Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 23, 2016

Illustrator Saturday – Katy Betz

katyKaty Betz grew up in Southern California where she learned how to sit patiently in freeway traffic, ride out earthquakes, surf cold waves, and paint awesome pictures.

Katy works with both traditional and digital media and is active in the fields of children’s literature, gallery and editorial illustration. She also is a Professor and Interim Co-Department Head of Illustration at Ringling College of Art & Design.

Her work focuses on visual narratives inspired by fantasy, philosophy, and nature. She imagines stories, worlds and characters to express ideas with the intention of making an emotional and intellectual connection with her audience.

When not working in the studio or classroom, you can find Katy playing outdoors in the Florida swamps or hiking the California Sierras with a sketchbook in hand.

Here is Katy discussing her process:

1.Sketchbook page

This is what a typical page in my sketchbook looks like. This was for a promotional postcard design themed “Dragons and Unicorns”.

2.Mind map

I find it really helpful to start with a mind map and describe what mood and feel I want a painting to have before I begin thumbnailing.

3.Inspiration Reference

Once I have some rough ideas down, I go on the hunt for reference and inspiration. I found this painting that really captures a lovely mood. I was inspired by the palette, details and sense of movement in the composition.

4.Digital value study

I scanned in the rough drawing from my sketchbook and did a digital value study in Photoshop to help me start visualizing the painting.

5.Digital color study

Next was a digital color study. I originally wanted to make this a saturated, high-contrast image. But as I continued to work on it, I felt it needed to be more muted to capture a medieval sensibility.

6.Pushed sketch

After doing the two studies, I sat back to analyze and didn’t quite like where it was going. Then it dawned on me that my original sketch was pretty static. Looking back at my inspiration reference image, I realized that I needed some diagonals in the composition. So I stopped and re-sketched the idea. I also played around with a slight shape variety for the characters.

7.Final linework

Now with a more dynamic composition, I felt ready to draw up a refined line drawing.

8.In progress 1

I printed the line drawing onto Bristol paper and mounted it on illustration board. I then laid down an gouache wash of burnt sienna + sap green to create a warm golden underpainting. Once that was dry, I started to block in back to front, dark to light.

9.In progress 2

I was still painting the colors a little too bright here, and had to layer over them to get the right level of saturation I was going for. I usually make a total of 4 passes over every painting – the initial block in, refining, refining, and then final details.

10.Triumvirate FINAL

The completed painting. I like to let the painting speak to me as I go, making adjustments as needed. And I also like to get critique because sometimes I can’t see what is needed. Once major adjustment was darkening the background behind the girl’s head to make sure she stood out as the focal point.

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How long have you been illustrating?

I’ve been freelancing for about 10 years (ever since I graduated from Laguna College of Art & Design in 2006.)

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Where do you live?

I live in Sarasota, Florida.

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What was the first thing you painted where someone paid you for your work?

Hmmm it’s hard to recall…I think it was a family member paying me to do a dog portrait when I was in high school.

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Did you go to school for art?

If so where and why did you pick that school? Yes I did. I went to Laguna College of Art & Design for my undergraduate degree, and Cal State Fullerton for my graduate degree. I chose Laguna because it was by the beach (for inspiration of course…) and had a great reputation and a small, nurturing environment. Cal State Fullerton also had a great reputation for it’s Illustration program and was close to home, and relatively affordable.

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What did you study there?

I majored in Illustration at both colleges.

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Do you feel College helped develop your style?

Definitely. Having the feedback and time to explore led me to where I’m at now. Traveling also helped me to find my visual voice. I went on several study-abroad programs that exposed me to new ways of thinking and processing the visual world.

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Did art school help you get work when you graduated?

Yes, I think so. It definitely gave me more confidence to approach clients.

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Have you seen your work change since you left school?

Oh yes! I feel like I’m always experimenting, which I find to be kind of frustrating but ultimately a good thing. My style changes when I use different media. During college I was painting in oil and had a tendency to render everything too tightly. So I jumped to pastel for a while, but ran into too many limitations. I finally feel like I’ve happily landed somewhere in the middle with acrylic gouache. I love it because It’s fast-drying, can be blended but also works great for flat design work. The colors are vivid and reproduce well. I can use it for both light-to-dark or dark-to-light methods. It makes painting fun!

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When did you decide you wanted to illustrate for children?

After graduating from Laguna College of Art & Design. I originally wanted to be a gallery painter, and the work I was creating for shows was very whimsical and narrative. Several people suggested I should illustrate children’s books, which I thought was a great idea since I love to read, so I went back to grad school to study how to do that and tailor my portfolio.

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What was your first book you illustrated?

The Lost Ones: Ghosts of Paris, by Christie Franke. It is a middle grade novel published by Zittaw Press.

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How did you get that contract?

Through the network at Laguna College.

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Did you do other types of illustrating before you got that book contract?

Yes, I did magazine covers for a local company, a few murals, a few logo deisgns, and apprenticed as a stained-glass mosaicist.

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How did you get the position of Professor and Interim Co-Department Head of Illustration at Ringling College of Art & Design?

When I graduated from Cal State Fullerton, there was a visiting full-time position open at Ringling. My grad professors encouraged me to apply, so I did, and lo and behold I got the job! I moved to Florida and have been teaching a variety of courses for the Illustration Department since 2011. About a year and a half ago, the college was undergoing some transitions and experiencing growth, and as a result I was asked to step up as interim co-head while new changes got sorted out. We just hired a new department head, so I will be back to full-time teaching in the Fall.

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Can you tell us about the college? Does it have any connection to the circus or the museum in Sarasota?

Ringling is an incredible college! Students are mega-talented, the creative energy is on full blast all the time, and everyone is passionate about what they do which makes it a really rewarding place to be. John Ringling, founder of the circus, also founded the art college in 1931. There are about 1,300 students and 13 majors all in the visual arts (Illustration being the largest major). There are no performing arts, and it’s not affiliated with the circus in any way nowadays.

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How many picture books have you illustrated?

I’ve illustrated 10 books so far.

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Do you have any desire to write and illustrate your own book?

Yes, I have several ideas that have been brewing in my head for a while. I would really like to write chapter books and illustrate the cover and interiors. I find myself drawn to the middle grade genre because of the adventure and mystery.

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How did you get to the do the cover for Just A Drop of Water?

