Agent Editor Update from Crested Butte Writer’s Conference

Nestled in the stunning West Elk mountains of Colorado, this small, intimate conference is held annually. A writer's contest is held in conjunction with the conference.

My pen flew on Friday, the first day of the Crested Butte Writer’s Conference, when a panel of editors and agents met with writers and readers to discuss the current market. The panel consisted of Ginger Clark, Literary Agent at Curtis Brown Ltd.; Joanna Stampfel-Volpe, Literary Agent with Nancy Coffey Literary & Media Representation; Christine Pride, Editor at Broadway Books (div. of Random House, Inc.) And Anne Bensson, Assistant Editor at Thomas Dunn Books.

If your novel is completed, polished and ready to market, here are details you may want to note in your query file.

GINGER CLARK represents sci fi, fantasy, paranormal romance, literary horror and YA and middle grade fiction. She described the current market, which she aptly called “challenging.” The industry is down-sizing, there are now fewer editors and tighter acquisition lists. Read widely in the genre in which you hope to become published or re-published. She noted how the YOUNG ADULT and MIDDLE GRADE market is heating up.

JOANNA STAMPFEL-VOLPE represents children’s books and adult fiction (speculative, romance, historical, paranormal, urban fantasy, literary, dark drama, horror, thriller and upmarket women’s fiction). She has written fiction. It wasn’t good, she says, but it helped her understand pitch nervousness. When writing a query letter to her, Joanna suggests that you avoid saying you’re the next up-and-coming Stephen King, for example, but it is helpful if you compare your work to published authors who write similar stories.

Tomorrow:  Christine Pride and Anne Bensson’s thoughts on the market, and how you can get published.  And as always, I welcome your thoughts, additions, comments. 

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