Friday, July 24, 2009

Agent EK is Avidly Seeking Middle Grade and YA

I'll post about Necon and RWA shortly, but while you're waiting for my reports, I thought you'd be interested to know that one of our junior agents at L. Perkins Agency has declared her love of YA and is aggressively seeking new authors, so tell you friends and family!!

Below is EK's description of what she's looking for:

"I’m tired of getting queries from authors who don’t currently read YA, never read YA, say books published today are terrible, but they heard that Harry Potter lady made more than the Queen, and hey, they can do that! Writing for kids is easy, right?

I love YA books. I loved them when I was a kid and I still love them now. I want to see manuscripts from people who love it as much as I do. I want to find the books that kids are going to remember with fondness. I inhaled Lois Duncan, LJ Smith, Babysitter’s Club, Sweet Valley, etc, etc. These days I’m excited by the writing done by Suzanne Collins, Kristin Cashore, Claudia Gray. I’m also into the teen novels by people like Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, Barry Lyga and others. I’m looking for smart middle grade and teen novels. (No picture books, please.) I like fantasy and paranormal, and other odd things. Zombies are pretty big at the moment, and I’d also like to see witches, psychics, time travel and superheroes. As far as non-genre, I like strong, female heroines and books with fresh voices and a quirky sense of humor. I’m really sick of knock-off “Harry Potters’ and “Twilights.”

Lori told me to list some of my favorite TV shows to give a better sense of my taste. I liked Buffy, Gilmore Girls, Veronica Mars, How I Met Your Mother, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Justice League, Firefly, True Blood, Project Runway, Top Chef.... As I kid I loved Jem and the Holograms (magic earrings = always good) and Get Smart."

Send queries directly to EK at

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

R.I.P. Charles Brown

I started going to Horror, Fantasy and sci-fi conventions two decades ago, and every time I went, Charles Brown, the founding editor of Locus, was there. He was everywhere and knew everyone. I guess I thought he'd be there forever, because I was certainly a bit shocked to learn that he had died.

When I read his obit, I was even more impressed. He had started Locus as a means to secure Boston as the site of the annual World Science Fiction convention and then continued publishing it, turning it into a major voice for a genre. As someone who has started her own share of niche publications, that was quite a feat.

He'll be missed.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Trend Spotting, and Bosom Heaving

I love it when I can read the New York Times Book Review when I get it (instead of the middle of the next week). This issue is also very thin, but interesting. Professor Christopher Benfey reviewed 4 lit bio novels and declared that "if these books are any indication, the biographical fever in current fiction has yet to run its course." And that statement ran three pages after a review of a novel based on the life of Charles Dickens' wife. So dust off your notes for that novel about Bram Stoker's mistress or Mae West's Secret Diaries.

The reason I was able to read the NYTBR was because I was at finally at the pool this weekend, where I was also reading BEYOND HEAVING BOSOMS. A friend came by and asked, "Is that your autobiography?" Makes me wonder what people think about me?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

So Much has Happened

So I go away for a week (to a cabin in Maine where I'm promised both TV and Internet and there is neither!!! The guy I rented the place from tells me I can use his next door neighbor's computer, but I'm in the midst of editing a Threesomes anthology for Ravenous Romance, and I don't feel like explaining why I've downloaded 13 menage stories to some guy's desktop) and so much has happened - and I don't mean the MJ funeral.

Editors are being fired again in droves (a bunch at Perseus, 100 people at Penguin UK), but the saddest firing for me was the closing of Black Lace/Nexxus and the "making redundant" of its editor, Adam Neville, a pretty brilliant guy who could appreciate both creative horror and erotica, two of my passions. I hope someone in England (or here) will scoop him up, but print publishing looks pretty dismal these days.

RWAchange seems to be gathering steam. If you don't know what this is, you must not be a romance writer.

At least 500 members of RWA have joined forces to get the national romance writers organization to recognize epublished romance writers as peers to their print colleagues. The times they are a changing.