I met the author, Kerry O’Malley Cerra, at the Miami SCBWI conference a few years ago and we became fast friends. Kerry liked my work and mentioned it to her editor at Sky Pony, who also like my work and assigned me the project! I have had several opportunities come from my author friends, such as Nicole Lataif (author of I Forgive You) and Jodi Kendall (author of Some Pig in the City). I met each of them at SCBWI conferences and have stayed in touch over the years, and they have been gracious to recommend me to their editors!

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What do you think is your biggest success?

Probably just the fact that I’ve been able to work in the arts and continually make artwork and live a creative lifestyle.

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Have you ever tried to do a wordless picture book?

No I haven’t but I think it would be a really fun challenge.

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I see you are represented by Christy Ewers at CATugeau. How did the two of you connect and when was that?

Yes, Christy and Chris are both amazing!! I had the good fortune of meeting Chris at a special SCBWI event in Florida over a year ago, where she gave a presentation about her agency and what to put in a portfolio. She connected with my work and shared it with her daughter, Christy, who also connected with it and they decided to offer representation.

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Do you illustrate full time?

No, I teach full-time and illustrate part-time.

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Do you have a favorite medium you use?

Yes, gouache! I love it. I use acrylic gouache for illustration projects because I don’t have to worry about it accidently reactivating while on a deadline. However, I like to use regular gouache for plein-air painting for the simple fact that it does reactivate and I can experiment and re-use the palette later.

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Do you take research pictures before you start a project?

Yes and no. At the very beginning, I like to just sketch without looking at anything. Then once I have an idea, I’ll ask friends to model for me and try to find objects from life if possible. I also do a lot of online research. Sometimes I get ideas for characters by going through my friends list on Facebook!

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Have you worked with any educational publishers?

If yes, are there any differences working with them? Yes, I’ve done a few educational picture book projects. They main difference I’ve noticed is that the book is already laid out with lots of illustrator notes and the deadlines are usually much tighter.

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Do you use Photoshop with any of your work?

Yes, I use it to refine my sketches, create value and color studies, and do final color/value corrections on the final digital file. Depending on the assignment, I sometimes work entirely digital, sometimes “tradigital”, and other times entirely traditional. I recently made it a goal to paint the entire project traditionally if possible so that I have finished work to put in gallery shows.

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Do you have and use a graphic tablet?

I do, I have a Wacom 22HD Cintiq and also a Wacom Intuos 5 tablet. I find both really helpful and easy to use. I work on the Cintiq when I’m at home, and if I go out to a coffee shop or traveling, I take the tablet with me.

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Has any of your work appeared in magazines?

I have illustrated for a few magazines – Spider, Cobblestone, and Highlights.

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Do you have a studio in your house or do you do everything at the college?

Yes, I have a studio in my house where I do all my freelance work and an office on campus where I do all my grading.

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Is there anything in your studio you couldn’t live without?

Hmmm, let’s see. My cat Dinah, who keeps me company. My twinkle lights and inspiration wall covered in favorite quotes and pictures, and a window with good lighting and a view.

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Do you follow any type of routine to attain your career goals?

Yes, I would say a big component for helping me stay focused (in terms of career and life overall) is daily prayer and journaling. I also regularly attend SCBWI conferences and events to meet people and keep an eye out for opportunities.

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Any exciting projects on the horizon?

Yes, I just finished illustrating a picture book and right now I have a few weeks to create a few personal pieces, which I find to be really important in maintaining creativity.

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Do you think the Internet has opened any doors for you?

Yes, I’ve been able to get a lot of assignments through people finding me on the web.

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What are your career goals?

I’d like to continue building my client list and get into illustrating more middle grade covers.

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What are you working on now?

I am finishing up a painting I started a while ago for a book idea called “June Gloom”.

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Are there any painting tips (materials, paper, etc.) you can share that work well for you?

Technique tips? Hmmm, I’ve found that I can easily print my line/value drawing directly onto bristol paper and then mount it to illustration board and work directly with gouache on top. It’s made my process a lot smoother and quicker. I find that the Masterson’s sta-wet palette is a must when it comes to keeping acrylic gouache fresh for a few days. I recently made a magnetic wall (using galvanized metal roofing sheets) which allows me to hang process work and see how a project is unfolding more easily that using a cork board.

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Any words of wisdom you can share with the illustrators who are trying to develop their career?

From my experience…It pays to show up! Attend as many events and meet as many people as you can. Schedule time for practice and experimentation.

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Thank you Katy for sharing your talent, process, journey, and expertise with us. Please make sure you keep in touch and share your future successes with us. To see more of Katy’s work, you can visit her at website at: http://www.Katybetz.com

If you have a minute, please leave a comment for Katy. I am sure she’d love it and I enjoy reading them, too. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 22, 2016

July Featured Agent – Natalie Lakosil – Interview Part 2

Natalie Lakosil, Agent

Natalie Fischer LakosilNatalie is an agent at the Bradford Literary Agency. An honors graduate of the University of San Diego, California, Natalie holds a B.A. in Literature/Writing. After nearly four years at the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency and a brief dabble in writing author profiles and book reviews for the San Diego Union Tribune, Natalie joined the Bradford Agency in February of 2011.

Natalie is drawn to talented, hard-working new authors with a fresh, unique voice and hook. Her specialties are children’s literature (from picture book through teen and New Adult), romance (contemporary and historical), cozy mystery/crime, upmarket women’s/general fiction and select children’s nonfiction. Her interests include historical, multi-cultural, magical realism, sci-fi/fantasy, gritty, thrilling and darker contemporary novels, middle grade with heart, and short, quirky or character-driven picture books. She is always drawn to an open and positive attitude in an author, professionalism, good grammar, and fantastical, beautifully written, engaging and sexy plots.

Below is Natalie Lakosil’s Interview – Part Two
What is your typical response time to email/phone calls with your clients?

Within a day! Excluding weekends, of course.


How do you like to communicate (email vs. phone)? And how often do you communicate during the submission process?


Email is my preferred method; during submission, I communicate as often as I have news. I tell my clients they’re always welcome to check in, but I send news as I have it.

What happens if you don’t sell this book?

We turn to the next one!


How many editors do you go to before giving up?


I don’t think I ever give up. I may strategically decide to hold on sending out a project further, and turn to a new project – but I have totally pulled things out of my back pocket that the timing was better for and/or I met with/spoke with the perfect editor for it and sold it later. So there’s no magic number here.


How long is your average client relationship?


LIFE. Ha; I’ve been an agent for six years now so I couldn’t say any longer than that, but when I sign a client it’s with the intention of it being a lasting relationship.


Do you handle your own foreign/film rights contracts or does your firm have someone else who handles those contracts?


We have a foreign rights agent, film agents we work with, and I handle audio.


Are you open to authors who work in multiple genres?

 
Yes – as long as they understand the groundwork and stamina needed in all genres!

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES For FIRST PAGE CRITIQUES:

In the subject line, please write “July First Page Critique” and paste the text in the email, plus attached it as a Word document to the email. Please make sure you include your name, the title of the piece, and whether it’s a picture book, middle grade, or young adult, etc. at the top on both the email and the Word document (Make sure you include your name with the title of your book, when you save the first page).

Your First Page Word document should be formatted using one inch margins and 12 point New Times Roman font – double space – no more than 23 lines – only one page. Send to: kathy(dot)temean(at)gmail(dot)com.

PLEASE FOLLOW THE GUIDELINES: Your submission will be skipped over if you do not follow the directions for both the pasted email and the attached Word doc. This is where most people mess up.

DEADLINE: July 21st.

RESULTS: July 29th.

Please only submit one first page a month. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 21, 2016

Industry Changes: New Imprint – New Positions

Random House CB

NEW IMPRINT at RANDOM HOUSE:

Author and artist Christopher Myers will launch a new imprint, Make Me A World, with Random House Children’s Books in 2018, overseen by Knopf Young Readers publisher Jenny Brown. The imprint and name “reflects Myers’s vision: to publish a selection of books that open up new worlds, possibilities, and pathways for young readers of all ages”, and will launch with Child of the Universe by astronomer Ray Jayawardhana; the picture book Mama Mable’s All-Gal Big Band Jazz Extravaganza! by Annie Sieg; and the inspirational memoir Walk Toward the Rising Sun by Ger Duan.

Myers said in the announcement: “Every day in the newspapers we see how much stories matter, the stories we tell each other and ourselves, and for too long many stories have been neglected, many storytellers ignored. Each of these untold stories represents a world that has been erased.
My father [Walter Dean Myers] built worlds for countless children in his stories. He wanted to make sure no child felt erased as he had, growing up poor and Black in Harlem in the 1940s, where brown, bright faces like his own were nowhere to be found in the pages of books. MAKE ME A WORLD will continue that work, recognizing storytellers from all walks of life that can build for contemporary children a sense that they too have the ability in their creative hands, in their hearts, to build their own worlds.”

EDITORS AND AGENTS:

Rachel Poloski has joined Random House Children’s as editor. Previously she was an associate editor for Disney Publishing’s Marvel Press.

Alexis Kirschbaum will move to Bloomsbury UK on September 13 as publishing director, reporting to Alexandra Pringle. She is currently editorial director at Penguin Press UK.

At Harlequin UK, Lucy Gough has been promoted to assistant managing editor.

At Dutton, Jessica Renheim has just been promoted to editor.

Andrea Cascardi will rejoin Transatlantic Agency as a literary agent based out of New York. Previously she was managing director of Egmont USA from 2013 to 2015, and before then spent ten years as an agent at TLA.

Michael Strother has joined Harlequin Teen as editor. Previously he was an editor at Simon Pulse.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

 

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 20, 2016

Book Giveaway – HILDIE BITTERPICKLES NEEDS HER SLEEP

Author of THE CASE OF THE MISSING CARROT CAKE:A Wilcox and Griswold Mystery, Robin Newman has agreed to do a book giveaway for her second book, HILDIE BITTERPICKLES NEEDS HER SLEEP that came out earlier this year.

All you have to do to get in the running is to leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know the other things you did to share the good news, so I can put in the right amount of tickets in my basket for you. Please make sure you check back on August 10th to discover the winner. Make sure I’m able to find your contact information, in case your name is drawn.

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Hildie Bitterpickles is a witch who needs her sleep. Her quiet neighborhood has been turned upside down with the sudden arrival of the old woman in her shoe, big bad wolf, and other fairy tale characters. What will Hildie have to do to get a quiet night’s sleep?

The Daily Witch Interviews Hildie Bitterpickles

Rocky Raccoon, reporter for the The Daily Witch, caught up with Hildie Bitterpickles this morning at The Magic Potion for a fiery cup of dragon breath, some crunchy bat fritters, and the latest witch news.  

RR: Thanks so much for flying over to meet with me.

HB: Any time Rocky.

RR: I’ll get straight to it. We’ve heard through the worldwide spider web that you’ve been having some problems with your neighbors.

HB: It’s true. My cat, Clawdia, and I go to bed at 7:00 pm sharp. That’s not 7:01 pm or 7:02 pm, but 7:00 pm exactly. The neighbors have made it very difficult for us to get to sleep.

RR: Well, what have they done?

HB: First, there’s this rude giant with a beanstalk elevator that goes CLANGITY CLANK CLUNK all night long. Then, there’s this crazy old lady who lives in a shoe with a GAZILLION children. Why would anyone live in a shoe with a GAZILLION children? But do you know what these children keep doing? They play baseball—ALL NIGHT LONG.

RR: That’s it?

HB: Of course not. Do you see my house over there?

RR: Is it the one without a roof?

HB: And do you know why it doesn’t have a roof?

RR: I have a feeling you’re going to tell me.

HB: Some pig just moved into a new brick house.

RR: That doesn’t sound so bad.

HB: But this pig didn’t come alone. He came with a wolf. Guess what this wolf did?

RR: Did he HUFF and PUFF?

HB: He HUFFED and PUFFED and blew the roof off of my house!

RR: That sounds terrible. What awful neighbors!

HB: Look at my poor Clawdia. She’s been turned into a fur ball of nerves.

RR: So what are you going to do about it?

HB: I’m moving. Good riddance neighbors. And I contacted this incredible picture book writer, Robin Newman, to tell my story. She’s got a thing for witches. I also enlisted the help of this awesome illustrator, Chris Ewald, to do the drawings. All the witches I know have been raving about his work. They said his sketches will take off 100 plus years. He doesn’t even include the warts. Can you believe that?

RR: So, when will this picture book be ready?

HB: It’s already done. Robin and Chris finished the book while we were chatting. Aren’t they the best? Love them!

Hildie Bitterpickles Needs Her Sleep (awesome title, right?) is available on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and at your local indie.

HB: Hey, can I ask you a question?

RR: Sure.

HB: Aren’t you a reporter for The Daily Boc?

RR: I work both beats. Have been covering this story for The Daily Boc about a poached egg named, Penny. Captain Griswold and Detective Wilcox are close to cracking the case.

HB: And have you been over to Kathy Temean’s blog?

