Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Six literary agents who represent short story collections (and many other things: literary and commercial fiction, MG and YA fiction, narrative nonfiction, memoir, etc )

Note: Don't ever miss a post on Quick Brown Fox. Fill in your email in the box to the right under my bio, and get each post delivered to your Inbox. ~ Brian

It’s difficult finding agents who represent short story collections, because there’s not much money in short stories. But I’ve uncovered half a dozen agents who are seeking short stories and who are currently accepting submissions:

Chad Luibl of Janklow and Nesbit. This is a large firm with many well-known authors. Chad Luibl is an assistant there, very low on the totem pole. But that’s okay; it means he needs clients. 
He says: “I tend to lean more toward darker tales and gritty settings, culture-crossing perspectives, structures that are a bit experimental (see David Mitchell’s Cloud Atlas), and always narratives with a strong emotional core. Having lived in Poland and Hungary, I have a niche-interest in books that feel Eastern European in voice/perspective (or explore post-Soviet and Cold War themes), and I find anything that deals with exile and expatriation immediately arresting.”
Specifically, he’s seeking : Commercial and literary fiction, horror, fantasy and, science fiction, crime fiction, mysteries, thrillers, LGBTQ, and military fiction. plus middle grade and young adult fiction. His favourite sub-genres: magical realism, military, southern literary, speculative fiction, and westerns.
In nonfiction, he’s looking for humor, LGBTQ, memoir, pop culture, sports, travel and true crime.
Query Chad at: cluibl@janklow.com
Include the word “Query” in the subject line. Send your query letter, a synopsis and the first fifty pages of your manuscript attached as a word document. 

Katie Grimm of Don Congdon Associates: This is a prominent well-established agency that’s been around since 1938. They represented Ray Bradbury (author of Farenheit 451 among other well-known science fiction books) and currently represent such well-known authors as David Sedaris (Theft by Finding) and Kathryn Stocket (The Help)
Katie joined Don Congdo Assoiciates in 2007. She represents literary fiction (be it voicey, historical, speculative, or mysterious), up-market women’s fiction, cohesive short story collections, and graphic novels.
The key is “cohesive” collections of stories – there needs to be something strong holding them together.
Katie says: “Most generally, I focus on adult literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, middle grade, and young adult fiction.  Across all genres and ages, I’ll always be interested in the darker and weirder side of the human condition as well as previously under- or misrepresented experiences and voices.”
Query Katie at: dca@doncongdon.com
Include the word “Query” and the agent’s full name in your subject heading. As always in a query, include a short description of your work and your relevant background information and must all fit easily on one page. Also paste the first story of your collection into the email. No attachments.
Full submission guidelines here.

Christopher Rhodes has been involved in the publishing business and agenting for years, but only recently joined The Stuart Agency. Prior to that, he was an agent at The James Fitzgerald Agency. Previous to that, he worked at The Carol Mann Agency and in the sales and marketing departments at Simon and Schuster.
Christopher specializes in literary fiction and nonfiction. He’s actively seeking queries in the following areas: literary fiction (including thriller and horror); connected stories/essays (humorous and serious); memoir; creative/narrative nonfiction; history; religion; pop culture; and art & design. 
“What would I dearly like to see right now?” says Christopher. “Horror. I really want to read and advocate for a smart and literary horror novel. I don’t get many submissions in this area.” 
You can read an interview with Christopher here.
Query Christopher at: christopher@stuartagency.com
For fiction, include the first 50 pages; for nonfiction, include a proposal. A Word document or a PDF is fine.

Waverly Place Literary Agency. This is a one-woman outfit for literary agent Debbie Carter, Who doesn’t seem to have many (or perhaps any) sales. This agency should be a last resort. She’s seeking short story and poetry collections with popular appeal.


Sarah Yake has been with Frances Collin Literary Agency since 2005 and handles foreign and subrights in addition to her own client list.
“A quirky, interesting voice is my number one consideration,” says Sarah. “I love a touch of humor, whether overt or sly. My reading tastes are wide-ranging and my goal is to keep building a similarly diverse, multi-genre list.”
Specifically, in fiction, she’s looking for action/adventure, commercial, fantasy, general fiction, historical, literary, science fiction, women’s fiction and short story collections.
She also seeks middle grade and young adult fiction.
In nonfiction, she’s looking for biography, history, LGBTQ, memoir, and pop culture.
See more at Manuscript Wish List here and at Publishers Marketplace here.
Query Sarah at: queries@francescollin.com
Paste the first five pages of your manuscript into the email. No attachments.
Full submission guidelines here.

