Posted by: Kathy Temean | June 20, 2011

Summer Networking Dinner with Editor Info

With the conference behind us and summer arriving this week, I thought I would remind everyone of the Summer Networking Dinners taking place with editors and agents in NYC and one in September in Princeton.  I have added information for the editors and will add agent info later this week. Please do not rush out to submit to the editors on this list. Most are not open to unsolicited submissions. Please check out the info from additional sources.

IMPORTANT:  If you sign up to join one of the dinners, you will receive the most up-to-date detailed information on the editors and agents attending the dinner.

Sign up: Don’t miss the chance to build a relationship with an editor or agent. As writers and illustrators we always feel like we are being judged, but the fact is, we are judging, too. Attending events like these where you can meet editors and agents, allows you to form opinions about who you would like to work with. Everyone is not a fit for you, so save yourself some time and join us. The networking dinners are a great way to find out who is right for you in a non-threatening venue.

July 5th – Cafe Centro in their private dining room. Includes glass of wine, salad, dessert, and choice of entrée. $150 Time: 6:30 pm

STEVEN MELTZER- Associate Publisher/ Executive Managing Editor, Dial, Dutton, Celebra. Great PB books, fiction or narrative nonfiction. Some nonfiction (PB only) Graphic Novels, Fantasy, Edgy, YA.  He suggests that authors need to answer certain questions when they send a book to an editor: What makes your book special? What is the unique draw of the book? What makes it exciting? Is there a curriculum tie-in? Timely topic? Historical setting? What are the comparison titles?

Steve has edited many books for young readers, including John Madden’s Heroes of Football: The Story of America’s Game; The Sydney Taylor award-winning, Hanukkah at Valley Forge by Stephen Krensky, illustrated by Greg Harlin; Barbarians! By Steven Kroll, illustrated by Robert Byrd; Useful Fools by C.A. Sc hmidt (a Booklist Best Book of the Year). Also, Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse by Rebecca Janni, illustrated by Lynne Avril, and Mud Tacos! by Mario Lopez and Marissa Lopez Wong, illustrated by Maryn Roos.  He has also helped many unpublished SCBWI writers find their way to publication.

EVE ADLER, Editor, Grosset & Dunlap. Eve works on a variety of formats from baby to YA, and is looking for manuscripts for all ages: PBs, MG novels, and YA. She has worked with award-winning authors and illustrators such as Kimberly Willis Holt, Elise Broach, and Janet Tashjian. She enjoys manuscripts with a fresh voice and exceptional writing; for MG and YA projects, she likes contemporary, edgy, historical, coming-of-age, humorous stories, and for PBs. She‘s most interested in texts that have a curriculum tie-in or educational hook.

Zack Clark is an Editorial Assistant with Scholastic’s Paperbacks Division. He has worked on the Guardians of Ga’Hoole series, edited the Lost Tales of Ga’Hoole Companion Book, and the forthcoming Animorphs series re-launch. Currently, Zack does not handle picture books. He is interested, however, in MG or YA novels and accepts any of the following categories: graphic novels, historic fiction, fantasy, and edgy.

NICK ELIOPULOS- Editor – Scholastic Trade. MG and YA. Looking for boy interest novels, high concept sci fi and fantasy. He is the editor of the picture book Squirrelly Gray, the middle-grade novel The Hound of Rowan, and a forthcoming graphic-novel series called The Sons of Liberty.  He also creates comics in his spare time, and has had short pieces published in the anthologies Stuck in the Middle and First Kiss (Then Tell).  While he’s open to submissions for any age range or format, Nick is primarily interested in middle-grade fiction with boy appeal. He says, “Hooks help—a lot. Even once I’ve signed on a book, I have to pitch it to sales and marketing, who have to pitch it to retailers and librarians. If you’ve got a unique and memorable spin, that’s half the battle won.”

