Posted by: Kathy Temean | August 18, 2017

August Featured Agent – Larissa Helena Part Two Interview

When Larissa Helena finally announced her decision to major in Literature, her family and friends were too polite to reply “duh”. But everyone already knew, even then, she had no choice but to keep exploring the magic of words. A few diplomas, translations and years working as an editor later, she packed her suitcases and ended up in a city so nice they named it twice. Larissa found her new literary home at Pippin, where she is now Associate Literary Agent & Manager of Subsidiary Rights, and feels lucky to be surrounded by words and people who understand and share her passion.

Larissa Helena, Agent, Pippin Properties. Larissa Helena’s passion is fiction: between Brazil, France and the United States, her only certainty is that she wants to be around books. Larissa has been an Executive Editor, a Translator, a Researcher, a Foreign Rights Manager and an Agent. She’s open to books for all ages, and wants diverse narratives of all kinds. Voices rarely seen in literature, unconventional stories, quirky characters. Her favorite kind of book doesn’t try to follow a pattern or play by the rules. Favorite genre? Genre bending.

For submissions, e-mail your first chapter along with a synopsis and query letter to Twitter: @larilena


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

I get an enormous amount of submissions, and it’s really hard to find the time to read everything… to individually let everyone know what I am not considering is almost impossible, especially because I like to give personal notes as much as I can, so I save my replies for the special cases.

How long does it usually take to respond to requested material?

I also double as a sub-rights agent, so it really depends on what’s happening on that side of things. I aim for something between a couple of weeks to a month.

Have you noticed any common mistakes that writers make?

Believe it or not, a few your instead of you’re and its instead of it’s and vice-versa.

Any pet peeves?

I really dislike when someone tells me “You’re going to love this”. I much prefer when people tell me why they think their story is different and worth telling, why they’re in love with it!

Do you give editorial feedback to your clients?

I do! I was an editor for years before I joined Pippin, so I can’t help myself.

Do you have an editorial style?

Yes, editing through dialogue. I honestly believe writers have the keys to their own stories. I will let them know what isn’t working, and we’ll talk until we can figure something out. It’s worked wonders until now, and the perk is that the authors always still recognize themselves in the final manuscript of the work.

How many clients do you have or want to build up to?

Pippin is a boutique agency, with a very select list of clients. I still haven’t found the one I’d like to represent, but I’m actively looking through my submissions in the hope that will happen soon!



In the subject line, please write “August 2017  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). REMEMBER: ATTACH THE WORD DOCUMENT AND NOT GET ELIMINATED!

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 passed 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: August 24th.
RESULTS: September 1st.

Please only submit one first page a month, but do try again if your first page wasn’t one of the pages randomly picked. Thanks!

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Larissa, what a gem she is!


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