RR: Of course! Kathy has one of the best blogs for children’s writers and illustrators out there. And she works on web design too! Have you seen the website she designed for Robin? Check it out: http://www.robinnewmanbooks.com

HB: I bet Kathy might like these bat fritters. Why don’t we bring her some?

RR: Brilliant!

HB: Want a broom ride?

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ROBIN’S BIO:

Robin Newman was a practicing attorney and legal editor, but she now prefers to write about witches, mice, pigs, and peacocks. She is the author of The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake, A Wilcox & Griswold Mystery, illustrated by Deborah Zemke (Creston Books 2015); The Case of the Poached Egg, illustrated by Deborah Zemke (Creston Books Spring 2017); and No Peacocks! illustrated by Chris Ewald (Sky Pony Press Fall 2017). She lives in New York, among many noisy neighbors, and spends many weekends strangely obsessing about witch weathervanes.

Find Robin at:
Website: http://www.robinnewmanbooks.com
Twitter: @robinnewmanbook
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/RobinNewmanBooks/339179099505049

And be sure to check out the Hildie Bitterpickles Needs Her Sleep book trailer!

Robin, thank you for sharing your success with us. Looking forward to THE CASE OF THE POACHED EGG: A Wilcox and Griswold Mystery coming out next year.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 19, 2016

Entangled Editors Wish List

entangled_red_websiteJuly 2016 Editor and Imprint Wish List:

The editors at Entangled Publishing are always looking for the next breakout hit. Here is their wishlist for the month of July, not only individual editors, but also what the imprints would love to see.

Imprints

  • Entangled Select and Entangled Teen – 70k-120k word romance novels or novels with romantic elements.
  • Embrace – New Adult romance novels or novels with romantic elements.
  • Indulgence – 45k-60k contemporary category romance.
  • Lovestruck – 20k-60k contemporary category romance.
  • Brazen – 20k-60k erotic category romance.
  • Bliss – 20k-60k sweet category romance.
  • Covet – 20k-70k paranormal category romance.
  • Scandalous – 20k-65k historical category romance.
  • Ignite – 25k-80k romantic suspense, mysteries, and thrillers.
  • Teen Crush – 20k-60k contemporary YA category romance.
  • Teen Crave – 20k-60k paranormal/scifi/fantasy YA category romance.

We accept both agented and unagented submissions.

Alethea Spiridon, Editorial Director of Scandalous and Select Historical

Scandalous (historical category romance):
• I really want well-developed Highlander and Viking stories right now. But also a story that has epic chemistry that flies off the page. Bring me the passion and obstacle-ridden romance that makes readers refuse to put the story down until they sort out how these two will make their love story work for them. Regency and Victorian time periods are also of particular interest.

Select Historical (single-title historical romance):
• Incredibly rich, evocative period pieces, something that takes risks. High concept, hero driven stories are what I want at the moment. Swoonworthy alpha hero who is driven by his goals and motivated to succeed in getting what he wants and the woman he loves. We’re particularly interested in Highlander, Viking, Regency, and Victorian stories.

Personal wish list:
• I’d love a great blackmail and revenge story for Indulgence, Scandalous, or our single-title historical list.
• A swarthy, sexy, brooding alpha male. I’m in alpha male withdrawal and craving him. I’ll consider any alpha as long as he is going to make me forget my life and take me away with him.
• I’m happy to review all kinds of historical stories if authors are looking for a new home for their ideas.

Alicia Tornetta, Editorial Director of Bliss, Suspense, and Ignite

Bliss (our sweet contemporary category romance imprint):
• Books with series potential featuring men in uniform (firefighters, police, military, etc). E.g.. Brothers all in various branches of the military who come home and fall in love.
• Babies! Single dads, baby on the doorstep. E.g. Two people become primary caregivers to a baby who isn’t theirs. Or a bachelor suddenly finds himself a dad and falling for the girl next door.
• Holiday romances. Snowball fights, snowed in, decorating the tree, family dinner—lots of potential with this setting. E.g. Heroine is stranded at the airport due to weather and plays fake girlfriend for the hero going home for the holidays.
• Weddings! Bridesmaids, wedding planners, marriages of convenience, etc. Anything where a story revolves around a wedding. E.g. The maid of honor falls for the bad boy best man at their best friends’ wedding.
• Small town romantic comedies! City girl in the country unexpectedly and at odds with a local guy, neighbors at war. Anything that has a humorous voice and a plot with lots of potential for laughs.

Suspense and Ignite (single-title and category-length suspense):
• Books with military/special forces/security heroes. E.g. A playboy hero who falls for his teammate’s sister while protecting her.
• Foreign settings. London, Brazil, Syria, Colombia etc.
• Undercover situations. E.g. An FBI hero who falls for his mark while undercover. Two agents who pose as a couple while undercover and fall for each other.
• A hero or heroine who falls for his/her partner. LGBT a plus! E.g. A CIA or FBI hero must work with a bad boy partner to stop a terrorist plot.
• No: Women in jeopardy from husband/ex/stalker.

Brenda Chin, Editorial Director of Brazen and Scorched

Brazen (sexy contemporary category romance):
• Authors with youthful, fresh voices who find unique spins on tried and true tropes.
• Stories that feature realistic love scenes, not only the rough type inspired by Christian Grey.

Scorched (erotic romance):
• Full length erotic romances (50,000 +)
• True to life heroines who find sensuality in the ordinary world (not sex clubs, sex toy shops, etc.).
• New Adult erotic romances (first person point of view, present tense).

Candace Havens, Editorial Director of Indulgence and Embrace

Indulgence (contemporary category romance with larger than life heroes):
• Looking for great stories with powerful, drool-worthy, alpha males and the sassy women who don’t mind taking them on. We want conflict-driven romances full of emotion. Sweep us off our feet and keep the stakes high. We’d like to see something with surgeons/brotherhood, a wealthy cowboy, and CEOs and power players are always welcome. No Sheiks, royalty, or suspense stories.

Embrace (single-title new adult romance):
• Looking for emotional, high-stakes stories with characters and love stories we can’t forget. We’re interested in characters experiencing first jobs, grad school, med-school, finding that first place to live, and the sexy neighbor next door.