Tina Wexler – Agent – ICM | International  Creative Management

Holly McGhee – Agent and Owner – Pippin Properties

Carlie Webber – Agent – Jane Rotrosen Agency

July 6th –  Churrascaria PlatformaPrivate Room – includes amazing salad bar, unlimited beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, pork,  fish, shrimp, pasta, sushi. Dessert comes with the meal, also one alcoholic beverage, unlimited bottled water and soda. I guarantee you will not leave hungry.
Price: $170 Time: 6:00 pm $10 parking with dinner 

ALVINA LING, Fiction Editorial Director – Little, Brown, and Co. Acquires for all ages, Baby through teen. Looks for reasons to say “no” to projects: not well written, too slight, too quiet, forced rhyme, off rhythm (for picture books, mainly), too similar to something already on our list, too similar to too many books already in the market, forced/​inauthentic dialogue, too didactic, melodramatic, cliche, slow pacing, too niche in appeal.

SARAH DOTTS BARLEY– Associate Editor, HarperCollins (formerly at Holt). At Holt, Sarah, as assistant Editor, worked with two senior editors: Reka Simonsen and Kate Farrell on everything from picture book biographies to novels in verse to gritty YA to fantasy to illustrated chapter books. Books she has worked on include: Clare Dunkle’s upcoming House of Dead Maids, Nicholas Dane by YA author Melvin Burgess.

Leila Sales – Assistant Editor – Viking Books.  Leila works on hardcover, literary fiction and nonfiction for children of all ages, though she’s particularly drawn to contemporary middle grade and YA.  She likes smart, funny, voice-driven stories with characters she cares about.  In addition to being an editor at Viking, she is also an author. Her first YA novel, MOSTLY GOOD GIRLS, will be published this fall.

ARIEL COLLETTI, Assistant Editor at Simon and Schuster Children’s Books. Ariel is currently part of the editorial team working on Cynthia Rylant’s new Brownie and Pearl series at Beach Lane Books and has assisted on projects such as Phyllis Reynolds Naylor’s acclaimed Alice series and the upcoming Narco Boy by Evan Coleman. She is also the paperback coordinator for the Children’s Trade Division. Ariel is open to a wide variety of projects but is first and foremost interested in looking for strong MG voices and young, fun, interactive PBs.

Elena Mechlin Agent – Pippin Properties

Stephen Barbara – Agent – Foundry Literary & Media

July 19th – Cafe Centro in their private dining room. Includes glass of wine, salad, dessert, and choice of entrée. $150 Time: 6:30 pm

CATHERINE ONDER–Senior Editor, Disney-Hyperion. She focuses on teen and tween novels, and also edits some picture books. Authors she works with include Geraldine McCaughrean, Jenny Valentine, Georgia Byng, Allan Stratton, Lynn Messina, Eric Carle, Robert Sabuda, and Jane Yolen.  She conceived of and edited the first literary monster mash-ups aimed at teens: Little Vampire Women and Romeo & Juliet & Vampires. Catherine was also the editor for The White Darkness by Geraldine McCaughrean, winner of the 2008 Printz Award. Whether funny and light or dark and mysterious, traditional or edgy, she looks for strong narrative and voice, and a clear vision in all manuscripts.

ALEXANDRA COOPER – Senior Editor at Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.  Simon & Schuster Books publishes for a general audience of children from preschool to teen.  Ms. Cooper works on hardcover trade picture books, middle-grade fiction, and young adult novels.  Some of her titles include Escaping into the Night by Dina Friedman, Huge by Sasha Paley, and Bear of My Heart by Joanne Ryder, illustrated by Margie Moore.  She enjoys funny picture books and voice-driven fiction. Editors want a balance between backlist authors and new authors (looking for writers she can work with again), as well as a balance between commercial and literary books.  Right now, she’s signing more novels than picture books, but it’s cyclical, she said.  One of the reasons publishing companies are more cautious on picture books right now is the cost and economy.  Color picture books are printed in China, and the weak dollar is making printing costs rise.

