Category Archives: Deal Announcements

August 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Marquette University professor of English B. Pladek’s DRY LAND, set at the cusp of America’s involvement in World War I, when a young queer forester discovers an uncanny gift for growing plants, seemingly from nothing, to Dennis Lloyd at University of Wisconsin Press, for publication in fall 2023, by Brenna English-Loeb at Transatlantic Literary Agency (world English).

Mark Waddell’s THE BODY IN THE BACK GARDEN, a queer cozy following a young investigative journalist as he inherits his estranged aunt’s estate in a coastal Canadian village, which includes a dead body behind the house that he is forced to investigate with a very handsome Mountie, to Faith Black Ross at Crooked Lane, for publication in fall 2023, by Melissa Edwards at Stonesong (world).

Ghassan Zeineddine’s DEARBORN, a collection of tragicomic stories that examines the diverse range and complexities of the Arab American community in Dearborn, Michigan, over several decades, exploring themes of identity, generational conflicts, war trauma, migration, sexuality, queerness, notions of home and belonging, and more, to Elizabeth DeMeo at Tin House Books, for publication in fall 2023.

Emily Hamilton’s THE STARS TOO FONDLY, a debut queer space odyssey—part sci-fi, part sapphic rom-com—following four friends who break into a storied spaceship with a mysterious past and accidentally blast off to a planet lightyears away, with a hologram of the ship’s previous captain as their only guide (and an improbable, impossible love interest); about found family, interdimensional travel, and the galaxy-saving power of love, to Nate Lanman at Voyager, in a very nice deal, at auction, by Roma Panganiban at Janklow & Nesbit (NA).

2021 Lambda Literary Fellow Craig Wilse’s PROVIDENCE, pitched as reminiscent of Patricia Highsmith, in which an introverted queer English professor falls for an enigmatic sophomore who lures him into his web of chaos and deceit, to Claire Wachtel at Union Square & Co, in a nice deal, in an exclusive submission, for publication in spring 2024, by Robert Guinsler at Sterling Lord Literistic (world English).

NYT-bestselling and Lambda Literary Award-winning author TJ Klune’s four original untitled novels about queer love and family, set in curious and enchanting worlds, to Ali Fisher at Tor, in a major deal, in a seven-figure deal, in an exclusive submission, in a four-book deal, by Deidre Knight at The Knight Agency (world English).

Clementine Taylor’s SOMETHING ABOUT HER, following two young women at the University of Edinburgh and the romantic connection that grows between them as they navigate the pressures of school and family, pitched in the vein of Sally Rooney and Emma Cline, to Gabriella Mongelli at Putnam, by Millie Hoskins at United Agents (world).

Korean author Hwang Jungeun and translator Janet Hong’s SAVAGE ALICE, about a tormented drag queen—pitched as a Korean Hedwig—who leaves Seoul and returns to their small countryside hometown and must survive the bullying, marginalization, and tortured life in order to survive; and EVERY YEAR, to Chad Post at Open Letter, in a pre-empt, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in January 2023 and 2024, by Barbara Zitwer at Barbara Zitwer Agency (world English).

Short fiction writer, poet, essayist, and reviewer Jarrod Campbell’s THE REASON I’M HERE, a collection of fictions featuring queer protagonists in their attempts to navigate memories and their consequences, morality, and the silences within relationships; pitched as influenced by Tennessee Williams, John Cheever, and Andrew Holleran, to James Reich at Stalking Horse Press, in a nice deal, for publication in June 2023 (NA and UK).

Pushcart-nominated NYU MFA alum Cleo Qian’s LET’S GO LET’S GO LET’S GO, a debut slipstream short story collection exploring the alienated, technology-mediated lives of young Asian and Asian American women, restless with fear, desire, queer longing, and escapist compulsions, who are far from the dutiful, docile stereotypes, to Alyssa Ogi at Tin House Books, for publication in summer 2023, by Annie Hwang at Ayesha Pande Literary (NA).

Rob Costello’s THE DANCING BEARS: QUEER FABLES FOR THE END TIMES, a collection of eleven dark speculative tales featuring queer characters dealing with queer themes, to Steve Berman at Lethe Press, in an exclusive submission, for publication in March 2024, by Marie Lamba at Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency (world English).

