As of June 1, 2023:
I’m currently seeking submissions in the following genres: women’s contemporary or historical fiction; contemporary or historical single-title romance; adult real-world or secondary-world fantasy; adult science fiction.
Please note: I am no longer seeking anything for the young adult or middle grade markets.
In all categories/genres, I am looking for stories featuring:
- Underrepresented characters/diverse POVs, whether by gender, race, sexual orientation, etc.
- #ownvoices stories
- Found families
- Strong sibling relationships, especially sisters or large families
- Excellent world building
- Fish-out-of-water stories
- “New” settings, places that have not been overdone
- Strong writing/prose, distinctive voices, new twists on familiar tropes, and/or high concepts
- Strong hooks
- Smart characters who demonstrate blind spots/flaws/their humanity
Not for me:
- Sports romances, particularly team sports. (I could maybe go for a runner or a swimmer, maybe a figure skater, but that’s about it.)
- Epic fantasy of the Lord of the Rings variety (think dwarves, elves, orcs, etc.)
- Vampires, werewolves, shapeshifters, fae (at least for the foreseeable future).
- Big military/political stories a la Tom Clancy
- Anything with a prehistoric setting a la Clan of the Cave Bear
- Cowboy/rancher/American western-type stories. (Note: This is not geographically-based but character-based. I am happy to see other types of stories/characters set in the western states.)
- Nonfiction/poetry/picture books/YA or MG/mysteries
Specifically, I’d love to find any of the following (though not all shoehorned into ONE book, please):
- High-concept/breakout romance with a strong secondary narrative in addition to the HEA, especially rom-coms or something with a lighthearted thread. (Featuring diverse couples of all types.)
- Women’s fiction that features a long-time female friendship or close-knit sisters; would love a travel/road-trip novel, but no Thelma-and-Louise endings.
- A heroine looking at a slow/late career start/finding themselves in mid-30s to late-40s/reinventing themselves.
- Unconventional/self-made/entrepreneurial heroines.
- Fresh, creative re-imaginings of classics.
- Dual/multiple timelines.
- Magic or magical realism, especially non-Western.
- Near-future, grounded speculative SF/medical advancements/tech gone awry/climate related
- Historical fiction set between the early-nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries, especially that does not focus on WW2 directly.
- Historical fiction with a literary tie-in.
- Literary-leaning witch novel, women’s fiction/historical/fantasy, especially something set in modern-day Salem.
Favorite recent(-ish) reads:
- RED, WHITE, AND ROYAL BLUE by Casey McQuiston
- THANK YOU FOR LISTENING by Julia Whalen
- BOOK LOVERS by Emily Henry
- PRIDE, PREJUDICE AND OTHER FLAVORS by Sonali Dev
- SEA OF TRANQUILITY by Emily St. John Mandel
- MEMPHIS by Tara M. Stringfellow
- NINTH HOUSE by Leigh Bardugo
- THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY by Alix E. Harrow
- REPUTATION by Lex Croucher
- Themis Files series (SLEEPING GIANTS, WAKING GODS, and ONLY HUMAN) by Sylvain Neuvel
- WRITERS AND LOVERS by Lily King
- PIRANESI by Susanna Clarke
- ONE ITALIAN SUMMER by Rebecca Serle
All queries should go through my Query Manager submission portal. I look forward to reading your work.
14 thoughts on “Wish List”
Ugh…my latest hero is a perfect example of “dubious moral fiber”. Hasn’t gone to the CPs yet, so it probably won’t hit the query trenches until then. Patience is a virtue…
Great idea, posting your wish list… How to get just what you want? It might really be just as simple as asking. 🙂 Hope you find them & maybe you’ll start an agent trend (beyond #mswl, also a good idea).
I LOVE this, and heartily recommend that you tell all of your agent friends to do something similar. Ha! But, really, this is great. I thought of querying you with my science fiction novel, but after reading what you are really looking for I am going to put that on the back burner to pursue others who are looking specifically for that genre. Really, a great idea!
Ah, if only I’d had this for The Brede Chronicles. My readers have a love/hate relationship with Alekzander Brede…
Hi Nephele! I’m SO glad I found your site! Lots of great information here. My only regret is that the trickling raindrops across the text look like the spots I get in my eyes before a migraine and I feel like I’m getting one when I’m trying to read your posts. (So weird, I know… I just want to browse more but I’m afraid I need to look away!) Best Regards!
Turned the snow off! Certainly don’t want to give anyone migraine flashbacks. Thanks for letting me know. 😉
Thank you Nephele. This is extremely helpful. Wish all agents did the same. Blessings.
Your wish list here includes fantasy, but this is not one of the genres included for YA in your Query Manager. Is it okay to submit a YA fantasy (specifically for me it’s a science fantasy).
I’m only reviewing adult fantasy at the moment. Thanks for checking.
Comments are closed.