May 12, 2017

Agent of Query Kombat 2017 (partial list)

We have 33 agents and counting joining us this year. Some are new. Some are established. All are looking to make requests! To everyone entering this year, best of luck! It's gearing up to be our biggest year yet.

If you need a refresher on the submission guidelines (the are a lot of them), click here.

Quick reminders before we get to the good stuff:
Don't miss the submission window from May 17th - May 19th.

Also,On May 12 (today), we'll be hosting a Twitter party where writers can reach out to the Judges and ask questions about their entries, writing, querying, etc. Join us at 3:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. EST. We'll be using the hashtag #QKChat.  Be sure to take the opportunity to follow our Judges

If you haven't signed up for our new forum, head on over and create a profile. We have some updates coming to the forum really soon, so be on the look out!

Lastly, please consider a small donation to the QK Crew. We have a lot of great ideas we want to implement to make Query Kombat a better experience for kombatants, as well as entrants and spectators. That requires an immense amount of time away from our jobs, families, and our own WIPs. Some of our ideas (like the chat room that will soon open in the forum) isn't free, and if we want to keep it up next year, we're going to need your help.

now for what you've all be waiting for...

Agent of Query Kombat 2017!

Leon Husock - L. Perkins Agency

Prior to joining the L. Perkins Agency, Leon was an associate agent at Anderson Literary Management. He has a BA in Literature from Bard College and attended the Columbia Publishing Course.

Leon is actively building his client list.

He has a particular interest in science fiction & fantasy, young adult and middle-grade novels filled with strong characters and original premises, but keeps an open mind for anything that catches his eye.

He is also looking for historical fiction set in the 20th century, particularly the 1980s or earlier.


Caitlen Rubino-Bradway - LKG Agency

I joined the LKG Agency in 2008, thereby disproving the theory that no English major ever does anything with their degree. Before that I worked at another literary agency, Don Congdon Associates, where I had the behind-the-scenes thrill of seeing Kathryn Stockett’s The Help first come in (and getting one of the first reads). And before that I was getting my Masters in English and Publishing from Rosemont College. I have enjoyed my apprenticeship under Lauren very much, and I am now actively looking to build my own list, which includes (after a surprisingly minimal amount of begging and pleading on my part), securing Lauren’s agreement to open the agency to considering middle grade and young adult fiction.

In my spare time, I am an author in my own right (or is that write?). My first book, Lady Vernon and Her Daughter, which I co-wrote with my mother, was released by Crown in 2009. We also contributed to Jane Austen Made Me Do It, published by Ballantine in 2011. My first middle grade novel, Ordinary Magic, was published by Bloomsbury Children’s in 2012.


Clelia Gore - Martin Literary Management

It was when Clelia first read Charlotte’s Web in the first grade that she got hooked by the magic of books. Her love of children’s books carried through adulthood and she is delighted to dedicate her life to bringing quality books and stories to young (and whimsical adult!) readers.

Clelia is originally from the suburbs of New York City. She has a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Boston College. She received her J.D. from American University, Washington College of Law and practiced law as a corporate litigator in New York City.

In 2011, she decided to dedicate her career to books and reentered graduate school at Emerson College, where she received a master’s degree in Publishing and Writing. While she was studying publishing and taking creative writing courses at Emerson, Clelia gained firsthand experience in the publishing industry working in the children’s book division at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and in academic books at Oxford University Press. She also taught academic writing and research courses to freshman students as a graduate student faculty member at Emerson College.

Clelia attends writing and publishing conferences. She also sits on the board of directors for Poetry Northwest magazine.

Clelia acquires picture book, middle grade and young adult books. She is particularly interested in developing her nonfiction clientele. With apologies, Clelia is no longer accepting new adult fiction queries at this time.

Agent Website

Jaida Temperly - New Leaf Literary

Jaida’s primary focus is adult fiction, with a special affinity for literary fiction, magical realism, historical fiction, upmarket fiction, horror, and speculative. She also loves stories that shed light on marginalized experiences and question the “status-quo”, as well as titles that include #OwnVoices themes, international settings, political commentary, conspiracy theories, and alternate histories. Some of her all-time favorite adult fiction titles include: THE VEGETARIAN by Han Kang, THE SELLOUT by Paul Beatty, THE DINNER by Herman Koch, JONATHAN STRANGE & MR. NORRELL by Susanna Clarke, and A THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME by Mark Haddon.