Finalist for the Lambda Literary Award SJ Sindu’s THE GOTH HOUSE EXPERIMENT, a tragicomic collection of character-driven stories ranging from the fantastical to the all-too-real, following an array of loners and artists—a boy with wings, a poet haunted by the ghost of Oscar Wilde, a queer beer brewer, a viral influencer—as they struggle to overcome grief in the wake of divorce, the pandemic, and other significant life changes, to Mark Doten at Soho Press, in an exclusive submission, by Erin Harris at Folio Literary Management (NA).

Children’s/Middle Grade Fiction

Newbery Award Honoree, National Book Award finalist, and two-time Stonewall Award-winning author Kyle Lukoff’s THE GOLEM OF REFUSE, about a Jewish trans youth fighting evil–human and otherwise–with his friends and community, followed by an untitled middle grade novel, to Ellen Cormier at Dial, in a good deal, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024, by Saba Sulaiman at Talcott Notch Literary Services (world).

Young Adult Fiction

Author of THE SKY BLUES and the forthcoming If I See You Again Tomorrow Robbie Couch’s YOU AGAIN, after the death of his best friend leaves him heartbroken and adrift, a gay teen enters an immersive study aimed at boosting his ability to forge bonds with classmates; just as researchers begin to help him form new relationships (and maybe even fall in love), he finds himself wondering if his friend is really gone for good… or if he’s losing his grip on reality, to Alexa Pastor at Simon & Schuster Children’s, in a very nice deal, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024, by Moe Ferrara at BookEnds (world English).

M.E. Corey’s OUT OF BLUE COMES GREEN, in which a transgender teen wants what every other teenage boy wants—a girlfriend and a successful rock band—but when a new girl assumes the teen is a boy and asks him out, he accepts without correcting her; what could possibly go wrong?, to Tamara Grasty at Page Street, in a nice deal, for publication in winter 2024, by Tina Schwartz at The Purcell Agency (world).

Alex Dingley’s ANCESTREE, pitched as Crimson Peak meets The Green Knight, a queer YA horror graphic novel in which a young prince finds out the unsavory truth about his royal lineage when he becomes haunted by a dark creature lurking in the woods surrounding his family’s castle, to Michelle Nguyen at Oni Press, with Desiree Rodriguez editing, for publication in 2025, by Britt Siess at Britt Siess Creative Management (world).

Author of the forthcoming titles HAZEL HILL IS GONNA WIN THIS ONE and NOAH FRYE GETS CRUSHED Maggie Horne’s STAY HERE WITH ME, pitched as a cross between SOME GIRLS DO and Netflix’s The Half of It, a queer love story that centers on two best friends (and recent exes, after one of them came out as gay) who find themselves developing feelings for the same girl, to Rachel Diebel at Feiwel and Friends, at auction, for publication in fall 2024, by Claire Friedman at Inkwell Management (NA).

Author of the forthcoming FUNERAL GIRL Emma K. Ohland’s HERE GOES NOTHING, pitched as a femme queer update of Much Ado About Nothing that finds across-the-street neighbors endlessly feuding and just maybe falling in love, sparking questions for one about her asexual identity, her place in their friend group, and her plans for the future, to Amy Fitzgerald at Carolrhoda Lab, for publication in fall 2024, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Louangie Bou-Montes’s debut DON’T FEAR THE REAPER, pitched as CEMETERY BOYS meets UNDEAD GIRL GANG, in which the 16-year-old, Afro-Latinx son of the local mortician accidentally reanimates the dead body of the boy he had more than friendly feelings for and has to uncover the truth about his family’s necromantic abilities to keep him alive for good, to Carolina Ortiz at Harper Children’s, in a pre-empt, for publication in fall 2024, by Saritza Hernandez at Andrea Brown Literary Agency.

Non-Fiction

Educator in the kink and queer communities Lee Harrington’s BECOME YOUR OWN BELOVED: A GUIDE TO DELIGHTING IN SELF-CONNECTION, sharing how readers can ease the pain of loneliness, heal longtime emotional wounds, and celebrate themselves as complete beings in and of themselves, embracing an all-inclusive approach to appeal to readers of any gender, age, race, sexual orientation, economic status, and disability, to Elena Vega at Twin Flame, for publication in February 2023 (world).

BDSM educator, Lambda Literary fellow, creator of the Image Comics series SFSX, and host of the eponymous podcast Tina Horn’s WHY ARE PEOPLE INTO THAT, a queer feminist exploration of kink, blending cultural criticism and personal narrative to examine how we conceptualize sex, pleasure, gender, fantasy, and power—and how we can reimagine those concepts for a more liberated future, to Carrie Napolitano at Hachette Books, by Sarah Bolling at The Gernert Company (NA).