Heather Howland, Editorial Director of Lovestruck

Lovestruck (humorous contemporary category romance):
• Send me fun, comedy of errors-style romances written in a fresh, engaging voice. I’m loving Sarah Ballance’s Lovestrucks right now. Smart humor, fun turns of phrase, and ridiculous situations we can all picture ourselves in. Combine that with a hot, everyday hero, a swoonworthy romance, and yummy sexual tension, and I’ll be hooked.
• I’d like to see a romance set around a sports team. Not superstars, necessarily, but hardworking athletes that come alive in their element…and when they’re with the heroine. Think of all the hilarious ways the couples could meet, and how steamy things will get as they try to deny they’re falling in love. Hockey and football are of particular interest. Will consider baseball.
• I’d also like to see a military, cop, or firefighter series with a lighthearted bent. Think of Marine for Hire and Wife for Hire by Tawna Fenkse. The series revolved around a military family, and I would love something similar.

Personal wish list:
• Lovestrucks! See above 
• Super high-concept YA with strong romantic elements and a killer voice. I’d really like a teen thriller, a badass hero like Four or Jason Bourne paired with a smart, resourceful heroine, and/or relatable sci-fi. I only have room on my print list for unicorns, so bring it!
• High-concept single-title romance with an addictive voice. Again with the badass heroes and smart, resourceful heroes. I already have strong military romantic suspense and romantic comedy authors on my list, so be different. I’d love to see an everyday hero with badass skills that come out of nowhere. Maybe he’s hiding who he is, is found, and the heroine is standing right there with a bag of groceries when he lets his assassin skills fly. Fun, tense, and sexy.

Heidi Shoham, Editorial Director of Select Contemporary

Select Contemporary (single-title contemporary romance)
• I want powerful, emotional, hero-centric stories told with a strong voice. I’m looking for likable heroines and strong, sexy, broody, alpha heroes, authentic characters handling complicated situations, loads of emotional depth, and real conflict.

Stacy Abrams, Executive Editorial Director of Teen, Crush, and Crave

Teen (single-title romantic fiction for teens):
• Psychological thrillers/mysteries with a unique, commercial approach and fast-paced writing. Bonus if it is written in multiple POVs.
• High-concept contemporary romance with strong romantic tropes like enemies to lovers or best friends to lovers.
• Extremely commercial historical fiction with a strong centralized hook.

Crush (contemporary teen category romance):
• Stories set in a regular, modern-day high school. No boarding schools!
• A fun, unique take on the “virgin” trope. Think American Pie!
• Valentine’s Day stories. Could work nicely with the bet trope, friends-to-lovers trope, or ugly duckling trope.

Crave (contemporary-set teen category romance with a paranormal or scifi element):
• Stories set in a regular, modern-day high school, but with a science-fiction or paranormal element added in.
• Fairy-tale retellings. Could take a darker look, or a modern, light approach.
• Would love to see a teen take on the “monster movie,” like Cloverfield, written from multiple POVs.

Tera Cuskaden, Editorial Director of Select Otherworld

Select Otherworld (single-title paranormal and scifi romance):
• I’m looking for paranormal romance with alpha males and strong heroines with great romantic tension.
• I’m looking for fresh voices and amazing stories that will suck me into the world and keep me up past my bedtime reading.
• I’m open to all genres and themes, though I am specifically looking for shifters (wolves, big cats, bears, dragons in particular), vampires, and science fiction/fantasy with crossover elements, such as shifters and/or vampires.
• I’d love to see large paranormal worlds with many different paranormal elements, such as vampires, shifters, witches, angels and demons, etc., and I would love to see sci-fi stories in the style of 12 Monkeys and Star Wars.

Jenn Mishler, Senior Editor

• Sweet romances that feature friends to lovers, opposites attract, and fish out of water. Also looking for stories that have military aspects and even cowboys. For teen I’m looking for female characters that are scouts, spymasters, and tacticians. I also want to see more books for our TEEN Crave line.

Lydia Sharp, Editor

• I’d love to see more contemporary YA! For the Teen line, I’m looking for high concept stories with equal parts romance and drama (family issues, social issues, mental illness, grief, etc) and some kind of travel or adventure involved, either to another country or a road trip across the U.S., whatever you can think up.
• For the Crush line, I’m looking for strong contemporary romance within high school walls, something that utilizes common tropes but also gives us a fresh spin on how the story plays out or an unexpected twist on a character archetype. Please read the guidelines for Crush thoroughly before submitting!

Suzanne Evans, Associate Editor

• Teen paranormal set in high school.
• Adult fantasy and paranormal with lovable characters and deep worldbuilding.
• Historical (especially with hot Vikings)

Wendy Chen, Editor

• Wendy Chen is looking for contemporary romances for Bliss, Indulgence, and Lovestruck. I love small towns, alpha heroes and also guy-next-door hotties. Put them in an exotic setting, throw in some blackmail, a surprise baby, a case of mistaken identity, and I’ll be hooked!

Hope you found this helpful.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 18, 2016

Buzz Books – Romance

armopigOnBeach500
The above beach illustration was created by Nancy Armo. Nancy lives and works in Seattle, Washington and enjoys creating characters that have a sense of humor. She works in watercolor, colored pencil, and pen and ink – mixed together with a little bit of digital polish. She was featured on Illustrator Saturday.

Romance provides great beach reading and Buzz Book provides a great way to find the perfect book for you and it’s free.

buzz books romance

Buzz Books: Romance sampler: A substantial pre-publication excerpts from 20 forthcoming romance titles. Enjoy access to the best romance voices the publishing industry is broadcasting for the upcoming season as you discover new series, catch up with the latest installments from beloved series, and find great standalone titles from top romance authors. Amazon.

Jackie Ashenden, WRONG FOR ME (Kensington Books)
Mary Balogh, SOMEONE TO LOVE (Signet)
Sarina Bowen, ROOKIE MOVE (Berkley Sensation)
Catherine Bybee, NOT QUITE PERFECT (Montlake Romance)
Kristy Cambron, THE ILLUSIONIST’S APPRENTICE (Thomas Nelson)
Colleen Coble, TWILIGHT AT BLUEBERRY BARRENS (Thomas Nelson)
Janet Dailey, SUNRISE CANYON (Zebra Books)
Tawna Fenske, NOW THAT IT’S YOU (Montlake Romance)
Kristan Higgins, ON SECOND THOUGHT (HQN)
Julia London, WILD WICKED SCOT (HQN)
Lindsay McKenna, WIND RIVER WRANGLER (Zebra Books)
Sarah Morgan, SUNSET IN CENTRAL PARK (HQN)
Sharon Page, THE WORTHINGTON WIFE (HQN)
Mary Jo Putney, ONCE A SOLDIER (Zebra Books)
Katherine Reay, A PORTRAIT OF EMILY PRICE (Thomas Nelson)
Abbie Roads, RACE THE DARKNESS (Sourcebooks Casablanca)
Jill Shalvis, THE TROUBLE WITH MISTLETOE (Avon)
Tiffany Snow, FOLLOW ME (Montlake Romance)
Lori Wilde, A WEDDING FOR CHRISTMAS (Avon)
Maisey Yates, LAST CHANCE REBEL (HQN)

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 17, 2016

Take A Look Sunday – Sue Maib

organisationcropped

2016 marks the 30th Anniversary of The Organisation!