Jaida is also interested in select prescriptive nonfiction with a commercial edge, such as YOU ARE A BADASS by Jen Sincero and THE POWER OF HABIT by Charles Duhigg, and forgotten/untold stories like HIDDEN FIGURES by Margot Lee Shetterly and the film LAND OF MINE. She enjoys narrative nonfiction titles that explore the darker corners of the human experience, such as STIFF by Mary Roach and SMOKE GETS IN YOUR EYES by Caitlin Doughty.

Finally, Jaida is on the lookout for outstanding YA and MG titles. Similar to her adult taste, she loves magical realism, literary fiction, fantasy, historical, and speculative titles, as well as those that push the boundaries between YA/adult. Some of her all-time favorite children’s titles include: CARAVAL by Stephanie Garber, THE HATE U GIVE by Angie Thomas, THE GREENGLASS HOUSE by Kate Milford, THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY by Trenton Lee Stewart, and NIGHTBIRD by Alice Hoffman.

Prior to joining New Leaf Literary, Jaida studied biology at The University of Wisconsin-Madison, and briefly attended medical school before moving to NYC to intern at Writers House. She loves art history, traveling, logic puzzles, secret societies, antiques, and numerous other topics that come in handy for Trivia Night and crossword puzzles.


Lauren Spieller - TriadaUS

Literary Agent Assistant Lauren Spieller comes to TriadaUS with a background in literary scouting and editorial consulting. She has a sharp editorial eye, and is passionate about author advocacy. Lauren is seeking Middle Grade and Young Adult fiction, as well as select Adult fiction and non-fiction. Whatever the age category or genre, Lauren is passionate about finding diverse and underrepresented voices.

In MG, she’s drawn to heartfelt contemporaries, contemporary fantasy and magical realism, and exciting adventures. Some of her recent favorites are Rules for Stealing Stars, George, The Thing About Jellyfish, Wonder, Hour of the Bees, and Rooftoppers. In YA, she’d love to find authentic teen voices in any and all genres. She is especially fond of fantasy, magical realism, and space operas; contemporary stories with a hook; and anything with a feminist bent. A few favorites include Dumplin’, Scorpio Races, An Ember in the Ashes, OCD Love Story, Six of Crows, The Raven Boys, and Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda.

In Adult, Lauren is seeking commercial fiction, particularly female-driven psychological thrillers (a la Lauren Beukes and Gillian Flynn), and immersive literary fantasies, such as The Night Circus, The Miniaturist, and A Darker Shade of Magic. She is also interested in female-driven Upmarket General Fiction, especially if it's funny or has a touch of magical realism (note that she is NOT looking for Romance), and unique non-fiction with an existing platform. She's particularly hungry for counter culture books, cocktail books with a twist/theme, or narrative nonfiction with a unique hook (if you’re the next Lindsey West, Roxanne Gay, or Lauren Duca, she wants to hear from you).


Mark Gottieb - Trident Media Group

Mark Gottlieb’s focus on publishing began at Emerson College, where he was a founding member of the Publishing Club, later its President, overseeing its first publication and establishing the Wilde Press.

After graduating with a degree in writing, literature and publishing, Mark began his career with the Vice President of Berkley Books (Penguin), working with leading editors.

His first position at the Trident Media Group literary agency was in foreign rights, selling the books of clients around the world. Mark later worked as Executive Assistant to Robert Gottlieb, Chairman of Trident, with responsibility for organizing/managing diverse authors and their complex business transactions. He next assumed the position of audio rights agent. Since Mark has managed the audio rights business, the annual sales volume has more than doubled. Mark showed great initiative and insight in identifying talented writers.

In passing the Audio Department's torch, Mark is building his own client list of writers. He is excited to work directly with authors, helping to manage and grow their careers with all of the unique resources that are available to Trident. Since that time he has ranked as high as #1 in Agents on in Overall Deals and other individual categories.


Danielle Burby - Nelson Literary Agency

I was always the class bookworm, but, for some reason, I spent most of high school convinced that my future was in Broadway. In fact, I felt really bad for the English teacher who told me she thought I was destined for a career in books because she was so very wrong. Turns out she knew me better than I thought! Of course, looking back, the fact that I never left the house without a minimum of two books (the book in progress and at least one backup) should probably have tipped me off.

I double majored in creative writing and women’s studies at Hamilton College (both “impractical majors” that have been incredibly practical for me) and figured out that creative writing classes do a really great job of honing your editing and critiquing skills. After internships at several top literary agencies and publishers, I spent four years at New York Agency and began building a client list before moving to NLA in January 2017.