Photographer Julie Rae Powers ed.’s QUEERING APPALACHIA’S VISUAL HISTORY, an anthology of contemporary images and writing by artists currently living in or from Appalachia who identify as queer, to Abby Freeland at University Press of Kentucky, in a nice deal, for publication in fall 2024.

Performer, co-executive producer of HBOMax’s Legendary, and member of the House of Xtravaganza Sydney Baloue’s UNDENIABLE: A HISTORY OF VOGUING, BALLROOM AND HOW IT CHANGED MY LIFE (AND THE WORLD), the untold history of ballroom—a transformative social space of competition, experiment, and creativity in gender, sexuality, and culture—a driving force in the Black and Latinx LGBTQ+ community and, eventually, of profound influence to wider American society, as told through the intimate story of how voguing helped the author to realize and embrace his identity as a transgender man, to Angela Ledgerwood at Sugar23, with Libby Burton at Crown editing, at auction, by Alice Whitwham at The Cheney Agency (NA).

July 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Author of THE DUKE UNDONE Joanna Lowell‘s A SHORE THING, in which a transmasculine artist falls for a renowned cis woman botanist as they compete in a shoreside bicycle race in this beach-set Victorian romance, to Kate Seaver at Berkley, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2024, by Tara Gelsomino at One Track Literary Agency (world).

Two-time Hugo Award finalist Chuck Tingle‘s CAMP DAMASCUS, in which a group of queer friends begin to realize their memories of surviving a hellish gay conversion therapy camp have been stolen from them; and a second standalone novel, BURY YOUR GAYS, to Kelly Lonesome at Nightfire, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in July 2023 and summer 2024, by DongWon Song at Howard Morhaim Literary Agency (NA).

Author of CHEF’S KISS TJ Alexander‘s SECOND CHANCES IN NEW PORT STEPHEN, in which a down-on-his-luck, early-40s trans comedian begrudgingly returns to his outlandish Floridian hometown for the first time in decades, only to run into his high school ex-boyfriend, who’s inexplicably gotten hotter with time and soon throws into question where nostalgia ends and where moving on begins, to Lara Jones at Emily Bestler Books, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in December 2023, by Larissa Melo Pienkowski at Jill Grinberg Literary Management (world).

Lambda Award-winning author of SKYE FALLING Mia McKenzie’s DORIS STEELE, a comic novel about a pious, small-town teenager who travels to Atlanta in 1960 to get an abortion and finds herself smack in the middle of the civil rights movement and the secret lives of queer Black people, ultimately discovering the transformative power of leaving your bubble, even for just one chaotic weekend, to Caitlin McKenna at Random House, by Alexa Stark at Writers House (world).

Columbia MFA alum and Lambda Literary inaugural fellow Douglas Jones’s PRIME REAL ESTATE, set in Atlanta as the 1996 Olympics loom, following two Black men confronting their roles in displacing Black residents to make way for the Opening ceremony while coming to terms with their own sexuality, to Yahdon Israel at Simon & Schuster, in a pre-empt, by Haley Heidemann at William Morris Endeavor.

Author of CITY OF A THOUSAND FEELINGS Anya Johanna DeNiro‘s OKPSYCHE, a surreal short novel from the perspective of a trans woman navigating dystopia, anxiety, and motherhood, to Kelly Link at Small Beer Press, in a nice deal, for publication in fall 2023 (world).

Andrew Wilmot’s WITHERED, in which a nonbinary student moves to a small, haunted town after reaching a low point with their mental health, to Terese Mason Pierre at ECW Press, with Jennifer Albert editing, by Kelvin Kong at K2 Literary (world).

Lambda Award-winning author of FLAMER and the Little Elliot picture books Mike Curato‘s GAYSIANS, a humorous graphic novel about an ensemble of queer Asian American friends in 2000s Seattle as they carve out space for themselves and navigate friendships, relationships, racism, and transphobia, to Betsy Gleick and Mae Zhang McCauley at Algonquin, at auction, by Brenda Bowen at The Book Group (world).

T M Payne‘s regional police procedural series set in Liverpool, following a tortured and authentic detective with a strong moral compass, who is part of the LGBTQ+ community, to Victoria Haslam at Thomas & Mercer, in a three-book deal, for publication in March 2024, October 2024, and March 2025, by Broo Doherty at DHH Literary (world English).

