PITCH YOUR BOOK TO A LITERARY AGENT:
These one-on-one in-person meetings at the 2024 Minnesota Writing Workshop 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 2024 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. We have seen many, many writers sign with agents after connecting after our conferences.
Savannah Brooks is an agent with KT Literary. Savannah represents all types of children’s books as well as adult contemporary/commercial fiction, romcoms, thrillers/mystery/suspense, and horror. She’s especially interested in stories that teach her something new, add to a larger sociopolitical conversation, and highlight underrepresented identities and cultures. In kidlit, she seeks picture books, chapter books, middle grade, young adult fiction, and also young adult nonfiction (from authors with platforms). Learn more about Savannah here.
Maria Bell is a literary agent with Sterling Lord Literistic. “I am looking primarily for adult fiction, especially the following: literary fiction with strong narrative momentum; LGBTQ fiction; rom coms (especially queer ones) that play with but also diverge from common tropes; stories involving humans’ interactions with animals and/or wilderness; grounded stories that involve elements of magical realism; coming-of-age stories that center the post-teenage, new-to-adulting years; mystery/suspense with an unexpected twist.” In both fiction and nonfiction, she’s partial to stories involving the natural world, queer identities, baseball, and all those that grapple with conflicts and truths from which most of us instinctively distance ourselves. Learn more about Maria here.
Catherine Hedrick-Armstrong is a literary agent with The Purcell Agency. A prolific reader of many genres, Cathie represents young adult fiction, contemporary and historical romance, upmarket women’s fiction, mysteries, and thrillers. She deliberately keeps her client list small to give her authors the attention each deserves. Cathie looks for manuscripts that catch her attention within the first few pages. If you can evoke an emotional response in the opening pages—make her laugh out loud, cause her pulse to race, make her cry—you’ve got a winner. Cathie is never interested in Science Fiction or High Fantasy in any genre; however, fantasy with paranormal/supernatural elements, if absolutely grounded in the real world, can be a good fit. Learn more about Catherine here.
Mary Cummings is a literary agent and the founder of Great River Literary. “I represent fiction, literary nonfiction and poetry for children and teens, from board and picture books to middle grade (including chapter books) and young adult. (No adult projects, please).” Great River Literary is an agency devoted exclusively to representing authors and author/illustrators of books for children and teens. Learn more about Mary here.
Brittany Torres Rivera is an editorial assistant with Graywolf Press, and is taking pitches on behalf of her imprint. Graywolf seeks poetry, memoirs, essays, novels, translations, and short stories. “Our editors are looking for high quality literary fiction, nonfiction, and poetry that combine a distinct voice with a distinct vision. Our editors seek out and solicit promising work from authors that they encounter in the pages of magazines, at writing conferences, and in other venues.” Learn more about Brittany here.
Michael Croy is a literary agent with Northstar Literary. Michael is interested in acquiring general/mainstream fiction – stories told with heart and humor that have a strong sense of place with characters you quickly cheer for (or against!). Recent fiction favorites like Whiskey When We’re Dry by John Larison, When All is Said by Anne Griffin or The Bear by Andrew Krivak. On the narrative nonfiction side he is looking for thoughtful pop culture commentary, or cultural history, think Valeria Luiselli’s powerful Tell Me How It Ends, or Chuck Klosterman’s The Nineties, or This Woman’s Work by Sinead Gleeson and Kim Gordon. Sports biographies that are less about sport and more about personal struggles to overcome political, cultural, or physical hurdles – think of Path Lit By Lightning: The life of Jim Thorpe by David Maraniss. Learn more about Michael here.
Laura Zats is a literary agent with Headwater Literary. (Note: Concerning the 10-minute “pitch” appointments at the event, Laura’s agency handles these opportunities in a specific way. In her own words: “Headwater, as a policy doesn’t do traditional pitch sessions, but we DO perform consultations, where we meet with anyone and answer questions & give feedback, rather than just give a yes/no.”) Laura represents young adult books, science fiction, fantasy, romance, mystery, literary fiction with speculative elements, and select contemporary and historical fiction. “I particularly love to work on books that appeal to readers of different genres or subgenres—if you’re pitching something that crosses multiple areas of my list, I want to see it!” Learn more about Laura here.
Jennie Goloboy is a literary agent with Donald Maass Literary Agency. “I’m particularly looking for fun, innovative, diverse, and progressive science fiction and fantasy for adults. I think that one of the most important jobs of science fiction is to imagine a future we want to live in. I’m also looking for history for a popular, adult audience. I’m a particular fan of histories of an idea, and narratives about early America. I’m not interested in historical novels, or in memoir.” Learn more about Jennie here.
Erik Hane is a literary agent with Headwater Literary. He is seeking: literary fiction, political nonfiction, history (especially American), literary nonfiction & essays; and popular science. At Headwater, Erik’s client list features some of the sharpest and most essential critics, artists, novelists, journalists, essayists, and commentators working today. His projects reliably find homes across a diverse swath of the publishing industry, from Big-5 commercial publishers to prestigious independent houses to university presses. He is looking for writers whose work—in both style and rigor—is up for the challenge of saying something indispensable about our increasingly chaotic world. Learn more about Erik here.
Meg Gaertner is a senior editor with Flux and Jolly Fish Press. She is seeking young adult works in all genres and voices. In young adult, she is happy to consider contemporary, science fiction, historical fiction, horror, thrillers, mystery, contemporary fantasy, genre-blending stories, “out-of-the-box” stories that combine social commentary with a killer voice and a fresh premise, diversity representation, and more. Learn more about Meg here.
Lisa Kloskin is an acquisitions editor at Broadleaf Books, an imprint of 1517 Media. Broadleaf publishes books that engage readers in fresh, substantive, timely, and inspiring reflection on what it is to live with meaning and connection; we specialize in religion, spirituality, social justice, culture, and personal growth. She seeks all perspectives, including BIPOC and feminist. She enjoys self-help that goes beyond the simple how-to, to meet a deeper and more existential need; as well as new approaches to personal spiritual practice. Learn more about Lisa here.
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ADDED ONLINE PITCHING: To ensure that writers have a robust and diverse lineup of agents & editors to pitch, 2024 Minnesota Writing Workshop attendees will have the ability to also pitch literary agents at the Writing Day Workshops *online* event that follows the 2024 MWW on our calendar.
That event is the Ohio Writing Workshop, May 10-11, 2024, which will have 30-40 agents taking one-on-one Zoom virtual pitches.
This means that 2024 MWW attendees can have access to pitching all those online OWW agents — pitches still at $29 each — without being a formal registrant for the online May 2024 event. (That said, if you want to formally register for the Ohio conference and have access to all classes and panels, let us know, as there is a discount for confirmed Minnesota attendees.)
If you are interested in this added pitching opportunity, the first step is to get formally registered for Minnesota. Following the MWW conference on April 6, 2024, we will be in touch with all Minnesota attendees and ask them if they want to partake in pitching online agents at the 2024 OWW (May 10-11). At that time, you can communicate your pitch requests and purchase meeting time.
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More 2024 agents/editors 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. You can pitch as many agents & editors as like you wish.
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.)