As an agent based in New York City, I primarily represent YA and MG along with very select mystery and women’s fiction. I look for a strong narrative voice and a cast of characters I want to spend time with (which doesn’t necessarily mean they need to be likeable!). Something all of my clients have in common is the ability to sweep me up in their writing and make me grateful for a chance to spend time in their worlds. When I finish a novel and immediately want to thank the person who wrote it, I know I will have the enthusiasm to fight tooth and nail for that author.


Lisa Abellera - Kimberley Cameron & Associates

Lisa Abellera joined Kimberley Cameron and Associates in 2013 with a background in management, marketing, and finance. She has studied creative writing, design and business, earning her B.A. in Strategic Management from Dominican University of CA and her M.F.A. in Creative Writing from University of San Francisco.

Lisa had a successful career in the corporate world before joining the world of publishing. After editorial internships with an independent press and Kimberley Cameron & Associates, she now follows her true passion for books and writing. She leverages her business and marketing expertise to help authors navigate the complexities of publishing. She is excited to develop talented authors and help advance their careers. She is looking to form long-term, collaborative relationships with writers who are committed to putting forth their best work.

Lisa responds to well-crafted prose with strong hooks and high personal stakes, to idiosyncratic, sympathetic characters, to a tangible sense of place, to multicultural aspects and international settings, to page-turning twists, and to emotionally immersive fiction that explores the human condition, especially within family and close relationships.


Amanda Jain - Inklings Literary

Amanda Jain has loved books for as long as she can remember. When she was a kid, Amanda always had her head in a book. In her room, in the car, in the bathtub, wherever. She probably would have brought a book to the dinner table every evening if that was allowed.

After earning a BA in English, she worked in the trade department at W. W. Norton for seven years before leaving to pursue graduate studies. She graduated in 2011 with a MA in the history of decorative arts. Amanda then joined Inklings in 2014, first as an intern and then as Michelle’s assistant.

Amanda is primarily interested in adult fiction in the following categories: historical fiction (in all genres), women’s / book club / upmarket fiction, romance (particularly historical, suspenseful, or with a comedic bent), mysteries (particularly historical or cozy, or historical cozies), and narrative nonfiction in the areas of social history, archaeology, art history, material culture, etc. She is also interested in select YA and MG projects with unique hooks and a strong voice.


Alison McDonald - The Rights Factory

In her eighth year at The Rights Factory, Ali is the lead agent specializing in children’s literature. She represents a select list of authors with projects ranging from novelty, board books, picture books, early readers, chapter books, and graphic novels, to middle grade, young adult and new adult fiction and non-fiction. She enjoys working primarily with debut authors, but also has the distinguished pleasure of representing literary stars among her international clients, including New York Times bestselling author Laura Nowlin (If He Had Been With Me and This Song is (Not) For You), Hugo-award-winning Emily Pohl-Weary (Not Your Ordinary Wolf Girl), and multi-award-nominated and Best Book-listed author Jo Treggiari (forthcoming Blood Will Out), among others. Ali is living the dream of having a job she loves.

In the wild, Ali can be seen typically reading a book (kidlit, of course), watching guilty pleasure TV (currently Ash vs The Evil Dead, Scandal, and Riverdale), instructing at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies Creative Writing Program, or chatting with writers at meetups!

Elevator pitch: Ali is Anne of Green Gables meets Jerry Maguire.


Andrew Buckley - Curiosity Quills Press

Hi, my name is Andrew and I’m the Acquisitions Manager for CQ which means I oversee submissions of new titles, assign them to a beta reader for approval, and then send contracts the authors.

I’m a professional writer and published author who loves comic books, movies, and has a secret agenda to take over the world (shh, don’t tell anyone)

I tend to read a lot of fantasy these days including Robert Jordan, Anne Rice, Douglas Adams, Neil Gaiman, and most recently, Blake Crouch. I’m also a massive geek and am currently following multiple comic book series’ with Marvel, DC, Image, and Boom and devour genre-heavy TV shows like Hannibal, Ray Donovan, Arrow, Dominion, and TBBT.

I believe humor can combat anything. Except Liam Neeson. Nothing can beat Liam Neeson.



Jordy Albert - The Booker Albert Agency

Jordy Albert is a Literary Agent and co-founder of The Booker Albert Literary Agency. She holds a B.A. in English from Pennsylvania State University, and a M.A. from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. She has worked with Marisa Corvisiero during her time at the L. Perkins Agency and the Corvisiero Literary Agency.


HUGE thanks to the agents participating this year. Remember, this is only a partial list. Visit Michelle and Laura for their portion.

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