Fulbright scholar Mary Liza Hartong’s HOT CHICKEN, pitched as Schitt’s Creek meets Dumplin’, a Southern novel about a PhD candidate at Vanderbilt who returns to her small Tennessee hometown for her father’s funeral and picks up work at a hot chicken shack, where she falls in love with another young woman and has to find a way forward for herself, her feisty mother, and her new love, to Rachel Kahan at William Morrow, in a nice deal, for publication in winter/spring 2024, by Janna Bonikowski at The Knight Agency (world English).

Pitch Wars mentee KT Hoffman‘s THE KEYSTONE COMBINATION, pitched as Red, White & Royal Blue meets Ted Lasso, a rom-com about what happens when the first openly trans professional baseball player in history is forced to share the infield with his arch nemesis—a standoffish, super-talented, and inconveniently gorgeous player, to Katy Nishimoto at Dial Press, at auction, in a two-book deal, by Allison Hunter at Trellis Literary Management (NA).

Asha Thanki’s A THOUSAND TIMES BEFORE, a queer literary speculative novel tracing three generations of mothers and daughters—spanning from the 1947 Partition of India and Pakistan through to contemporary Brooklyn—who are connected by an ancient tapestry through which they inherit all the memories of their foremothers, to Nidhi Pugalia at Viking, at auction, by Stephanie Delman and Danya Kukafka at Trellis Literary Management (NA).

Children’s/Middle Grade Fiction

Middle school English teacher and GrubStreet Novel Incubator graduate Karen Wilfrid’s JUST LIZZIE, about an eighth grader whose study of asexual reproduction in science class leads her to understand her own asexual identity as she embarks on a journey toward self-discovery and self-advocacy, to Lily Kessinger at Clarion, at auction, for publication in fall 2023, by Lauren Scovel at Laura Gross Literary Agency (NA).

Rainie Oet’s THE BIRTHDAY PARTY, a picture book about a nonbinary child who is swept off to their surprise birthday party full of dreamlike creatures and magical, poignant moments, illustrated by Mathias Ball, to Susan Dobinick at Astra, for publication in spring 2024, by Abigail Frank at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates for the author, and by Natascha Morris at The Tobias Literary Agency for the illustrator (world).

Stonewall and Waterstones Children’s Book Prize award winning creator Harry Woodgate‘s GRANDAD’S PRIDE, a sequel to Grandad’s Camper, this time honoring the past and celebrating the future with a Pride parade, to Sue Buswell at Andersen Press, in a two-book deal, for publication in April 2023, by Alice Sutherland-Hawes at ASH Literary (world).

Young Adult Fiction

Elisa Bonnin‘s EXILES OF ELLERY WEST, a dark academia YA novel following a queer Filipino-American girl who returns as a probationary student to the acclaimed Ellery Academy of Magic, only to find her past—an accident involving dark magic that caused the death of her best friend—is far from behind her, and teams up with the other probationary classmates to prevent more deaths, even if it risks having her magic sealed away forever, to Rachel Diebel at Feiwel and Friends, for publication in spring 2024, by Natalie Lakosil and Antoinette Van Sluytman at Irene Goodman Agency (world).

Cecilia Vinesse‘s THE GIRL NEXT DOOR, following a bisexual film club nerd’s attempts to make her ex jealous by pretending to date his new girlfriend’s ex-girlfriend, who happens to be her ultra-cool next-door neighbor; as she gets deeper into the charade, she realizes why “fake dating” is such a tried-and-true movie trope—and that her heart’s in danger of being broken again, to Alyssa Miele at Quill Tree, in a good deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Molly Ker Hawn at The Bent Agency (NA).

Literary agent Lee Paige O’Brien’s A HUNDRED VICIOUS TURNS and an untitled sequel in The Broken Tower series, following the nonbinary heir to a powerful magical bloodline with the unsettling ability to find doorways that no one else can see, who finds themself drawn into a dangerous game of cat and mouse at an elite magic university when a malevolent force follows them back through the passages, to Emily Daluga at Amulet, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Jordan Hamessley at New Leaf Literary & Media (world English).

Laura Steven’s THE SOCIETY FOR SOULLESS GIRLS, a dark contemporary thriller with a supernatural twist pitched as a sapphic retelling of Jekyll & Hyde set at a haunted university, which follows two roommates who must solve an infamous cold case of serial murders on campus after an arcane soul-splitting ritual gone wrong prompts another death, to Hannah Hill at Delacorte, for publication in fall 2023, by Juliette Clark at Farshore (US). (Note: this book has already been released in the UK.)

