Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 17, 2017

Agent Looking for Clients – Wishlist

Eric Smith is an associate literary agent at P.S. Literary, with a love for young adult books, sci-fi, fantasy, and non-fiction. He began his publishing career at Quirk Books in Philadelphia, working social media and marketing on numerous books he absolutely adored. Eric completed his BA in English at Kean University, and his MA in English at Arcadia University. A frequent blogger, his ramblings about books appear on Book Riot, Paste Magazine, Barnes & Noble’s blog, and more. As an author, he’s been published by Bloomsbury, Quirk, and Flux.

Young Adult: Eric is eager to find bright, diverse new voices in YA. Send him any genre in YA. He reads (and sometimes write!) YA frequently, so he’s fiercely passionate about YA books. You can also find him blogging about it on BookRiot, Barnes & Noble’s Teen Reads, and Paste Magazine. If he talks about something on there, it means he loves it.

Eric says, “I’d love to find more diverse sci-fi and fantasy YA. I’m a big fan of Tahereh Mafi, Kat Zhang, Justina Ireland, Zoraida Cordova, Renee Ahdieh, Ellen Oh, Sabaa Tahir, Melissa Grey, Courtney Alameda, and Sangu Mandanna. Zhang and Cordova’s debut trilogies helped get me into YA in the first place.” 

I also adore novels that genre blend, like Susan Dennard’s Something Strange and Deadly Series (fantasy, steampunk, zombies!), Adam Silvera’s More Happy Than Not (contemporary with a twist of sci-fi), and anything by Nova Ren Suma (magical realism and mystery!).”

Oh, and I love a really good, contemporary read that will make me cry. I LOVE TO CRY, and frequently talk about that on Twitter. See books by Lauren Morrill, Lauren Gibaldi, Aisha Saeed, Jeff Zentner, Ashley Herring-Blake, Randy Ribay, David Arnold, or Rebecca Phillips. They can be sunny and happy, or tragic and heartbreaking. Or both!” 

And please, PLEASE send me your LGBTQ books. Hero by Perry Moore is one of my absolute favorites, and I’d love to get a geeky book in my inbox. See books like Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli, Adam by Ariel Schrag, Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler, and Proxy by Alex London to get an idea of what I like. And the entire Robin Talley catalog. Every book she’s written.”

Science Fiction & Fantasy: Looking for high fantasy and exciting sci-fi, new worlds that simply can’t be put down, but that also do a bit of genre blending. John Scalzi is probably the perfect example. Redshirts (sci-fi collides with pop culture) and Lock In (sci-fi smashed up with noir and mystery) are great comps for what I love. Also see Chuck Wendig’s entire publication history. I love a memorable voice in genre, and his is one of the best.
When it comes to wildly imaginative worlds, he adores the work of Cherie Priest, Fran Wilde, and Gail Carriger. He’s not limited to steampunk though, he just happen to love a good steampunk story.

Cookbooks: Eric is particularly interested in cookbook ideas from bloggers. Do you have an awesome food blog with a growing audience? Can you take amazing photos? Are you an active part of the food blogger community? Eric says, “Let’s talk. I’m very open to helping develop ideas here, even if the book isn’t quite there yet.”

Non-Fiction: When it comes to non-fiction, Eric is interested in books that focus on pop culture, geekery, and/or teach readers about the odd and the unique. If you’ve ever picked up a book by Mary Roach, you’ll know exactly what he’s talking about. Non-fiction that explains big ideas and large concepts in ways that are accessible, fun, and humorous.
He’s also interested in essay collections, particularly humor, though I’m open to anything that’s really compelling. Think Davy Rothbart. Give him your awkward confessions. Make him laugh.

Blog to Book Ideas:He would love to work with bloggers kicking around ideas for developing their blog into a book. Think your massively popular Tumblr deserves a fun hardcover gift book? Let’s discuss.

Literary & Commercial Fiction: Very open to and excited to read some adult literary fiction, especially anything contemporary with a rom-com twist (think Nick Hornby) or mystery / thrillers that touch on current affairs (think Jon McGoran).
Eric is also very interested in literary fiction that does a bit of genre mashing. Think Station Eleven, The Last Policeman (one of my favorite books ever), or The Night Circus.

What Eric is Not Looking For:
Middle Grade or Picture Books (pitch my colleague Maria!)
Angel & demon love stories, Heaven / Hell stories.
Epics that are far over 100k+. He can do 100k, but if you’re hitting those 200k+ numbers, not right for him.
Non-fiction about sports or politics.
Thrillers about terrorism.
Horror novels. He likes them, but says he doesn’t know what makes a good one.
Anything comped as “Lovecraftian” (he was racist, not interested)
Commercial fiction about sports (exceptions made for sports YA, he loves sports YA!)

Please limit your submission to just a query letter that consists of the following:

  • Paragraph One – Introduction: Include the title and category of your work (i.e. fiction or nonfiction and topic), an estimated word count and a brief, general introduction.
  • Paragraph Two – Brief overview: This should read similar to back-cover copy.
  • Paragraph Three – Writer’s bio: Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background (awards and affiliations, etc.).


  • Do not send attachments. Please use text within the body of your e-mail.
  • Please do not submit a full-length manuscript/proposal unless requested.
  • Always let us know if your manuscript/proposal is currently under consideration by other agents/publishers.
  • Address your query to the attention of the agent you feel is the best match for your work.
  • Please do not query multiple agents at the agency simultaneously – if you don’t receive a response to your query within 4-6 weeks it means a no from the agency.

We only accept submissions via e-mail. Queries should be directed to
We do not accept or respond to phone, paper or social media queries.

Check out Eric’s recent sales:

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Eric, I’m an author of Christian Romance Suspense, but for some time now, I’ve thought about writing a cookbook for Basic Down-Home Recipes. I’ve created a lot of my own recipes for good food, and get compliments all the time on the dishes I create. I’m also am amateur photographer, again receiving a lot of nice compliments on the pictures I’ve taken. This morning I thought about that cookbook again while mixing up one of my recipes. Is there a chance that once I get this all put together, you would be interested in taking a look at what I have?

    Currently, I’m at the end of a rewrite of my first novel (written before I knew anything about writing, mind you. LOL), and have to get that ready to send to CreateSpace for publishing. Yes, I’m an Indie author. But when I’m finished, I think I’m going to put that cookbook together before starting to rewrite my second novel.

    Please let me know what you think. Thank you.


    • Sharon,

      I doubt that Eric will read the comments, but he sounds like he would be interested in seeing what you put together. Try to come up with a creative way to present the manuscript, so it is different. As for the novel, make sure you let other people read it before you self-publish. After that I would hire a copy editor to make sure everything is spelled right and grammatically correct. You don’t want to put your book out before it is ready. Remember your reputation – readers will judge you and you want them to buy your next book.

      Good luck,



      • Thanks for the advice, Kathy. Yes, I have all of that for my novels. They are done as professionally now as any seasoned Indie author. I appreciate you giving the warning though. I wish I had had that kind of advice before I published it the first time. LOL

        I will take your advice regarding the cookbook as well. It will be a while yet before I can put everything together and take pictures to submit. I thought of calling the cookbook, “Simple Home Cooking” with a subtitle of “No fuss, No Bother, Throw Together and Enjoy.” That will probably change at least twenty times before I’m finished. LOL

        Thanks again.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


%d bloggers like this: