Posted by: Kathy Temean | June 17, 2020

Agent Kaitlyn Johnson – Belcastro Literary Agency

Kaitlyn Johnson is now a Literary Agent with Belcastro Literary Agency, She is accepting submissions for Upper MG, YA, and Adult.

She would love seeing contemporary from voices not already flooding our bookshelves, perspectives that not everyone can claim to be familiar with. She wants fantasy/urban fantasy from non-American/non-European myths and legends, paranormal relevant to the culture and plot. Her paranormal tastes fluctuate, but she’s dying for a great ghost story or ghost hunter story! Also totally interested in vampires (contemporary or historical) if you give her the humor and whimsy of What We Do In The Shadows or some completely new, unique angle for vampires. Give her historical from places we never hear of, battles and events and changes that shifted world views yet never feature in mainstream discussions. Reading of people completely unlike herself, in places she’d love to explore and learn of, captivates her.

She’d love more LGBTQ+ storylines in all genres and ages (especially bi, ace, and trans voices!). Especially MG with first crushes. People just being people and living life and not necessarily focusing on being forced to explain themselves. Kaitlyn loves enemies-to-lovers and blind dates and villain romances. She also is very much looking for more main characters living with mental health issues or disability.

Upper MG

  • Fantasy (high, urban, or magical realism)
  • Contemporary
  • light Sci Fi
  • Horror or Paranormal (more creepy dolls, ghosts, and curses, less blood and guts)
  • Historical

Young Adult

  • Fantasy (high, urban, or magical realism)
  • Contemporary
  • Contemporary Romance
  • Historical
  • Paranormal (ghosts, witches, and vampires if unique; open to new legends/creatures)


  • Fantasy
  • light Sci Fi
  • Historical
  • Contemporary Romance/Rom-Com

For all ages, I really want historical that focuses on perspectives and places not in the mainstream. Give me legends, myths, events, battles that aren’t the everyday titles we see all the time. I’m not huge on retellings unless it’s in-depth and really makes me dig to figure out what story we’re rediscovering. I also really want more LGBTQ+ storylines and mental health themes and love stories where the people are just PEOPLE and it doesn’t have to be expressly about an issue.

Kaitlyn’s Specific wishlist:

  • I’m not huge on retellings. They need to be so deep and layered, that I have to dig before I realize what the retelling actually is based off. I’d love a gender-swap of Hercules retelling aaaand an Atlantis retelling (yes, the freaking amazing movie version).
  • Funny, witty contemporary romance that makes me laugh or heart-squishing romance the likes of Gayle Forman. I’m not a fan of uber dominating men or jock/sports storylines. Probably also not a good fit for female divas as main characters either (whether labeled diva for money, personality, or fashion, just not a fan of reading it). But I DEFF want feminists who find inclusive, non violent ways of pushing back the patriarchy (all genders).
  • I absolutely love darker voices in YA if tackling mental health issues and I’d love to see MG take on some deeper themes (homelessness, foster homes, autism, racism, feminism, etc.). Still looking for an amazing creepy mermaid/siren book as well as a Madame de Pompadour historical! Parent/teen dynamics like those in Easy A are on the wishlist. I also think a rom-com b/w workers in a house redesign or the client/contractor would be hilarious.
  • Really wanting contemporary, modern Wiccan, too, like with homes of hanging herbs and jars of remedies and cats!
  • MG with creepy freaking dolls or poltergeists; no clowns, please!
  • Very much want Graphic Novels! Check my MSWL Twitter posts for specifics

Here’s a run-down of genres she wants in age groups:

Upper MG
– Fantasy, Contemporary, light Sci Fi, Horror (more creepy dolls and curses, less blood and guts), Historical

Young Adult
– Fantasy (high, urban, or magical realism), Contemporary, Contemporary Romance, Historical, Paranormal (ghosts, witches, and vampires if unique; open to new legends/creatures)

– Fantasy, Light Sci Fi, Historical, Contemporary Romance

She does NOT accept:

  • Nonfiction
  • Chapter/Picture Books
  • Thriller/Suspense/Mystery
  • Romantic Suspense
  • Novellas/Poetry/Short Story Collections
  • Stories heavily dependent on religious motives/events/themes
  • Stories heavily dependent on rape, drug or physical abuse
  • Stories focusing on Henry VIII, Shakespeare, American Civil War, or Greek gods/myths

At the end of the day, though, I just want great writing! Lyrical, literary, commercial—if the voice is strong, I’ll take a look. You may just surprise me!

Submission Guidelines

Submissions should be emailed to

Belcastro Literary Agency utilizes Query Manager for all submissions. To query me, please be sure to follow this link and fill out all mandatory blanks (I require a query, synopsis, and first five pages). Submit here: 

Talk tomorrow,


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