Danish cartoonist Jam Aden‘s LOVE, MISHA, pitched as A Goofy Movie meets Spirited Away, about a nonbinary teen and their mother who, during a contentious road trip, take a wrong turn that lands them in the realm of the spirits, where they are surrounded by trickster spirits who aren’t so keen on human trespassers, with no obvious way out, to Samia Fakih at First Second, for publication in spring 2025, by Jennifer Laughran at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (world).

NYT-bestselling author of CEMETERY BOYS Aiden Thomas‘s CEMETERY BOYS 2, a sequel told from Julian’s point-of-view, pitched as The Sixth Sense meets Final Destination, when a monster starts creating malingo spirits in East L.A., to Holly West at Feiwel and Friends, in a good deal, in an exclusive submission, for publication in fall 2024, by Jennifer March Soloway at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (world).

Non-Fiction

Transgender writer Stacy Jane Grover‘s TAR HOLLOW TRANS, a debut collection of personal essays that tracks the author’s attempts and ultimate failure to write themselves into a recognizable transgender, Appalachian identity, to Abby Freeland at University Press of Kentucky, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2023.

Appalachian bookseller and cofounder of Atlas Books Davis Shoulders’s QUEER COMMUNION: APPALACHIAN QUEERS & RELIGION, a collection of essays that examines how Queer individuals reimagine their relationship to spiritual communities and religious institutions, to Abby Freeland at University Press of Kentucky, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2024.

Ed Emcee Dr. Anthony Keith Jr’s HOW THE BOOGEYMAN BECAME A POET, a YA memoir-in-verse tracing the author’s journey from being a closeted-gay Black high school teenager battling against poverty, racism, White supremacy, and homophobia to becoming an openly gay first-generation college student who finds unexpected freedom in poetry; and KNUCKLEHEAD, a poetry collection which takes the form of a tender love letter from an openly gay Black man to Black men and boys everywhere, to Ben Rosenthal at Katherine Tegen Books, in a significant deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2024 and winter 2025, by Annie Hwang at Ayesha Pande Literary (NA).

Queer artist with ADHD and creator of the Instagram account @blessthemessy Jess Bird’s BLESS THE MESSY, an illustrated personal development book that speaks candidly about inclusivity, acceptance, and radical self-love, and inspires readers to reframe chaos and mess as tools for growth and change, to Veronica Alvarado at Simon Element, in a pre-empt, by Kate Woodrow at Present Perfect (world English).

June 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction and Poetry

Author of the forthcoming THE ROMANCE RECIPE and HOT COPY Ruby Barrett‘s THE LEARNING CURVE, where a bi, down-on-his-luck ex-firefighter joins a cross-disciplinary academic study teaching millennials how to make friends as adults, but an unexpected flirtation with an earnest people-pleasing female participant jeopardizes the study and their hearts, to Stephanie Doig at Carina Adores, for publication in winter 2024, by Kiana Nguyen at Donald Maass Literary Agency (world).

D’VAUGHN AND KRIS PLAN A WEDDING author Chencia C. Higgins’s untitled novel, set in a woman-owned, queer-friendly adult entertainment club, in which a teddy bear stud music producer breaks her own rules and romances her BFF, the club’s highest earning dancer and a devoted single mom, pitched as BROWN SUGAR meets P-Valley, to Kerri Buckley at Carina Adores, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Keisha Mennefee at Honey Magnolia Media (world).

Sim Kern’s THE FREE PEOPLE’S VILLAGE, following a queer punk band in Houston swept up in an anti-capitalist revolution, in an alternate timeline where President Al Gore declared a War on Climate Change, transforming U.S. cities into solarpunk paradises—but only for wealthy white neighborhoods, to Irene Vazquez at Levine Querido, by Rebecca Podos at Rees Literary Agency (world).

Author-illustrator of the LA Times Book Award finalist HONOR GIRL Maggie Thrash’s adult debut RAINBOW BLACK, part murder mystery, part gay international fugitive love story, part meditation on queerness and identity, set against the ’90s Satanic Panic and spanning 20 years in the life of a young woman pulled into its undertow, to Noah Eaker at Harper Perennial, for publication in spring 2024, by Stephen Barr at Writers House (NA).

Eugenio Volpe’s I, CARAVAGGIO, pitched as a postmodern retelling of the bisexual, street-fighting godfather of modern painting, to Christoph Paul at Clash, in a nice deal, in an exclusive submission, for publication in July 2023 (world English).