CAITLYN DLOUHY, Editorial Director at Atheneum.  She’s edited The Wolfbay Wings hockey series by Bruce Brooks; If You Give a Pig a Pancake, by Laura Numeroff/​Felicia Bond; The Leaf Men and Santa Calls by William Joyce; BUZ by Richard Egielski; The Sky Is Always in the Sky by Karla Kuskin.  Caitlyn is looking for a manuscript that sends her mind off already imagining illustrations or an illustrator.  PBs must be visual, concise, and active.  She loves quirky and different kinds of experiences, and if she reacts with the feeling that “I love this world and I want to be in it,’ she’s sold. Humor is always an appeal, but stories that touch a soft spot are also welcome.  Strong characters are a must.  She’s always looking for strong middle grade and YA, but generally not looking for a series.  Three strong features she looks for in both YA and middle grade are compelling, vivid characters, unique voices and points of view, and a richly worked plot.  Sweet Valley High books are not her forte!

John Cusick – Agent – Scott Treimel NY, Literary Agency

Linda Pratt – Agent – Wernick & Pratt Agency

Mary Kole – Agent – Andrea Brown Literary Agency

Liza Fleissig – Agent – Liza Royce Literary Agency

July 20th A.J. MaxwellsPrivate dining room. Dinner includes, salad, entrée, dessert, one alcoholic drink, soda, coffee, tea. Price: $150 Time: 6:00 pm

Eileen Robinson – Editorial Consultant – F1rst Pages Former executive editor at Scholastic.  Now an editorial consultant, Eileen works with both published and unpublished authors to help them strengthen their writing. Eileen
will look at their work from a marketing perspective and learn the part of the business that isn’t working so they have a better chance of getting published.  Eileen created the site to help authors like you and has partnered with Harold Underdown, author of the Idiot’s Guide to Publishing Children’s Books and owner of the Purple Crayon web site, to provide online tutorials at Kids Book Revisions (, where you can get the benefit of two professional editors simultaneously.

REBECCA FRAZER– Acquisitions Editor – Sourcebooks, Jabberwocky.  Ms. Frazer acquires picture books, beginner chapter books, and middle-grade fiction for Jabberwocky—both series and stand-alone titles.  She is interested in picture book authors and illustrators who use language and art to inspire the imagination.  Rebecca is also looking for middle-grade projects in the areas of friendship, mystery, humor, fantasy, and historical fiction.

SHAUNA FAY – Assistant Editor at G. P. Putnam’s Sons, a division of Penguin Young Readers Group. Shauna works on everything from PBs to YA novels. She has edited the PB book, Little Pink Pup by Johanna Kerby, and has worked on Jack Higgins’ YA action series written with Justin Richards, as well as Jan Bret’s Snowy Treasury, and Goodnight Goon and Runaway Mummy by Michael Rex. While open to books for all ages, she is particularly interested in MG fiction with a strong narrative voice, historical fiction, and is a sucker for a romantic ending. She is also interested in young funny, simple picture book texts and is open to rhyme.

ERIN CLARKE – Executive Editor at Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers, an imprint of Random House Children’s Books, where she has worked for eleven years. Authors and illustrators with whom she works include Markus Zusak, Julia Alvarez, Meghan McCarthy, Lesley M.M. Blume, Anna Alter, Mark Alan Stamaty, Karen Foxlee, Mick Cochrane, Barbara Jean Hicks, and Sue Hendra. Erin is interested in publishing good stories regardless of genre or themes that might be contained in them. She edits six to eight novels per year as well as picture books. The percentage of her first time writers varies. Currently about 20% of her list is made up of first-time writers. She is interested in building a long-term relationship and hopes to do many more books with them.