Cue the popping of champagne corks and hurrahs!

They have agreed to host Take A Look Sunday from June through August!

organisation

ILLUSTRATOR’S DO NOT MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY!

The Organisation is run by Lorraine Owen with the fabulous assistance of Richard Merritt, Pauline Mason, Jane Gelosa and Steph Vickery. They are an international agency with offices in London and New York and their client base covers every genre and age group within Book Publishing. In addition they supply artwork for use in Advertising, Magazines, Design, Packaging, Apps, Games, Greetings Cards and Art for Interiors.

The company is built on the ethos that every artist should have a distinct style. They would be able to stand out and would never feel that their unique style was being duplicated within the agency. Currently the maximum amount of artists they represent is 60 and they operate a policy of adding new talent only when someone leaves.

“Lorraine and her agency are pretty much publishing royalty; The Organisation work with some of the very, very best illustration talents, and it’s always a thrill to be working with one of their stable They are on our ‘go-to’ list for all new commissions.

Organisation agents without fail are a joy to deal with, and contribute so much more than simple deal-making.” STRAWBERRIE DONNELLY, ART DIRECTOR

Here is Lorraine’s review for Sue Maib:

sue-maib1

Many thanks for your submission. I think you have a real sense of fun in your work, it’s lively and colourful and I like all the elements you’ve added to give the scenes a sense of place. So I can definitely see the imagination is there!

 

sue-maib2

However, what is currently letting you down is the drawing skills. I would say this would need to improve greatly, so keep sketching and practising, as the more you do, the more comfortable you will become and the drawing will become stronger.

sue-maib3

Having viewed your web site, I think the ‘doodles’ section shows your work best – here you have added little details and the images are much better realized. If I compare the image of the florist shop to the houses you’ve drawn in your samples, there is a big difference.

flueriste

I get a sense of the kind of building it is and where it might be, with the lovely shutters, shop awning etc, but the houses in your samples a very generic and simplistic. I think the overall feel I get is that these images are a little too basic at the moment and more attention needs to go into how your construct all the elements of scenery and characters.


Here’s a Little Bit About Sue Tincher Maib:

Sue Tincher Maib is an illustrator living in northwest Arkansas. For nearly 20 years, she worked as a multimedia designer. Sue recently left the corporate world to devote herself to her dream of writing and illustrating children’s books.
Website http://www.suetinchermaib.com


Lorraine. Thanks for taking the time to share your expertise with all of us.


 

A Little Bit about LORRAINE OWEN:

Prior to the birth of The Organisation I had been Art Director/designer for a number of major publishers designing book jackets. I loved working with illustrators and I can proudly say that I gave a number of successful illustrators their very first job. After 10 enjoyable years I followed my passion for illustration and became a founder of The Organisation.

My main job within the company is now finding new talent and helping existing artists develop their portfolio by critiquing and supplying ideas for new samples.

Someone once said that if you love your job you’ll never work a day in your life and that’s exactly how I feel.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE:

If you do not have an agent and would like to be featured and hear what is working or how it could be tweaked to help you sell your work, then please send Two or Three SEQUENTIAL illustrations (Two/three with the SAME “story/characters‎”) to:

Kathy.temean (at) gmail.com. Illustrations should be at least 500 pixels wide and your name should be in the .jpg title. Please put ILLUSTRATOR PORTFOLIO in the subject area and include a blurb about yourself that I can use to introduce you to everyone.

Each Sunday one illustrator will be featured.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 16, 2016

Illustrator Saturday – Cynthia Kremsner

cynthiaCynthia Kremsner likes to write and draw characters with necks and legs strong enough to support their heads and bodies. And sometimes they have teeth! (Only now I draw them).

The things I really like to draw are dogs, other earthbound four-legged critters, and dogs, two-legged primate critters, and dogs, water-submerged-finned-critters, and dogs,  feathered-flying critters, and dogs.

In 2009, I was selected by Laurent Linn, Art Director of Simon & Schuster BFYR as one of his 3 participants in the Nevada Mentor Program through the SCBWI. The Nevada Arts Council awarded me a Jackpot Grant to help fund my participation through the 6 month program. I value this opportunity so much and attribute much of my growth as an artist to this program. Refining my skills through critique groups with input from industry professionals who devote much of their time giving back has also been a tremendous gift in an exchange where give and take helped me grow as a creator.

My Howlywood Hounds have their own Facebook page and the pack is growing by leaps and pounces.

Here’s Cynthia explaining her process:

1 Drawing

First I draw my image. In the past I  lost the raw emotion of my first rendering when I traced it, the put it on transfer paper drawing a 2nd and a 3rd time using transfer paper to watercolor paper. Now, I draw the image once and scan it. I do clean up and adjusting in Photoshop, then lighten it and print it on watercolor paper with my Epson Stylus Pro printer. This helps me keep the essence of the original.  After that, I paint with watercolors and gouaches then add details with colored pencils.

3 Scan of Originarotated2nd and 3rd images to stitch together.

4 Scan of Originalrotated

I work large, so the scans usually need stitching.

5 stitched scan

The colors are generally pretty washed up in comparison to my original. I always keep the painting next to my computer so I can adjust the scan in Photoshop to bring it as close to the original as possible. I size things a bit, as I remember, I lengthened the snout of the hound a bit in Photoshop. I also softened some of the sky and clouds.

8900b5_e079e8d12a2242268cf6dfc162691d40

The final image after clean-up and adjusting.

1 My Puppy Cover

Book Covers

1Masterpiece

How long have you been illustrating?

I’ve been drawing since I was a young girl. When I was six, my brother and I collaborated, writing and illustrating our own picture book,. Although we weren’t savvy enough in those days to submit to publishers, it sparked an enduring interest in creating characters and their stories. I actively began to pursue writing and illustrating for children fourteen years ago.

ship ahoy

Where do you live?

Sparks, Nevada . . . well, actually Spanish Springs Nevada. We’re in a rural area of Sparks which is a suburb of Reno. Our SCBWI group in Northern Nevada includes some tremendous Young Adult and Middle Grade authors. Several years ago, they established a Mentor Program that’s been facilitated in some of Northern Nevada’s historic and scenic places such as Virginia City and Lake Tahoe.