Writer, performance artist, and community healer Kai Cheng Thom’s LOVE LETTERS TO LOST SOULS, a collection of prose poems promising to uplift queer and marginalized people, show grace to those seemingly beyond saving, and affirm the imperfect yet sacred humanity in us all, to Katy Nishimoto at Dial Press, in a pre-empt, by Leonicka Valcius and Marilyn Biderman at Transatlantic Literary Agency (world, excl. Canada). Rights also to David Ross at Penguin Canada.

Audiobook narrator Travis Baldree’s LEGENDS & LATTES, in which an orc mercenary hopes to make a new start in life, opening the first coffee shop in Thune, to Lindsey Hall at Tor, in a good deal, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2022, by Jon Mitchell at Pan Macmillan.

I’M SO NOT OVER YOU author Kosoko Jackson’s WRANGLED AND ENTANGLED, a gay rom-com set on a family ranch in Montana, where a city boy licking his wounds post-breakup finds himself falling for the cowboy who never wanted his family legacy reduced to a tourist attraction in the first place, to Kristine Swartz and Mary Baker at Berkley, for publication in spring 2024, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Rachel Runya Katz’s THANK YOU FOR SHARING, pitched for readers of Casey McQuiston, following two biracial former Jewish sleepaway camp crushes (and rivals) as they’re forced put aside their baggage to save their careers and work together 14 years later, only to realize that they can’t ignore their shared history or their growing feelings for each other, to Vicki Lame at Griffin, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Jessica Mileo at Inkwell Management (NA).

Lebanon Valley College Director of Creative Writing Holly M. Wendt’s HEADING NORTH, pitched for fans of THE ART OF FIELDING and the BEARTOWN series, tracking a season in which a gay Russian ice hockey player must rebuild his life in the NHL after tragedy and his general manager wrestles for team control while her marriage deteriorates, in a novel about grief and social change on the global stage of professional sport, to Jeffrey Condran at Braddock Avenue Books, in a nice deal, for publication in November 2023 (NA).

Meredith Mooring’s REDSIGHT, a debut science fantasy with positive bisexual and disability representation that follows a blind priestess who powers warships for the galactic military by manipulating spacetime; when the captain of her ship is murdered by a pirate with a dark past, the priestess must choose between a painful life of service or a chance at freedom with the galaxy’s most wanted criminal, to Amy Borsuk at Rebellion, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2024, by Ernie Chiara at Fuse Literary (world).

A.K. Mulford’s THE FIVE CROWNS OF OKRITH series, a queer fantasy romance series, the first of which is popular on TikTok, to David Pomerico at Voyager, in a major deal, for seven figures, in a five-book deal, for publication in October 2022, by Jessica Watterson at Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency (world English).

Sheila Connolly’s BLACK SAILS TO SUNWARD, the first in series in which a woman joins the Martian Imperial Navy to save her family’s waning fortunes but somehow ends up sucked into piracy with her ex-girlfriend instead, to Cate Pearce at Hansen, with Elizabeth Jeannel editing, in a nice deal, in a three-book deal, for publication in July 2023.

Melissa Karibian’s A CHORUS OF ASHES AND SHADOWS, the sequel to A SONG OF SILVER AND GOLD, to Elizabeth Jeannel at Hansen, for publication in June 2023.

Children’s Fiction

Chinese Canadian writer, musician, and filmmaker, and author of THIS CITY IS A MINEFIELD Aaron Chan’s THE BROKEN HEART, a picture book pitched with identity-inspired LGBTQ2S+ themes, the story of a young girl who likes to fix things, and who sets out to help her brother mend his heart after his relationship with his boyfriend has ended, illustrated by Josiane Vlitos, to Lauri Hornik at Rocky Pond Books, for publication in spring 2024, by Emmy Nordstrom Higdon at Westwood Creative Artists (world).

Young Adult Fiction

Author of IF YOU CHANGE YOUR MIND Robby Weber’s WHAT IS THIS FEELING?, a rom-com in which a high school theater star just wants to win a scavenger hunt and meet his Broadway idol on the drama club trip to New York City, but when he finds himself stuck sharing a room with his polar opposite, the snarky loner from the tech department, the last thing he expects is to form a friendship—and maybe more, to Connolly Bottum while at Inkyard Press, in a very nice deal, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024, by Kristy Hunter at The Knight Agency (world English).