SARA SARGENT, Editorial Assistant –  Balzer & Bray, imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books, Sara works on projects ranging from picture books through YA and has worked  with such authors as Candace Bushnell, Mo Willems and Doreen Cronin. While  open to books for all age ranges, she is particularly interested in middle grade and YA fiction in the following categories: dystopian, literary romance, and coming-of-age stories. Her favorite books include 13 Reasons Why,The Summer I Turned Pretty, Marcelo in the Real World, and Before I Fall.

Heather Alexander – Editorial Assistant for Dial Books for Young Readers. Heather is interested in acquiring books for all age ranges, from PBs to YA, especially character driven stories with a unique voice or hook. She loves raucous PBs (especially ones written in prose and that are without an obvious lesson), funny, unique MG, and smart contemplative YA. She is not mad for high fantasy, but can get down with contemporary or urban fantasy and almost anything post-apocalyptic with a literary bent. She is not necessarily the go-to gal for non-fiction or vampires. She co-edited the upcoming Every Cowgirl Needs a Horse by Rebecca Janni. Recently, Heather has been working on a hilarious PB of etiquette, and co-editing a NG novel for boys, doing research for the just-published The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and assisting on countless other titles.

Scott Treimel – Owner and Agent – Scott Treimel Literary Agency

Marietta Zacker – Agent – Nancy Gallt Literary Agency

August 23rd – Cafe Centro in their private dining room. Includes glass of wine, salad, dessert, and choice of entrée. Price: $150 Time: 6:00 pm

MEREDITH MUNDY, Senior Editor at Sterling Publishing Co. – likes character centered picture books. There are too many obvious lessons in PB’s. A Colorado native, she is a big fan of pugs, poetry, and gardening (guerrilla and otherwise). She is currently looking for character-centered picture books; original non-fiction with pizzazz; and unusual activity books for children of all ages. Sterling has a new line of YA and MG novels.

CONNIE HSU is an Editor at Little Brown Books for Young Readers.  Connie has seen it all, from board books to YA.  She has edited The Devouring #1-3 (YA horror), The A-List Hollywood Royalty #1-2 (a spin-off from the bestselling The A-List series), and Moonshadow (MG ninja spy adventure).  She has an affinity for Edward Gorey and Roald Dahl, and has acquired a similarly hilarious MG novel,  The Adventures of Nanny Piggins.  She also acquired the fully illustrated YA novel, Happyface by Emo Boy comic creator Stephen Emond, and she recently acquired a PB biography based on Booker T. Washington by Guggebheim Fellow Jabari Asim.  At one conference, Ms. Hsu mentioned (with tongue firmly planted in cheek) that she thinks children are “morbid and strange” and though she doesn’t want to see books about cute animals, she likes to see anything with dead animals.  She describes herself as “hungry & completely strange.”  She loves it when animals talk about their humans.  And speaking of animals, in picture books, she likes real 100% true animal stories- Marley and Me, Chowder, but not so much fiction starring animals.

LB has moved to a paperless submission process, and only accepts submissions that are agented, editor-requested, met at SCBWI Event, or are Hachette employee referrals. The editors use e-readers. A “no” to a manuscript from one editor at LB is a no from the whole  house. And once a manuscript is declined by an editor there, it is a wholesale NO on that work unless they ask for revisions. So make sure you (or your agent) really knows what an individual editor wants.

REGINA GRIFFIN, Executive Editor – Egmont USA. Regina is actively seeking MG and YA novels. She also is open to debut writers. Unfortunately, Egmont USA does not take unsolicited Manscripts. Have agent submit or meet at an SCBWI event.  Books Ms. Griffin recommends: Harriet, the Spy, The Penderwicks. Recent books she has edited:  Leaving the Bellweathers -by Kristin Clark Venuti and Vordak the Incomprehensible: How to Grow Up and Rule the World by Vordak T. Incomprehensible  What attracts her: a distinctive voice. What interests her: quirky, inventive, interesting characters. Query no-no’s: “I read it to my kids and they loved it!” Regina says, “When I first started in this career, we used to get 30 manuscripts and 27 of them were really bad, so 3 got published. Now I get 30 manuscripts and 27 of them are excellent, but still, only 3 can get published.”