Renée Zuckerbrot founded the Renée Zuckerbrot Literary Agency after working as an editor at Doubleday and Franklin Square Press/Harper’s Magazine. She is a member of the AAR and Authors Guild. She serves on PEN’s Membership Committee, and is a Board member of the Council of Literary Magazines and Presses (CLMP) and Slice Magazine. You can read an interview with Renée and her colleagues at Poets & Writers. See her top ten list of short stories at Storyville.
Authors represented by Renée have won or been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction, the PEN Jacqueline Bograd Weld Prize for Biography, the National Magazine Award, the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing, the NYPL Young Lions Fiction Award, B&N’s Discover Great New Writers Award, the Story Prize, the PEN/O. Henry Prize, the Shirley Jackson Award, the Locus, the Hugo, the Nebula, the Pushcart, and others.
Renée’s own boutique agency, seems to be part of Massie & McQuilkin Literary Agency, which means she has the backing of a much larger agency.
Renée is seeking literary and commercial adult fiction and narrative nonfiction, with a particular focus on science, history, and popular culture.
Query Renée at: Submissions@rzagency.com
Include a synopsis of your project, your publication history (if any), a brief bio, and your contact information. Please also attach an excerpt, up to three sample chapters (or three short stories), as one Word document. The attachment should be paginated and double-spaced.

Bringing Up Beauty by Sylvia McNicoll,
one of the guest speakers for
the Writing Kid Lit class
Brian Henry will lead “You can write great dialogue," workshops on Saturday, July 15, in Mississauga (see here) and Saturday, July 22, in London (see here).

And there are three weekly creative writing courses, introductory to advanced, starting soon:
Exploring Creative Writing, Tuesday afternoons, July 4 – August 22, in Burlington. See here.
Next Step in Creative Writing, Wednesday evenings, July 5 – August 23, in Burlington. See here.
Intensive Creative WritingWednesday afternoons, July 5 – August 23, in Burlington. See here.
      Details of all three courses  here.  

Brian Henry will lead a Writing for Children & for Young Adult workshop on Saturday, August 12, in Collingwood with literary agent Monica Pacheco (see here). 
In the fall, Brian will lead a weekly Writing Kid Lit class, Thursday mornings, Oct 5 – Nov 30, in Oakville, with guest authors Sylvia McNicoll and Jennifer Mook-Sang (see here).
Note: For updated listings of Writing for Children & for Young adult workshops and for weekly Kid lit classes, see here (and scroll down).

Join us for a Fall Colours Writing Retreat, at Arowhon Pines Resort in Algonquin Park, Friday, Sept 15 – Sunday, Sept 17 (see here).

Also, in the fall, Brian will lead a full range of courses, including (for the first time) a creative writing course in Toronto:
Speechless by Jennifer Mook-Sang,
one of the guest speakers for
the Writing Kid Lit class
Intensive Creative Writing, Monday mornings, Sept 25 – Dec 4, in Toronto. See here.
Next Step in Creative Writing, Tuesday afternoons Sept 19 – Nov 21, in Burlington.
Extreme Creative Writing, Wednesday afternoons,Sept 20 – Dec 6, in Burlington
Writing Personal Stories, Wednesday evenings, Sept 27 – Nov 15, in Burlington. See here.
Writing Kid Lit, Thursday mornings, Oct 5 – Nov 30, in Oakville, with guest authors Sylvia McNicoll and Jennifer Mook-Sang. See here.
Welcome to Creative Writing, Thursday afternoons, Sept 28 – Nov 30, in Burlington
Intensive Creative Writing, Thursday evenings, Sept 28 – Nov 30 in Georgetown. See here.

For more information or to reserve a spot in any workshop, retreat, or weekly course, email brianhenry@sympatico.ca
Read reviews of Brian’s courses and workshops here.
                                         
See Brian’s complete current schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.


Navigation tips: Always check out the labels underneath a post; they’ll lead you to various distinct collections of postings. Also, if you're searching for a literary agent who represents a particular type of book, check out this post. 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Writing Personal Stories course, Sept 27 – Nov 15, in Burlington

Writing Personal Stories
8 weeks of sharing and writing
Wednesday evenings, 7 – 9 p.m.
September 27 – November 15, 2017
Appleby United Church, 4407 Spruce Ave, Burlington, Ontario (Map here.)