Kamilah Cole’s SO LET THEM BURN, pitched as “Jamaican Joan of Arc” and inspired by Zendaya’s 2018 Met Gala look, following a 17-year-old girl who once wielded the magic of the gods to save her island from dragon-riding colonizers and must now save her sister from the same enemy—even if it means bargaining with a long-forgotten god and ending the world, to Alexandra Hightower at Little, Brown Children’s, in a six-figure deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2024, by Emily Forney at BookEnds (world).

Debut author Carolyn Hill’s MASK OF CELIBACY, a 1990s-set novel featuring two heteroromantic ace characters, to Rebecca Sands at Wattpad, for publication in summer 2024 (world).

Author of YOU’RE NEXT Kylie Schachte’s HEARTS OF GOLD, a queer action-adventure pitched as Our Flag Means Death meets modern-day Indiana Jones, in which the daughter of an archeologist must team up with her archnemesis to uncover the truth about a legendary gang of female pirates—and find their long-lost treasure, to Samantha Gentry at Little, Brown Children’s, for publication in fall 2023, by Margaret Sutherland Brown at Folio Literary Management (world).

Nonfiction

Cohost of the Queer Kids Stuff YouTube series and TED speaker Lindz Amer‘s HOORAY FOR HE, SHE, ZE, AND THEY!, a celebration of pronouns and gender euphoria, illustrated by Kate Alizadeh, to Celia Lee at Simon & Schuster Children’s, for publication in 2024, by Claire Draper at The Bent Agency for the author, and by Mandy Suhr at Miles Stott Agency for the illustrator (world).

Professor of history at Eastern Michigan University John G. McCurdy‘s THE PARSON IS A BUGGERER: HOMOSEXUALITY AND THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION, the story of the trial of Lieutenant Robert Newburgh, placing LGBTQ+ presence at the founding of the United States, to Laura Davulis at Johns Hopkins University Press, by Christopher Rogers at Dunow, Carlson & Lerner (world).

Artist, publisher, and founder of Hello Mr. magazine Ryan Fitzgibbon’s untitled compendium of queer storytelling, collecting material from the magazine’s archives alongside new material from today’s emerging queer artists and writers, contextualizing the magazine’s lasting impact while celebrating a new generation of LGBTQ+ creators, to Zachary Knoll at Abrams, in an exclusive submission, by Michael Bourret at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of GAY BAR Jeremy Atherton Lin’s DEEP HOUSE, a pre- and post-Obergefell love story weaving the author’s decades-long, transnational romance into a larger inquiry into the many ways queer couples lived and loved before gay marriage became legal, to Jean Garnett at Little, Brown, in a good deal, by Laura Macdougall at United Agents (NA).

May 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction and Poetry

Cait Corrain’s CROWN OF STARLIGHT, an irreverent, snarky, sexy and queer reimagining of the myth of Ariadne and Dionysus in a galaxy full of monstrous men, bloodthirsty gods, and love fierce enough to shatter the stars, to Del Rey, in a joint venture with Random House Canada, in a pre-empt.

Author of READ BETWEEN THE LINES Rachel Lacey‘s STARS COLLIDE, a sapphic rockstar romance featuring a grumpy sunshine pairing of two female pop stars, one the reigning Queen of Pop who is exhausted and lonely after years of performing, and a new to the scene rising star—after the two are paired together for a one-off performance, it sparks something much much more, again to Lauren Plude at Montlake, by Sarah Younger at Nancy Yost Literary Agency (world).

Scholar of modernism and avant-garde practices at the University of Southern Mississippi Ery Shin‘s SPRING ON THE PENINSULA, following a sexually fluid protagonist as he mourns a failed relationship over the course of two harsh winters, and a poignant exploration of queer life in Seoul in the shadow of tensions with North Korea, pitched in the vein of Constance De Jong’s MODERN LOVE, to Deborah Ghim at Astra House, for publication in spring 2024, by Mark Falkin at Falkin Literary (world).

Grace Curtis‘s FRONTIER, a queer space Western in which a stranded spaceship captain must traverse a climate-ravaged planet Earth to find her way back to the woman she loves, to Kwaku Osei-Afrifa at Hodder & Stoughton, with Molly Powell editing, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Zoe Plant at The Bent Agency.