8900b5_1dc3944cb0147ea19ec77db9eb0c98c1

What was the first thing you painted where someone paid you for your work?

I’ve done line-work for logos and caricatures of children.

beach dogs

Did you go to school for art?

Yes/sort of. If so where and why did you pick that school? Santa Rosa Junior College. It was where my father lived.

2016-postcard-cynthia-kremsner-copyright-2016

What did you study there?

I actually started my studies with the intent of becoming a graphic artist so I took some design classes, Psychology, Drama & English.

dancing

Do you feel College helped develop your style?

As my studies there were limited to one year and a different type of art, it wasn’t what truly pushed me in the direction I ended up taking. However, about nine years ago, our Regional Advisor encouraged me to apply for the NVSCBWI Mentor Program as Laurent Linn, Art Director for Simon & Schuster BFYR was one of the mentors. I wasn’t sure if I’d be selected, but decided if I were fortunate enough to have that happen, that it would be helpful. As luck would have it, I was selected and was able to work with him on an individual basis. I believe that experience truly did help develop my style. There was much emphasis on expressions, light and shadow, and range of emotion.

hot air balloon

Have you seen your work change since you left school?

I’ll apply this question to the mentor program and answer yes, it’s changed much since that experience. Online critique partners were extremely persuasive in pushing me to try another medium. I was working with colored pencils and found my work was taking a long time to complete and I wasn’t getting the desired affects I strived for. Watercolors were suggested, more than once or twice. Since my only bad grade in art was during the watercolor session in high school, I wasn’t easily swayed. Albeit, in high school, I was working with a crusty old tin of dried up paints that was given to me and a plastic brush. I’m thankful for the honesty and suggestions for change. After I’d been painting on my own with watercolors for two years, I got my first contract with a traditional publisher.

bears

When did you decide you wanted to illustrate for children?

After I had my third child I struggled with a few health issues and depression. It was reaching for something I’d always wanted to do, writing and illustrating, then actively pursuing it, that helped me regain my focus. Since then, for the last fourteen years, it’s been what I do.

air surfing

Was My Puppy Gave to Me your first picture book with a major publisher?

Yes

scarecrow and lion

How did you get that contract?

Postcard Mailers. I’m not sure if it was just one that caught their eye, or a collection of them. I’d kept with the theme of dogs and puppies for three consecutive mailers, so that may have put me in the right file at the right time with a style that was desired.

cat

Did you do other types of illustrating before you got that book contract?

Some logos for small businesses. The past couple of years, my hounds have been embraced by some national dog rescue organizations who have contracted my work for logos and images for special events.

ruff seas

Did you write A Masterpiece for the Duke after My Puppy?

Masterpiece was written several years ago when I was considering just writing instead of both writing and illustrating because I wasn’t as confident with my art as I was with writing. Friends/Critique partners have always brought it up and it’s been revisited several times. What’s funny was I let go of the art to pursue being a picture book writer and after getting back to the artwork and giving it a good go, my first contract was for illustrations, not text.

puperrazi

Why didn’t you illustrate that book?

I believe that humor in Masterpiece dictates a certain style, one which I didn’t feel my illustrations could represent best when I was sending it out, so I submitted it as text only and didn’t mention that I was an illustrator. It was enlightening, helping me understand the process of waiting for illustrations and wanting to know how they would look as well as being the one who delivers them, hoping that the writer is happy with the work.

canon

How many picture books have you illustrated?

My Puppy was the first, and I’ve just signed another contract with Pelican Publishing to illustrate another Christmas book.

christmas

Are you working on writing and illustrating your own book?

Yes, a few of them. I’ve got one dummy out on submission and I’m working on another right now. (This one with an even newer style, one I’m having a lot of fun with).

broken bulbs

What do you think is your biggest success?

There are everyday successes, being there for kids, our pets, seeing them through pitfalls and achievements, and the tenacity to keep reaching for my own goals, that all adds up to something big.

bee bear

Do you have an artist rep. Or an agent?

I haven’t had an agent or art representative. I’ve queried on occasion, but at the same time, I was sending promotionals to publishers. The relationship agents and representatives have with publishers is so valued, especially when it comes to negotiating or editorial questions. When this new dummy is completed, I’m enthused to query agents straight away.

red panda

Do you illustrate full time?

I have a full time job at a financial institution and am working my way into illustrating/writing full time. Each publication is a step in that direction and I hope to keep going.

dog

Do you have a favorite medium you use?

Watercolors. I love their fluidity, their blending abilities, their acceptance to let other mediums into the mix and the way they surprise you. I add colored pencils and gouaches into the mix to get the details and saturation that I want.

fancy dogs

Do you take research pictures before you start a project?

Only once or twice. For the most-part, when I illustrate I go into Youtube and search what I’m drawing because I feel the best way to portray a character it is to get the movement down. Sometimes, I get stuck there because I’m intrigued by orcas hunting in unison or learning the behavior traits of dog breeds. It’s never time wasted, it’s character knowledge gained.

giraffe

Do you use Photoshop with any of your work?

Yes. I use it for clean up and sometimes resizing or placement if an object is off a bit.

hula

Do you have and use a graphic tablet?

Currently, I don’t. I have a Wacom Bamboo, but it’s a bit older and the stylus decided to retire. Because I’m relying less on Photoshop and more on my traditional mediums, it hasn’t been replaced. But, I can see myself going for an upgraded tablet in the future. I would really like to experiment with digital a bit more.

yak attack

Do you follow any type of routine to attain your career goals?

I visit bookstores often to peruse through picture books. There are amazing things people are achieving with traditional mediums and programs. Looking at the new releases keeps me in check and motivates me to put the best I can into my own work.

tea party

Do you think the Internet has opened any doors for you?

Yes. Through a couple of online communities, I connected with some pretty amazing talents and we participated in a small online critique group. That’s where I met the person who challenged me to change my artistic medium. There are also boards and Facebook pages where an illustrator can post work and get input pretty quickly.

motorcycles

What are your career goals?

My next goal would be to be both author and illustrator of a traditionally published picture book. From there, I’ll figure out new goals . . . as long as I can keep creating.What are you working on now? Character studies and a picture book dummy.

music

Are there any painting tips (materials, paper, etc.) you can share that work well for you? Technique tips?

