Oregon Christian Writers is happy to introduce the wonderful agents joining us for the 2014 summer conference. Pay particular attention to types/genres agents are interested in representing and note:
Some agents will accept mini-proposals submitted through the manuscript submission program before the conference.
Some will review exclusively at the conference.
See the Manuscript Submission (hyperlink) link for general submission guidelines and information on how to submit mini-proposals must be postmarked by July 15.
Coaching Class: Children’s Novels: What Do Agents and Editors Want to See in Middle Grade and Young Adult Novels?
Sally Apokedak is an associate agent with the Leslie H. Stobbe Literary Agency. She’s been studying, reviewing, and marketing children’s books, as well as giving writing instruction for a dozen years. As the manager of the Kidz Book Buzz blog tour she was privileged to work with best-selling and award-winning authors such as Jeanne DuPrau, Ingrid Law, and Shannon Hale. She is presently the YA contributor to Novel Rocket and she teaches at general market and Christian writers’ conferences across the country.
She is interested in children’s books from picture books to young adult (Christian or general market), nonfiction for all ages (Christian or general market), and women’s novels (Christian market).
Sally is looking for:
Picture Books: I’m looking for quirky, fun, characters and delightful language, with lines that roll and rhymes that rock. Conflict and growth for characters always helps.
Middle Grade Books: I’d love some funny boy books. Boy scientists and boy geniuses are great. I love fantasies, but really want anything with a strong voice.
YA Books: Fantasy is my favorite, and if there’s romance I love it even more. I still like dystopian and fairy tales. I love mysteries.
Nonfiction for All Ages: I’m interested in devotional books, Christian living, science for young children, and biography. But you may try me on anything.
Adult Inspirational: I’m looking for adult books for the Christian market, particularly fantasy and romantic suspense.
Sally is not looking for:
Picture books unless they are from author/illustrators. No picture books that rhyme where all the rhyming words are one or two syllables. No issue books or preachy stories. No supernatural books with angels, demons, werewolves, ghosts, fairies, or zombies. Sally likes endings that are full of hope.
Sally will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Workshop: It’s Not Personal—Taking the Sting Out of Rejection
Sue Brower loves finding and developing authors who are great storytellers and talented writers. She is an editor and marketer who wants to partner with authors willing to work hard to grow in their craft.
Over the past 25 years in publishing, Sue has been responsible for marketing, editing, story development, and acquisitions for Zondervan, a division of Harper Collins Publishers. Most recently, she was Executive Editor and had the privilege of working with New York Times best-selling authors Karen Kingsbury, Tim LaHaye, Stephen Carter, and Terri Blackstock, and was named ACFW’s Editor of the Year in 2010. Sue is now an agent with the Natasha Kern Literary Agency and a freelance editorial consultant. She has been an avid fiction fan since childhood and loves the way stories are able to change lives, heal hearts, and bring joy to readers.
Sue is originally from Arizona and now lives in Michigan with her husband, Todd, and three furry “kids,” Shep, Ollie, and Pepper.
Sue is looking for:
Well-written romance (all sub-genres, including New Adult), suspense and thrillers (particularly with military and criminal attorney protagonists and heroes), cozy mysteries, women’s contemporary fiction, and historical.
Sue is not looking for:
Science fiction, fantasy, paranormal, horror, or issue-driven fiction. She is not interested in children’s books.
Sue will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Workshop: Are We There Yet? How to Know If Your Nonfiction Message Is Ready For an Agent, and What To Do If It’s Not
Alice Crider began her career in book publishing in 1998 at Cook Communications in Colorado Springs. In 2001, she went to work at Alive Communications Literary Agency for three years before joining the editorial team at WaterBrook Press, a division of Random House Publishing, Inc. She studied communication at Regis University in Colorado and received life coach training through Christian Coaching Institute in 2008. Alice joined the literary team at WordServe Literary in September 2012. Her passion is to empower authors to realize their publishing dreams and to facilitate creation of life-changing messages and stories.
Alice is looking for:
Nonfiction: memoir, health, personal growth, spiritual growth, relationships, family, money, popular culture, and women’s issues.
Fiction: Women’s, historical, suspense/thriller, legal, literary, mainstream, and romance.
Alice is not looking for:
Gift books, poetry, short stories, screenplays, graphic novels, children’s picture books, science fiction, or fantasy for any age.
Alice will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Workshop: PR Secrets of Best-Selling Authors
Workshop: The Process of Developing a Great Media Hook & Pitch
Teresa Evenson is a literary agent with the William K Jensen Literary Agency. However, she is also a publicist, publicity consultant, and founder of TEAM Services, an organization that Trains authors to recognize and develop the best media hook for their book; Equips them to present their message in concise, crisp sound-bite sentences; Assists authors to look as well as they speak; and connects them to the appropriate Media. Teresa has worked in the book publicity arena for 19 years. She was the Senior Publicist and Manager of Media Relations for more than 14 years at Harvest House Publishers and was recognized as one of the most experienced and talented publicists. Her responsibilities included overseeing the entire publicity campaign of print, radio, and broadcast interviews; selecting and creating the appropriate media angle and strategy for each author; writing the pitch tailored to individual programs; and booking the national in-studio radio and television interviews. She has booked authors on thousands of Christian and general national programs including Oprah, Regis & Kelley, Fox & Friends, O’Reilly Factor, The 700 Club, Focus on the Family, Family Life Today, Life Today with James Robison, Moody Broadcasting, LeSEA Broadcasting, Daystar, BET, ABC, INSP, TBN, and The David Letterman Show. She has worked with more than 500 authors and on major campaigns for Stormie Omartian, Kay Arthur, Dr. Tim LaHaye, Bruce Wilkerson, Debby Boone, Dr. Lloyd John Ogilvie, Lysa TerKerust, Bill & Pam Farrell, H. Norman Wright, and Jack Hanna.
