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Name: Saba Sulaiman
Agency: Talcott Notch Literary Services
Bio: Saba Sulaiman is an agent at Talcott Notch Literary Services, a boutique agency located in Milford, CT. She holds a BA from Wellesley College and an MA from the University of Chicago, where she studied modern Persian literature. She joined the team after working as an editorial intern at Sourcebooks, where she worked primarily on their romance line. Being a first generation immigrant who is constantly negotiating her own identity and sense of belonging in a place she now calls “home,” she is committed to highlighting more diverse voices with compelling stories to tell; stories that demonstrate the true range of perspectives that exist in this world, and address urgent and often underexplored issues in fiction with veracity and heart.
What you’re currently seeking: She’s looking primarily to build her Middle Grade and Young Adult lists, and is particularly interested in contemporary realistic stories. She’s also actively seeking category romance (all subgenres except paranormal), literary, upmarket, and commercial fiction, tightly plotted, character-driven psychological thrillers, and cozy mysteries ala Agatha Christie. Follow her on Twitter @agentsaba.
Name: Patricia Nelson
Agency: Marsal Lyon Literary Agency
Bio: Patricia Nelson has been a literary agent with Marsal Lyon Literary Agency since 2014, representing women’s fiction, romance, and select literary fiction, as well as all genres of young adult and middle grade fiction. Recent sales include books placed with St. Martin’s Press, Simon and Schuster, and Penguin Random House, among others. Patricia holds master’s degrees from the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Southern California and, prior to joining the world of publishing, spent several years teaching literature and writing at the college level. She is actively building her list and is currently seeking new talent in all genres she represents.
What you rep: contemporary romance, historical romance, women’s fiction, upmarket/book club fiction, young adult (all genres), middle grade (all genres)
What you’re currently seeking: All of the above!
Name: Courtney Miller-Callihan
Agency: Handspun Literary Agency
Bio: Courtney Miller-Callihan founded Handspun Literary Agency in 2016, after more than ten years with Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. She is a hands-on editorial agent whose eclectic list includes historical fiction, women’s fiction, romance, mysteries, YA novels, humor, and practical nonfiction.
A graduate of the University of California, Santa Cruz (B.A., Literature), and Johns Hopkins University (M.A., English), she lives in San Diego with her family, and travels frequently for meetings and conferences. She is always looking for stories she can’t stop reading.
What you rep: Romance (all genres except inspirational), women’s fiction, mainstream fiction, mystery novels, YA novels, nonfiction
What you’re currently seeking: Fresh, creative new work in any of the genres and subgenres I represent. Diversity is a plus; ownvoices preferred.
Name: Stephanie Doig
Publisher: Carina Press
Bio: Stephanie began her career at Harlequin eight years ago and has been working with the Carina Press team since 2011. In her time at Harlequin she has worked as a proofreader, copy editor, and author liaison before moving to the editor’s desk. Stephanie reads across genres, but is especially interested in contemporary romances with smart, sharp dialogue; fast-paced romantic suspense; and paranormal/urban fantasy romance series with high sexual tension and solid world building.
What you’re currently seeking: Contemporary romance, paranormal romance, urban fantasy romance, romantic suspense, erotic romance, LGBTQIA romance.
Name: Gwen Hayes
Publisher bio: Riptide Publishing is a boutique publisher of some of the finest LGBTQ fiction available today. Created by industry veterans, Riptide Publishing sought to bring the Manhattan-quality aesthetic to small-press, author-friendly publishing—and in doing so, to elevate and integrate positive LGBTQ representation into the mainstream. Riptide Publishing now fills a critical niche in the general fiction market: quality books, pristinely packaged, that satisfy readers’ desires for rich, plotty, well-edited, queer-positive stories.
Personal bio: Author of Romancing the Beat: Story Structure for Romance Novels, Gwen Hayes has been freelance editing since 2008. If you are looking for a romance-positive editor, you have found her. Gwen has been blessed to work with USA Today and New York Times bestselling authors like Elle Kennedy, Crista McHugh, Anne Marsh, and Kate Pearce.
In addition to freelance editing at Fresh Eyes Critique (fresheyescritique.com), Gwen also edits for Riptide Publishing and Gemma Halliday Publishing. She’s worked for several publishers, including Entangled Publishing where she was Editorial Director of the Scandalous line as well as senior editor for projects in Brazen, Indulgence, and Edge.
What you’re currently seeking: Riptide publishes LGBTQ books with romantic or erotic focus; all heat levels from sweet romance to erotica are welcome. I’m a huge romance fan–so I am easily charmed by traditional tropes with queer-positive lens, both with and without queer-focused narratives. Think–older brother’s best friend, fish out of water, friends to lovers, office romance, and I’m one of those weirdos who love amnesia stories!
Name: Kristine Swartz
Publisher: Berkley (Penguin/Random House)
Bio: Kristine is an associate editor at The Berkley Publishing Group, where she acquires romance and women’s fiction. She is a graduate of New York University and has been with Penguin Random House since 2012.
What you’re currently Seeking: romance, women’s fiction.