Author Archives: Chuck Sambuchino

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5 Negative Voices and How to Shush Them

1. “Did you just write that? That’s pretty terrible. Kind of the worst, actually. Wait, do you even have an MFA?” Variations of this sentence will snake through your brain and disturb your thoughts many times during the writing process. I’d like to say there is some algebraic equation to eviscerate this kind of...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Laura Mamelok of Susanna Lea Associates

She is seeking: Laura is primarily interested in literary fiction, high-end commercial fiction, women’s fiction, literary crime/thrillers, and young adult fiction with crossover appeal. On the nonfiction side, she is looking for narrative nonfiction, current affairs/journalism, memoir, and humor. She's drawn to international stories and settings, in both fiction and nonfiction. Above all, she...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Amanda O’Connor of Trident Media

She is seeking: Amanda is continuously building her client list in general-interest and upmarket nonfiction, spirituality and wellness, and literary fiction. She looks for the “wisdom factor” across genres and disciplines, especially authors who have an expertise they are eager to share with the world. Her favored subjects include (but are not limited to)...

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3 Common Author Platform Mistakes — Plus How to Fix Them

When you hear the word “platform,” do you feel dread or excitement? Do you see social media and blogs as forced self-promotion or as an opportunity for conversation with readers? It’s an important question these days. More and more, the theory of an author platform—the idea that an author should communicate directly with readers...

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“How to Craft Query Letters, Opening Pages, Synopses, and Nonfiction That Get Noticed” — July 13 Agent One-on-One Boot Camp with Kimberley Cameron Literary

When your submission materials arrive in an agent’s inbox, they land among hundreds of others. At that point, one of two things will happen. Either the agent will like the submission and request more materials, or they will reply with a rejection. Authors who get rejected tend to fall in one of two categories...

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How I Got My Literary Agent: David Bell

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, with this installment featuring David Bell, author of SOMEBODY I USED TO KNOW. These columns are great ways for you to learn how to find a literary agent. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while...

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How I Got My Literary Agent: Rebecca Phillips

“How I Got My Agent” is a recurring feature on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog, with this installment featuring Rebecca Phillips, author of FAKING PERFECT. These columns are great ways for you to learn how to find a literary agent. Some tales are of long roads and many setbacks, while others are of...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Danielle Burby of HSG Agency

She is seeking: young adult, mystery, women's fiction, and an occasional fantasy. She gravitates toward stories with a strong voice and particularly enjoys complex female characters, narratives that explore social issues, and coming-of-age stories. Genres that appeal to her include contemporary YA, medieval fantasy, historical fiction, cozy mysteries, and upmarket women’s fiction. She finds...

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Literary Agent Interview: Greg Aunapu of Salkind Literary

This is an interview with Greg Aunapu of the Salkind Literary Agency (part of Studio B). Before he became an agent, he was a freelance journalist for TIME magazine and many other major publications. He is the writer/co-author of three non-fiction book and once ran a successful book-editing service that allowed him to help...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Eric Smith of P.S. Literary

Eric is seeking: Eric is eagerly acquiring fiction and nonfiction projects. He's actively seeking out new, diverse voices in Young Adult (particularly sci-fi and fantasy), New Adult, and Literary and Commercial Fiction (again, loves sci-fi and fantasy, but also thrillers and mysteries). In terms of nonfiction, he's interested in Cookbooks, Pop Culture, Humor, essay...

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Writing for the Soul: 5 (Less Conventional) Tips

I’ve just published my second book in the Storm Siren trilogy (thank you, HarperCollins) – and I’ll be honest with you. There are days I absolutely love what I do (like SERIOUSLY adore it)…but there are also days (or even weeks) I don’t ever want to see my computer screen again. Like walk away....

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4 Questions Agents Ask Writers at Pitch Sessions

Over the years, as I’ve written both KidLit and adult fiction, I have participated in several agent pitches and critique sessions. I’ve read every article I could get my hands on discussing how to deliver your pitch, or how to gracefully listen to constructive criticism. But what continues to surprise me are the questions...

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Selling Your Children’s Book: How to Write and Pitch Novels & Picture Books for Kids — June 29 Boot Camp by the Agents at P.S. Literary (with a Critique for all Attendees)

Children’s books—young adult, middle grade, and picture books—have taken over the publishing industry (in a good way). Readers of all ages are devouring the books that used to only take up space in libraries, children’s bookshelves, or school classrooms. Now, children’s books are celebrated for their enchanting prose, their relatable characters, their beautiful illustrations,...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Moe Ferrara of BookEnds, LLC

She is seeking: Moe is interested in science fiction and fantasy for all age groups (no picture books). She loves a bit (or a lot!) of romance in her fiction, so the right contemporary or historical romance will spark her interest. She's LGBTQ friendly, so send her that male/male erotic romance in your back...

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10 Ways to Never Get Published

Getting your book published means that actual people will read it, and who wants that? Here are 10 bona fide ways to make sure your manuscript never sees the light of day. 1. Perfect your work. Revision is for amateurs; perfection is the goal. Your book can always be better than it is today!...

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Get to Know Literary Agent Jennifer Chen Tran, Who Just Moved to Fuse Literary

"I'm looking to acquire literary fiction, commercial fiction, women’s fiction, upmarket fiction, contemporary romance, mature Young Adult, New Adult, suspense/ thriller and select graphic novels (adult, YA or MG). As a second-generation Taiwanese-American, I am particularly interested in voices from underrepresented and marginalized communities, strong and conflicted female characters, war and post-war fiction, and...

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New Literary Agent Alert: Saba Sulaiman of Talcott Notch Literary

She is seeking: In adult fiction, she seeks upmarket literary and commercial fiction, romance (all subgenres except paranormal), character-driven psychological thrillers, cozy mysteries, and memoir. In young adult, she seeks all subgenres except paranormal, fantasy, and sci-fi. She’s particularly interested in contemporary realistic stories, fast-paced mysteries, or lush historicals. She also seeks middle grade...