NAMRATA TRIPATHI -​ Executive Editor – Atheneum BFYR  – Namrata describes herself as analytical and nurturing, saying she would describe the books she most enjoys as eclectic and literary. She wants young YA historical fiction/​ humorous parodies/​ and all levels of fiction and non-fiction with unique voices and diverse characters.  She loves a book that is heartwarming and leaves readers with something to think about. She says, “If an editor, or more than one, becomes interested in your work, figure out what it is that YOU will need from your editor (compatible personality style for working together on revisions, similar communication style, etc), and consider whether the editor expressing interest in your book can meet those needs.”

Stephen Fraser – Agent – Jennifer DeChiara Literary Agency

Molly JaffaAgent – Folio Literary

Christina Hogrebe – Agent – Jane Rotrosen Agency

August 24th – Trattoria Depo Teatro Private Dining Room – Salad, Entrée, Sides, Dessert, unlimited soft drink, an alcoholic  beverage. Price: $145 Time: 6:00 pm

KATE SULLIVAN–editor, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and the commercial young women’s series imprint Poppy. Currently for Little, Brown, Kate edits the Darren Shan program and Ash by Malinda Lo, an ALA William C Morris YA Debut Award finalist. At Poppy, some of Kate’s projects include New York Times bestselling The A-List series, Jen Calonita’s stand alones and Secrets of My Hollywood Life series, and, The DUFF (Designated Ugly Fat Friend) by debut teenaged author Kody Keplinger. She is primarily looking for novels that make her laugh aloud on a crowded subway, show a cynical or quirky worldview, are smart without being boring, or have strong, defiant characters (who may or may not have a penchant for monstrous behavior).

TAMRA TULLER, Senior Editor – Philomel – PB, Middle Grade, YA, Graphic Novels, Historical Fiction, Edgy. Philomel Books. PB and YA,/​older MG lierary novels. Smart books with heart and substance and a touch of humor. No fantasy, sci fi, younger MG, preachy or slapstick books. Tamra is interested in picture books, but she really isn’t into rhyme. She does middle grade and young adult novels. Is open to non-fiction, graphic novels historical fiction, but doesn’t do fantasy. As far as YA, she will consider somewhat edgy work, but not extremely edgy. Tamra has worked on books by authors such as Patricia Polacco, Brian Jaques, Mike Lupica, David Shannon, and Jane Yolen.

CLAUDIA GABEL is a Senior Editor at Katherine Tegen Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Children’s Books, acquiring and developing middle grade and YA fiction in a variety of genres. Her best known titles are the New York Times bestselling series Summer Boys by Hailey Abbott, and the Scarlett Wakefield mystery novels by Lauren Henderson. Ms. Gabel used to work for Alloy entertainment that produced projects such as Gossip Girl and The Vampire Diaries. She’s also worked at Delacorte.  She likes to do development work and has also worked as a book packager.  She looks for beautiful prose.  But she’s also looking for people who can write fast! She likes to keep a ramped up schedule. She’s also interested in tween books and teen mysteries and doesn’t like query letters with no personality.  She wants to see who you are on the page.

KAREN CHAPLIN, Editor at HarperCollins Children’s Books. Karen acquires hardover tween and teen fiction. Some of the projects she has worked on previously include Students Across the Seven Seas series, Zombie Queen of Newberry High by Amanda Ashby, Exclusively Chloe by J. A. Yang, and the Specialists series by Shannon Greenland. Karen is looking for fun, original series fiction as well as stand alone fiction for the MG and YA markets. While science fiction/​fantasy is not her cup of tea, the genres she is looking for include chick lit, fun action/​adventure series (boy and girl), mysteries, horror/​paranormal, romance, stories with strong female characters (including topics such as sisters and friendships), anything boy-centric, and commercial literary and edgy fiction. Send synopsis and first three chapters.

