Welcome to the final day of the #DVpit agent spotlight! Settle in and get to know the final six agents being featured this week!
Taylor Martindale Kean is a literary agent with Full Circle Literary, actively acquiring all genres of young adult and middle grade fiction and non-fiction. She is particularly interested in finding unique and unforgettable voices, with character-driven stories that stay with you. Her clients include Emery Lord, Anna-Marie McLemore, Aisha Saeed, Annie Cardi, Lois Miner Huey and more.
“I am looking for fresh, diverse stories and voices in both fiction and non-fiction. I love seeing stories that broaden horizons for all readers, exploring culture, language, heritage and identity in all genres. We live in a wonderfully diverse world, with so many incredible facets, and I want to read more stories that reflect that world with authenticity and heart.”
Susan Hawk is an agent at the Bent Agency, where she reps children’s books, picture book through YA.
“I’m looking for any kind of diverse stories, particularly for MG: fantasy that’s based on non-Western folklore or legend; gripping historical fiction set outside Europe or the US; protagonists of color, are LGBTQ, and/or have a physical or mental disability. What I love most are stories with vivid characters, that will open minds and stay with kids forever.”
”I’m looking for middle grade and young adult fiction and nonfiction—any and all gender/sex/race/religion/minority welcome, as long as it is integral to how the story must be told and not inserted to be “buzzy”. Quite simply I am looking for unique voices that pull me into the narrative and characters that jump off the page. For books that become “must reads” not just for kids, but for thoughtful readers of any age.“
Maggie Riggs is the principal agent of The Riggs Agency, a boutique literary agency specializing in literary fiction, as well as select non-fiction including narrative non-fiction, essays, memoir, and food writing. Prior to founding the agency, Maggie worked as an editor at Viking, an associate agent at The Friedrich Agency, and as an independent editor at NY Book Editors.
“I am particularly interested in works from fiction writers of color in the U.S., writers from underrepresented countries (and their experiences both at home and in the U.S.), and authors writing about underrepresented class groups. As one example, one of my current clients is an Albanian-American woman writing about life in Albania under Communist rule. Some authors whose work I’ve admired over the last few years include Jesmyn Ward, Tiphanie Yanique, James Hannaham, Kirsten Valdez Quade, Justin Torres, and NoViolet Bulawayo. I would be thrilled to have the opportunity to take on work from authors writing in similar veins.”
Patricia Nelson has been a literary agent with Marsal Lyon Literary Agency since 2014. She represents young adult and middle grade fiction, women’s fiction, contemporary and historical romance, and select adult literary fiction.
“My tastes range widely, and in #DVpit I’ll be looking to find gems in all categories I represent. On the adult side, I’ll be keeping an eye out especially for #ownvoices adult contemporary romance of all sorts, culturally diverse women’s fiction with a magical realist thread and/or a story involving family secrets, and LGBTQ literary fiction that feels fresh and new (think along the lines of ADAM by Ariel Schrag or THE LIFE AND DEATH OF SOPIE STARK by Anna North). In terms of YA and MG, right now I’d particularly love to see voicey contemporary realistic coming of age stories by authors of color, as well as culturally diverse magical realism with a literary feel. I’m also actively looking for LGBTQ contemporary middle grade with humor and heart.”
Carrie Pestritto is an agent with Prospect Agency who represents MG and YA, as well as women’s fiction, memoir, commercial fiction, romance, and nonfiction.
“I am looking for diverse voices that don’t solely deal with minorities feeling uncomfortable in their skin or accepting their identity, etc., but showcases them more complexly/fully. I would love to find a great MG superhero book, epic YA fantasy, or beautiful women’s fiction. Growing up, I always wanted to find representations of my race/minorities in general that showed them simply as people, rather than over-hyping the fact that they were the ‘others.’”
That’s it for the agent blurbs, but remember – these 30 agents aren’t the only ones participating! Make sure you’re following @Beth_Phelan for all #DVpit news, and good look to everyone entering!