There is a Youtube tutorial for using a wet palette and kosher salt that makes for some excellent textures. I used it for the sand in my “Hot Dogs” illustration and parts of the ocean in the banner on my website. For the latter, I left some areas dry for the foam in the waves, I dragged the brush across the paint in the direction of the waves before the paint dried in areas where I wanted to direct the movement. With that technique, there is little control, it’s the wet paper, watercolors and salt making most of the calls. As long as you use colors that blend nicely or work well against one another and you work quickly, the outcome should be acceptable or even better. I’ve a mop brush for blending clouds and sky, and when that’s not quite enough, I use the clone tool in photoshop with the soft round pressure, to grab pixels and smooth things out once the work is scanned.

scarecrow

Any words of wisdom you can share with the illustrators who are trying to develop their career?

A formal education, or the school of hard knocks, as long as the efforts the same, the results can be too. If you think you shouldn’t try a new technique/medium because the prospect of learning something new may take time to master, conquering that doubt could lead to great things. Try to seek critique when you’re stuck, give critique in return, listen to a critique of someone else’s work and absorb what they’re learning. Just keep working on your craft until you can look at your own work and say “If I weren’t me, I think I might buy that.”

high-four

Thank you Cynthia for sharing your talent, process, journey, and expertise with us. Please make sure you keep in touch and share your future successes with us. To see more of Laura’s work, you can visit her at website at: www.cynthiakremsner

If you have a minute, please leave a comment for Cynthia. I am sure she’d love it and I enjoy reading them, too. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 15, 2016

July’s Featured Agent – Natalie Lakosil – Interview

Natalie Lakosil, Agent

Natalie Fischer LakosilNatalie is an agent at the Bradford Literary Agency. An honors graduate of the University of San Diego, California, Natalie holds a B.A. in Literature/Writing. After nearly four years at the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency and a brief dabble in writing author profiles and book reviews for the San Diego Union Tribune, Natalie joined the Bradford Agency in February of 2011.

Natalie is drawn to talented, hard-working new authors with a fresh, unique voice and hook. Her specialties are children’s literature (from picture book through teen and New Adult), romance (contemporary and historical), cozy mystery/crime, upmarket women’s/general fiction and select children’s nonfiction. Her interests include historical, multi-cultural, magical realism, sci-fi/fantasy, gritty, thrilling and darker contemporary novels, middle grade with heart, and short, quirky or character-driven picture books. She is always drawn to an open and positive attitude in an author, professionalism, good grammar, and fantastical, beautifully written, engaging and sexy plots.

Below is Natalie Lakosil’s Interview – Part One 

How important is the query letter?

Very! Most of my new clients are found through submissions. Does it have to be perfect? No; but does it have to clearly be something that I’m interested in? YES.

Any tips on how an author can get you to ask to see more?

The query is like the aroma of fresh bread…make me want to walk into that bakery! Keep it short; don’t feel the need to tell me everything that happens – outline the hook. What makes your book stand out?

How far do you normally read before you reject a submission?

That depends; I read as far as I need to have an answer. Most of the time, that’s within 15 pages if I’ve requested – it’s the first three lines from a query letter.

Would you lose interest in a submission if the writer missed correcting a few misspelled words?

Within the query letter and opening pages, I’d be pretty hesitant; it would need to be truly amazing. If there were a few typos or grammatical errors in a full, no.

Do you let people know if you are not interested in what was sent?

Yes; I respond personally to anything I request, and we do have a form pass for submissions rejected at the query stage.

Have you noticed any common mistakes that writers make?

Over-writing, and/or critiquing the first 30 pages to death and having a manuscript that doesn’t live up to that promise. Having a book that’s not long enough or too long for the genre.

Any pet peeves?

Strange or improper email greetings. Self-deprecating query letters.

Do you give editorial feedback to your clients?

Yes!

Do you have an editorial style?

I’m fairly involved, though I always strive to edit within a writer’s unique voice.

How many clients do you have?

Thirty-four – all listed on my blog: http://www.adventuresinagentland.com/p/my-clients_2.html

Natalie is not looking for: Inspirational novels, memoir, romantic suspense, adult thrillers, poetry, screenplays.

Blog: www.adventuresinagentland.com

Twitter @Natalie_Lakosil

INTERVIEW PART TWO: Next Friday

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES For FIRST PAGE CRITIQUES:

In the subject line, please write “July First Page Critique” and paste the text in the email, plus attached it as a Word document to the email. Please make sure you include your name, the title of the piece, and whether it’s a picture book, middle grade, or young adult, etc. at the top on both the email and the Word document (Make sure you include your name with the title of your book, when you save the first page).

Your First Page Word document should be formatted using one inch margins and 12 point New Times Roman font – double space – no more than 23 lines – only one page. Send to: kathy(dot)temean(at)gmail(dot)com.

PLEASE FOLLOW THE GUIDELINES: Your submission will be skipped over if you do not follow the directions for both the pasted email and the attached Word doc. This is where most people mess up.

DEADLINE: July 21st.

RESULTS: July 29th.

Please only submit one first page a month. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 14, 2016

Agent Ginger Knowlton – Curtis Brown

Ginger Knowlton, Executive Vice President

Great Opportunity to query a great agent at a great agency. Ginger Knowlton is now accepting email queries.

Ginger Knowlton, Executive Vice President

Ginger Knowlton at Curtis Brown represents a diverse list of authors and illustrators of picture books, middle-grade and young adult fiction and nonfiction. Her client list includes new and emerging writers as well as Newbery Medalists, Newbery and Printz Honor winners, Edgar and Lambda winners, New York Times bestsellers, and a host of other talented clients. Ginger has served on the Board of Directors of both the Association of Authors’ Representatives in NYC and the Friends of the Library in her hometown in Westchester County.

Ginger is currently accepting email queries from authors and illustrators of all children’s book genres, including YA. Please send your query letter and contact information along with the first ten pages of your manuscript or art samples to gk@cbltd.com and she will respond only if she’s interested in seeing more, usually within three to four weeks. Please include “gkquery” in the subject line of your email. If you prefer to query by mail, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope.

Query Tips:

“I think it would help if authors put ‘query’ as the subject line. Also, if authors who query me don’t hear back within a month, please feel free to send a gentle nudge along with the original email. Please don’t send attachments unless I request it.” (Link)

“Smart, funny, and engaging letters catch my eye. It’s best to include at least a first page of a longer manuscript with your query, and an entire picture book if that’s what you write. Let me see what you want me to sell.” (Link)

Response Times:

The agency’s stated response time is 6-8 weeks. Ms. Knowlton usually responds within a month, often around two weeks. Response times on requested material are limited but suggest a range of 1-2 months.

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy

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