Sean McCarthy – Agent – Sheldon Folgelman Literary Agency

Christa Heschke – Agent – McIntosh & Otis

Ginger Harris – Agent – Liza Royce Literary Agency

September 8th – KC Prime– 4160 Quakerbridge Rd., Lawrenceville, NJ Salad, entrée, dessert, drink and soda, tea and coffee. Price: $140 Time: 6:30 pm

MARGERY CUYLER, Publisher, Marshall Cavendish–PBs, Rhyming books, Board Books, Easy Reader/​Chapter Books, Middle Grade, YA, Non Fiction, Graphic Novels, Historical fiction, Fantasy, Edgy. She likes a novel that “immediately represents modern conflict” and one that doesn’t “hold the story hostage to the message.” At a conference specifically geared to the Jewish market, Ms. Cuyler mentioned that there’s a big need for “good Jewish mysteries and time travel” as well as a need for “contemporary Jewish stories.”

CAROLYN YODER- Senior Editor – Calkins Creek (Boyds Mills history imprint). Also senior editor of Highlights magazine history section. Author of John Adams: The Writer, Fall 2007, Carolyn currently works on nonfiction and historical fiction PBs, chapter books, and novels on American History. She has edited the following Calkins Creek titles: We Are One: The Story of Bayard Rustin (2008 Norman A. Sugarman Children’s Biography Award, Cleveland Public Library; 2008 Jane Addams Book Award, Older Children’s Category); Jeanette Rankin: Political Pioneer (2008 Amelia Bloomer project List; Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People, 2008: 2008 Once Upon a World Book Award in the new YA category, Simon Wiesenthal Center-Museum of Tolerance); Farmer George Plants a Nation (School Library Journal Best Book of the Year; Outstanding Science Trade Book, National Science Teachers Association and the Children’s Book Council; an Ohio Farm Bureau’s Children’s Book Award: A Wisconsin Ag in the Classroom Book of the Year). Carolyn is currently seeking manuscripts on American history.

Lisa Cheng Lisa Cheng is an Editor at Running Press Kids, an imprint of Running Press Book Publishers, which is a member of the Perseus Books Group. Lisa has previously worked at HarperCollins Children’s Books, Atheneum BFYR and Margaret K. McElderry Books at Simon & Schuster, and PlayBac Publishing USA. She has had the pleasure of working with such authors and artists as Michael Spooner, Susan Shaw, Adrienne Maria Vrettos, Lee White, E. B. Lewis, Toni Buzzeo, Joan Hiatt Harlow, and Barbara Odanaka.  She is currently seeking novelty and picture books (particularly with fun added elements), and middle grade and teen novels. For novels, she is interested in strongly grounded, compelling voices with broad appeal that immediately connect with the reader.

Joe Monti – Agent, Barry Goldblatt Literary

Liza Fleissig – Agent – Liza Royce Literary Agency

The number of spots available for each dinner is based on two members for every editor/agent attending the dinner.  So if there are 7 editors/agents, there would be 14 available spots.

Okay, so how do you register? Email and let her know you want a spot.  Then you need to immediately send in your money for the dinner to:

NJSCBWI – Summer Networking Dinners
PO BOX 660
Ringoes, NJ  08551

or PayPal it using

The New Jersey SCBWI is not responsible for editor/agents getting sick, changing dates, and or dropping out.  We will do everything we can to keep the ratio the same in the event that this happens.  Please note: No refunds for dinners, since they have to be paid in advanced and guaranteed.

Hope to see you there.

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Kathy, I only just did a bit of research in this way and REALLY appreciate all the work you’ve just done, combining the bios with each networking dinner 🙂 You are ALways thinking and working so hard for us! Thank you 🙂


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