If you've ever considered writing your personal stories, this course is for you. We’ll look at memoirs, travel writing, personal essays, family history ~ personal stories of all kinds. Plus, of course, we’ll work on creativity and writing technique and have fun doing it. Whether you want to write a book or just get your thoughts down on paper, this weekly course will get you going. 
We'll reveal the tricks and conventions of telling true stories, and we’ll show you how to use the techniques of the novel to recount actual events. Weekly writing exercises and friendly feedback from the instructor will help you move forward on this writing adventure. Whether you want to write for your family and friends or for a wider public, don't miss this course.

Instructor Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada's most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Saint John. But his proudest boast is that he’s has helped many of his students get published.
Read reviews of the Writing Personal Stories course here, and see other reviews here.

Fee:  $159.29 plus 13% hst = 180
Number of attendees strictly limited.
To reserve your spot, email: brianhenry@sympatico.ca

See Brian’s complete current schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, St. John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Four paying markets for short stories, poetry, creative nonfiction and reviews

Note: Don't ever miss a post on Quick Brown Fox. Fill in your email in the box to the right under my bio and get each post delivered to your Inbox. Also, if you’re not yet on my newsletter, send me an email, including your locale, to: brianhenry@sympatico.ca ~ Brian

Crannóg is Ireland’s premiere fiction and poetry magazine. Cronnog’s mission is to publish the work of Irish writers alongside the best available worldwide. Pays: €50 per story, €30 per poem. 
Deadline: Submissions open July 1, close July 31, 2017.  Submission guidelines here.

Pantheon magazine publishes fiction and poetry inspired by the gods and goddesses. Pays 1 cent/word for fiction, $5 for poetry.
For the fall, they’re seeking pieces prompted by Tethys, Titaness of fresh water: Tethys is the Titan daughter of the sky and the earth, guardian of fresh water, mother of the river gods and sea nymphs.
“Tell us stories about rivers and inland seas, about water caverns–and those who protect them. Tell us about what happens to those who trespass against Tethys. We want to read about the delicate creatures blooming in rain puddles and about the dark awareness at the bottom of cenotes.
“Pantheon Magazine is interested in fresh, creative, and powerful fiction that grips us and doesn’t let us go. We like it quick and concise, dammit. Longer work is also considered, but brevity is appreciated. We have short attention spans. Please include a note as to how your story is inspired or relates to the theme/prompt you are submitting to. If you do not do this, we cannot guarantee your story will be read. A single sentence is sufficient.”
For poetry, Pantheon is “fond of form and very partial to poems that end in fireworks – literal, figurative this is open to interpretation. We want poems that dazzle, that leave us breathless, that explode with meaning and beauty.
“We’re primarily a fiction magazine, but as we are also music and movie lovers, we always welcome music, movie, and book reviews, so long as the music/movie/book you are reviewing is relatively new. Preferably within the past month or two. We’re a little more lenient with music and book reviews, as there’s so much good stuff out there that’s overlooked. Please follow the same formatting guidelines (more or less) as fiction submissions. Please keep reviews under 1000 words.
“Would you like to be our featured cover artist for one of our issues? Email a sample of you work to: PantheonMag@Gmail.com
“We’ll get back in touch.
“Every so often, we will do interviews with authors/musicians who we like. Feel free to email us if you are working on a project that you would like to chat with us about.
Deadline: July 31, 2017. Submission guidelines here.


Barking Sycamores is a literary journal entirely edited and operated by queer, neurodivergent people of color. Publishes Poetry, short fiction, hybrid genre, creative nonfiction, book reviews, and artwork submissions. They also welcome and publish essays about neurodivergence and the creation of literature. Payment not specified. 
Deadline: July 31, 2017. Submission guidelines here.


Room Family Secrets issue. All families have secrets. Rooted in guilt and shame, and passed on through the generations, these secrets can have unexpected reverberations in the present. We're seeking your best poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction. and
visual art that explores and exposes the dark and tangled secrets that haunt and shape family narratives. Room publishes original work by women, including trans persons, gender-variant and two-spirit women, and women of non-binary sexual orientations. Men not welcome.
Pays: $50 CAD for one page, $60 for two pages, $90 for three pages, $120 for four pages, $150 for five or more pages. 
Deadline: July 31, 2017. Submission guidelines here.


See Brian’s complete current schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Secrets of Writing a Page-turner, Saturday, Oct 28, in Caledon at the Bolton Library

Secrets of Writing a Page-turner
~ Techniques for making any story more compelling ~
Saturday, Oct 28, 2017
10:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Albion-Bolton Branch, Caledon Public Library, 150 Queen Street South, Bolton, Ontario (Map here.)

