Before submitting to these agents, go to the agency website and read everything on it. Look at the titles they have represented to see if your book would be a good fit. And, of course, read the agent's bio before submitting.
You can also google the name of the agent to see if there are any interviews posted. These can provide valuable information on what the agent likes to see in a book, as well as what they respond to in a query letter.
If you have any doubts about your query letter, go to Query Shark. Literary agent Janet Reid has provided invaluable critiques of query letters, which are instructive even to seasoned old hands.
Note: For a complete list of agents seeking clients see: Agents Seeking Clients.
Janklow & Nesbit Associates
Allison Hunter began her publishing career in 2005 working for the Los Angeles-based literary publicity firm Kim-from-L.A, and was an agent at InkWell Management and the Stuart Krichevsky Literary Agency before joining Janklow & Nesbit. Allison’s clients include bestselling novelists, memoirists, journalists and various experts in their field. She was also thrilled to work with InkWell client Lena Dunham on her bestselling memoir NOT THAT KIND OF GIRL.
How to submit: For fiction submissions, send an informative cover letter, a brief synopsis and the first ten pages. If you are sending an email submission, please include the sample pages in the body of the email below your query. For non-fiction submissions, send an informative cover letter and a full outline to email@example.com.
Handspun Literary Agency
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.
For nonfiction, Courtney represents work targeting all age groups (children and adults). Though she will consider nonfiction on any topic, work that deals primarily with issues of religion or spirituality is unlikely to be a good fit.
She is not currently accepting new middle-grade, early reader, or picture book submissions.
Please note that the agency does NOT represent original screenplays.
Submission guidelines: Queries should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
For fiction: please send a query letter, short synopsis (5 pages or less), and the first three chapters or 50 pages of the novel, whichever is more. For nonfiction: please send a query letter and proposal.
About Linda: Before moving to Emerald City Literary Agency, Linda worked at Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency for 4 1/2 years, where she represented titles like Bill Konigsberg’s award winning YA novels, Openly Straight, The Porcupine of Truth, and Honestly Ben; Joe McGee’s hilarious zombie picture book Peanut Butter and Brains, and Natasha Sinel’s well received The Fix.
What she is looking for: Linda represents picture books, middle grade and young adult fiction, and children’s nonfiction. She does not represent adult literature at all.
The McDermid Agency
About Chris: Chris Bucci is a literary agent, director, and full partner at The McDermid Agency. He represents bestselling authors such as Bob Rae, Timothy Caulfield, Susan Delacourt, Jowita Bydlowska, James Grainger, and Kerri Sakamoto. Most recently senior editor at McClelland & Stewart, he worked primarily with nonfiction, bringing to the M&S catalogue the likes of Alain de Botton, Christopher Hitchens, Paul Watson and Sir Martin Gilbert. He began his career at the University of Toronto Press and soon became an acquisitions editor in social sciences and cultural studies. Bucci joined HarperCollins Canada in 2003 as a nonfiction editor. Moving to M&S in 2004, Bucci helped revitalize the McClelland & Stewart nonfiction program, establishing relationships with international authors, agents and publishers.
Chris does not represent picture books, poetry, erotica, or inspirational fiction.
How to submit: Please email info [at] mcdermidagency.com with a query letter, which should include a brief description of yourself and your project. You are welcome to include the first 10-15 pages of your manuscript pasted into the body of the email. Please do not send any further material unless invited to do so.
Lisa Gallagher of DeFiore & Company Literary Management Inc.
About Lisa: Lisa Gallagher joined DeFiore & Company Literary Management Inc., as a literary agent in 2014, after working at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates for five years. She has more than twenty years of publishing experience and insight from both sides of the Atlantic, and now as an agent, being a champion of authors and their work continues to be her passion. Formerly SVP & Publisher, William Morrow (an imprint of HarperCollins), Gallagher published many New York Times bestselling novelists including Tom Franklin, Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill, Christopher Moore, Sena Jeter Naslund, Dennis Lehane, Laura Lippman, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, James Rollins, Marisa de los Santos and Neal Stephenson, as well as non-fiction blockbusters like Marley & Me and Freakonomics. Prior to joining William Morrow in 2000, Gallagher was Associate Publisher at Bloomsbury USA, following a move to New York from Bloomsbury’s London office in 1998. Gallagher was educated at St. Catharine’s College, Cambridge, UK.
How to submit: "Please submit your manuscript or proposal to email@example.com as a word document: double spaced, 12pt, Times New Roman. I will do my best to read and respond to you within six weeks of receiving your submission. Unfortunately, due to the volume of submissions received, I am unable to respond to every one personally, so if you haven’t heard from me at all by then, it means that I am unable to offer you representation. It is acceptable to make multiple submissions to different agencies – just let me know – and if you get an offer of representation from another agent before hearing back from me, I would be grateful if you could let me know by sending an email with the subject line “Offer received”. Thank you very much."
Annette Crossland of A for Authors, Ltd. (U.K.)
About Annette: In a career spanning more than 30 years, Annette has worked in high-profile positions in some of the UK and USA’s most successful publishing companies. She has worked with some of the top bestselling authors in the world, touring overseas with Elizabeth George, Dennis Lehane and Frances Fyfield, amongst others.
What she is looking for: "We are always on the lookout for exciting new work and we welcome submissions across all relevant genres by email."
How to submit: With your submission, please include your name, address, phone number, title of the material. All material should be emailed as Microsoft Word attachments. Downloadable material, e-books, or links to any such items are unacceptable. For fiction please send a synopsis and three sample chapters (50 pages or fewer) and for non-fiction send a letter outlining your intentions. No radio/theatre/TV scripts, poetry, SF/Horror genres, or short stories. Response time 12 weeks.