Teresa is looking for:
Manuscripts that encourage, inspire, and build our faith; serious books that refute the progressive movement within the church; marriage & parenting books; memoirs; books targeting college-age and early 20s/30s.
Teresa will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Workshop: Changes in the World of Publishing—How to Survive and Thrive in This Constantly Changing Environment
Bill Jensen has worked in book publishing for more than 37 years. He has discovered and helped launch the publishing careers of numerous best-selling authors. He has acquired and worked with authors such as Stormie Omartian, Kay Arthur, Andy Stanley, Tony Evans, Lisa Whelchel, Lisa Samson, Jennifer Rothschild, Erwin Lutzer, Dr. James Dobson, Shaunti Feldhahn, Joni Eareckson Tada, and a host of others.
In 2005 Bill opened the William K Jensen Literary Agency. He represents New York Times best-selling authors Ann Voskamp, Melanie Shankle, and Fawn Weaver, as well as Lisa-Jo Baker, Mark Hitchcock, Christa Parrish, Allison Pittman, Sharon Jaynes, Sophie Hudson, and many more.
Bill is interested in most types of Christian books, including but not limited to: fiction, Christian living, devotional, marriage, family life, apologetics, biography/memoir, children’s, gift books, cookbooks, Bible prophecy, humor, health, inspirational, women’s issues, and men’s issues.
Bill will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Host: Agent Panel
Host: Panel: The Future of Publishing
Writing Center (Tuesday only)
Chip MacGregor is the president of MacGregor Literary, a full-service literary agency on the Oregon Coast. A former publisher with Time Warner, he has worked with authors as a literary agent for more than a dozen years, and was previously a senior editor at two publishing houses. An Oregon native, Chip lives in a small town on the Oregon coast. Chip is also the author of a couple dozen books and a popular teacher on the craft of writing and marketing.
Chip is currently looking for:
Fiction: both Christian and general market fiction, particularly in the romance and suspense categories.
Nonfiction: targeted Christian Living titles from authors with a demonstrated platform, as well as business, parenting, and lifestyle titles in the general market.
Chip will take author appointments at the conference (Tuesday only).
Workshop: Romancing Religion: Writing a Christian Romance
Mary Sue Seymour, nominated for American Christian Fiction Writers Agent of the Year, has been agenting for 21 years and is listed as a top deal-maker for inspirational fiction on Publisher’s Marketplace. She has sold multi-book deals to Thomas Nelson, Zondervan, Harvest House, Bethany House, Cook, Harper One, Abingdon Press, B&H, Guideposts, and others. She travels the country and world presenting writing workshops, mentoring writers, and doing appointments with them. She has been a guest agent at The Women’s Fiction Festival in Matera, Italy, has attended the London Book Fair, and has traveled to almost every major American city for writing conferences, and she loved every minute of it. To see current sales, conference pictures or recent covers of books she’s sold, please visit her website. Mary Sue and fellow agent, Nicole Riscinti, have written a book titled The Smart Guide to Getting Published, which will be released this year.
Mary Sue represents best-selling Christian authors such as New York Times best-selling author Shelley Shepard Gray, Mary Ellis, Vannetta Chapman, Ruth Reid, Don Reid of the Statler Brothers, and others. Her writers have won numerous publishing industry awards and have been the subject of articles and starred reviews in Publisher’s Weekly and other publications.
Mary Sue likes to keep busy since her sons, Matt and Luke, have grown up. She ran the Disney half- marathon this past January. She also teaches art on cruise ships in exchange for a complimentary cruise for two, which has made her exceedingly popular with her friends!
Mary Sue is looking for:
Inspirational romance—Amish, 1800s-set historical, and any inspirational historical set prior to 1800. Inspirational nonfiction and some Amish romance as well.
Mary Sue will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.
Workshop: Writing to Transform
David Van Diest believes that the best books are yet to be published. Since starting in publishing in 1988, David has worked directly with many leading Christian publishers, ministries, and best-selling authors, including Max Lucado, Karen Kingsbury, and Chuck Swindoll. He’s worn a variety of hats in the past 20+ years: marketing director, vice president of sales, and literary agent. While at Multnomah, David wrote the marketing plan for a little book called The Prayer of Jabez, which surprised everyone by selling more than 10 million copies. David’s passion is to help everyone understand the unsurpassing greatness of God’s love expressed through His Son Jesus’ free gift of grace and to help Christians mature in Him through continued growth. David operates the Van Diest Literary Agency with his wife, Sarah. They live outside of Portland.
David is looking for:
Mainly nonfiction that directs people to the only source of hope, healing, and restoration—Jesus. If a fiction work does that, he would consider that as well but it would need to be a creative (out-of-the-box) type of approach.
David will review through the Manuscript Submission Program.