Ever stayed up all night reading a book? In this workshop, you’ll learn you how to build that kind of tension.  And we'll help you put into practice the techniques professionals use – on every page and in every kind of story – to create drama and tension.

Workshop leader Brian Henry has been a book editor and creative writing instructor for more than 25 years. He publishes Quick Brown Fox, Canada’s most popular blog for writers, teaches creative writing at Ryerson University and has led workshops everywhere from Boston to Buffalo and from Sarnia to Saint John. But his proudest boast is that he has helped many of his students get published.

Fee:  43.36 + 13% hst =49 + $6 for pizza lunch = $55 paid in advance by mail or in person 
or 46.90 + 13% hst = 53 + $6 for pizza lunch = $59 if you wait to pay at the door

To pay in advance, make your cheque out to the Caledon Public Library and mail it to:
Attention:  Laura Nolloth, Caledon Public Library, Albion Bolton Branch, 150 Queen Street South, Bolton, ON, L7E 1E3
Or you can pay in advance in person at any Caledon Library branch. (Branch locations here.)
To reserve a spot now, email: programs@caledon.library.on.ca


See Brian’s complete current schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

“My Mother, A Mouse and the Love of Reading” by Paul Daniel

I can’t remember a time when there wasn’t reading material in my home. Growing up, we had a subscription to The Toronto Star. My brother read the comics page of the newspaper; my mother, who was losing her eyesight, used a magnifying glass to read the front section; and my father, for whom English was a second language, made a game effort to read the sports page.

My experience with reading started with one solitary moment. I remember it as vividly. I must have been around five or six. My mother took me to the Mississauga Central Library at Dundas and Confederation Parkway. Don’t look for it now.  The old Central Library was torn down more than 20 years ago. But when my mother took me there, the library was brand spanking new.

She took me to the children’s section on the main floor and made what appeared to be a random selection of books. Only one stood out: Anatole by Eve Titus. Published in 1956, the story is about a mouse named Anatole who lives in France. Trying to get cheese for his family, he discovers that humans hate mice.  How can this be? he wonders. He is a proud French mouse, determined to find a way to earn his keep and to do so with honour.

Anatole eventually becomes the official cheese taster at the Duval cheese factory, grading the quality of its products. All the while, people are wondering who this “Anatole” is. I’ll leave it at that. I don’t want to spoil the story for you. It’s really good.

The words were clear and concise. The pictures, while not bursting with colour, were vivid. Perhaps it was the minimal use of colour that made such an impact on me and has stayed with me ever since.My mother never took a course in child psychology but she would have made a fine teacher. I think one reason she picked that book for me had to do with cheese. Like a lot of kids that age, I gobbled up cheese as if it were candy. She must have figured that a book that contained cheese would obviously have some attraction for me. Then again, maybe she was just lucky.

Years later, I found an online used bookstore that was selling a discarded original edition of Anatole. I paid probably more than ten times its original price. It was worth every penny.

I have never stopped reading. I have always said reading is one of the few things in life at which I excel. If I’m in a line up, I’ll be reading a book. If I’m at a coffee shop, I’m reading a book or a magazine. On my daily commute to work and back (which works out to four hours), my nose is scraping away at a book.

For many people, social media is entertaining. But I equate social media with eating too many loaves of white bread. It’ll fill you up but too much of it is bad for you.

In an age when thoughts are reduced to 140 characters and simplistic emoticons, I think of the great gift that my mother, indeed my entire family, gave me without realizing it. Enjoying the written word never goes out of style and it never gets boring. It only gets better.

Paul Daniel is an audio producer at Accessible Media Inc., (AMI) in Toronto, Ontario. Writing and reading have always been his second and third passions following his first passion, his wife, Mary. He’s enjoyed being in Brian’s creative writing class. “Brian’s class has reminded me the pleasures and challenges of writing,” says Paul. “There’s never a dull moment.” 


See Brian Henry’s schedule here, including writing workshops and creative writing courses in Algonquin Park, Bolton, Barrie, Brampton, Burlington, Caledon, Georgetown, Guelph, Hamilton, Ingersoll, Kingston, Kitchener, London, Midland, Mississauga, Oakville, Ottawa, Peterborough, St. Catharines, Saint John, NB, Sudbury, Thessalon, Toronto, Windsor, Woodstock, Halton, Kitchener-Waterloo, Muskoka, Peel, Simcoe, York Region, the GTA, Ontario and beyond.