You can sign up for pitches at any time, or switch pitches at any time, so long as the agent in question still has appointments open.
These one-on-one meetings are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind.
(Please note that Agent/Editor Pitching is an add-on, separate aspect of the day, for only those who sign up. Spaces are limited for these premium meetings.)