Friday, February 11, 2011

Two new Canadian literary agents at TLA: one looking for adult books; one for children's books

Transatlantic Literary Agency
72 Glengowan Road
Toronto, ON M4N 1G4

Meghan Macdonald is accepting queries for adult fiction and nonfiction. She does not handle children's books, poetry, screenplays, YA, or YA/crossover manuscripts.

Meghan is new to the publishing world.  She lived in the UK for two years,working for literary agent David Grossman.  Upon returning to Canada in 2009, Meghan began working for TLA as an administrative assistant, researcher and assistant to the agents. She has recently begun building her own list as a literary agent with TLA with excellent clients she is proud to work with.

Meghan says: "My particular interests are in literary fiction, mystery novels, historical fiction (that has been impeccably researched but is still a fictional narrative), and topical exposé non-fiction that is persuasive and/or a sustained polemic. I am also interested in scholarly non-fiction, particularly historical treatments, that are intelligent but accessible without being simplistic (examples are Augustus by John Buchan, Apocalypse by Neil Faulkner, The Sea Kingdoms by Alistair Moffat, and Sailing The Wine-Dark Sea by Thomas Cahill)."

Query by email to
Put your name and the title of the manuscript in the subject line (example: Query: John Smith - My Manuscript). Please send a 1-page cover letter in the body of the email and as an attachment, and attach a 1-page synopsis and the first 30-pages of the manuscript or thereabouts where a natural break occurs. Make sure all your attachments are free of grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. Meghan wantw to see a polished excerpt or manuscript (double-spaced please), not your first draft
More about Meghan Macdonald here.

Patricia Ocampo with author Kenneth Oppal
and his wife Philippa Sheppard
Patricia Ocampo represents children’s books (picture books, early readers, middle-grade, young adult), both fiction and non-fiction. But absolutely no poetry or verse.

In her first position in publishing, Patricia Ocampo divided her time between the children’s editorial departments at HarperCollins US and HarperCollins Canada, working out of the Toronto office. Since 2008, she has worked in sales, both at HarperCollins and Hachette Book Group. Patricia is currently president of IBBY Canada, one of 72 national sections of the International Board on Books for Young People, a non-profit organization that helps children in crisis through literacy initiatives.

Please email your complete manusript in PDF to:
Submissions with only a summary or sample chapters will be immediately deleted. This applies to all submissions, not just picture books. The body of your email should include a short synopsis and your current city. Due to the volume of submissions received, further enquiries will be sent only for submissions being actively considered. More about Patricia here.

Other agents at TLA accepting new clients:
Samantha Haywood represents both fiction and nonfiction. In fiction, she represents literary fiction and upmarket commercial fiction. Getting more specific, yes to: literary thrillers and upmarket mystery, historical fiction, smart contemporary fiction, upmarket women’s fiction (but no romance writing), and cross-over novels (but no young adult novels unless they have adult trade potential as well).

Samantha also represents nonfiction She prefers narrative nonfiction, especially on culturally relevant topics. Some examples: investigative journalism, politics; women’s issues; memoirs (must be truly original or well known subjects); environmental issues; historical narratives handled in refreshing ways; sexuality; and true crime with societal implications. Essentially I’m looking for a strong narrative drive and distinctive voice at all times.

Samantha also represents graphic novels (fiction and nonfiction, preferably full length graphic novels, although story collections will be considered. Memoirs, biographies, travel narratives and other nonfiction graphica also welcome.

Query by email only to:
Authors are encouraged to email a cover letter with an attachment of maximum 20-page writing sample/excerpt (Microsoft Word document), along with a publishing history and synopsis. Please note if other agents are also considering the project. Due to the volume of submissions received, replies will be sent only for submissions being actively considered. More about Samantha Haywood here.

Marie Campbell specializes in children’s writers, with a particular interest in middle-grade fiction. She is not actively acquiring new clients at this time but is open to concise query letters via email.  No non-fiction or poetry collections. Query by email only to:

Highlight past publishing credits and/or referral from published authors/TLA clients. Do not submit further writing samples, either by post or email, until contacted. More about Marie here.

Brian Henry has a "How to Get Published" workshop coming up in Burlington on February 19 with agent Alisha Sevigny of the Rights Factory (see here). On May 7, he'll be hosting the "From the Horse's Mouth" seminar at Ryerson University, with literary agent Marilyn Biderman, Mike O'Connor, publisher of Insomniac Press, and Lynn Henry, Publishing Director of Doubleday Canada (details here).

Brian also has a few "Writing for Children & Young Adults" workshops coming up, on February 26 in Barrie (see here), on March 5 in Toronto (see here), on April 9 in Peterbrough (see here), and on April 10 in Kingston (see here).

For information about all of Brian's writing workshops and creative writing courses, see here.

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