Paris Review contributor and Iowa MFA grad James Frankie Thomas’s IDLEWILD, telling the story of an intense friendship between two queer Manhattan theater kids post-9/11 at a quirky Quaker high school as they become entangled with two mysterious boys whose friendship mirrors their own, tracing a year filled with backstage intrigue, antiwar demonstrations, smutty fanfic written over AIM—and mistakes, some small and some enormous, that they will regret for the rest of their lives, pitched as a darkly humorous THE SECRET HISTORY meets PREP, to Abby Muller at Algonquin, in a pre-empt, by Ayla Zuraw-Friedland at Frances Goldin Literary Agency (world English).

Author of THE GROVES J.V. Lyon PhD’s LUSH LIVES, a queer upmarket romance in which an introverted artist inherits a brownstone containing mysterious manuscripts from the Harlem Renaissance, and finds both love and answers with her alluring appraiser, to Roxane Gay at Roxane Gay Books, for publication in August 2023, by Jessica Alvarez at BookEnds (world).

Charlotte Mendelson’s THE EXHIBITIONIST, a portrait of a marriage between two artists, taking place over a momentous weekend as her career and personal life take a dramatic new turn, in an exploration of art, sacrifice, toxic family politics, queer desire, and personal freedom, to Anna deVries at St. Martin’s, by Peter Straus at Rogers, Coleridge & White (NA).

Author of THE VERIFIERS and two-time Best American Short Stories contributor Jane Pek’s THE RIVALS, in which an online-dating detective finds herself simultaneously trying to solve another murder, uncover tech companies’s dirty secrets, and keep her disintegrating family together, to Anna Kaufman at Vintage, in a two-book deal, by Julie Barer at The Book Group (NA).

M. J. Kuhn’s THICK AS THIEVES, the follow-up to AMONG THIEVES, in which the protagonist and her band of misfit criminals come up against a ruthless, familiar foe in an attempt to contain the fallout from their first major heist, to Amara Hoshijo at Saga Press, for publication in summer 2023, by Abby Schulman at Rebecca Friedman Literary (world).

Author of the forthcoming QUEERLY BELOVED Susie Dumond’s LOOKING FOR A SIGN, set in New Orleans, about a newly single queer woman who sets off on a mission to find her most compatible match by going on a date with someone of each astrological sign, again to Katy Nishimoto at Dial Press, in a two-book deal, by Jamie Carr at The Book Group (world).

Coeditor of MoonPark Review and mathematics professor Mary Lynn Reed’s PHANTOM ADVANCES, a short story collection following queer protagonists along America’s back roads, to Kristine Langley Mahler at Split/Lip Press, for publication in spring 2023 (world English).

Author whose work has appeared in Strange Horizons, PodCastle, and Solarpunk Magazine, among others Marisca Pichette’s RIVERS IN YOUR SKIN, SIRENS IN YOUR HAIR, a collection of poems exploring the nature of wilderness, queer folklore, and transgressive bodies, to Justine Norton-Kertson at Android, with J.D. Harlock editing, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2023 (world English).

Children’s/Middle Grade Fiction

Author of THE JASMINE PROJECT and the forthcoming EVERYONE HATES KELSIE MILLER Meredith Ireland’s EMMA & THE LOVE SPELL, pitched as a queer witchy Parent Trap, about a 12-year-old adoptee who tries to use her fickle magical powers to keep the parents of her best friend (and long-time crush) together so she won’t have to move away, to Camille Kellogg at Bloomsbury Children’s, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2024, by Stephanie Kim at New Leaf Literary & Media (world).

Author of the forthcoming HAZEL HILL IS GONNA WIN THIS ONE Maggie Horne’s NOAH FRYE GETS CRUSHED, a queer coming-of-age story about a tween girl who tries to teach herself how to have a crush on a boy in order to fit in with her friends—only to realize she might be looking in the wrong places, to Lily Kessinger at Clarion, for publication in winter 2024, by Claire Friedman at Inkwell Management (NA).

Author of MY FATE ACCORDING TO THE BUTTERFLY Gail Villanueva’s LULU SINAGTALA AND THE TAGALOG GODS, in which an 11-year-old bisexual and epileptic discovers that the Philippines she thought she knew is actually full of magical creatures and meddling gods; when she and her sister set out to rescue their kidnapped mother, the girls find themselves fighting a powerful enemy—a vengeful evil spirit whose centuries-old grudge could end the world, to Megan Ilnitzki at Harper Children’s, in a very nice deal, in a two-book deal, for publication beginning in fall 2023, by Alyssa Eisner Henkin at Birch Path Literary (NA).

Young and New Adult

Coauthor of IF THIS GETS OUT Cale Dietrich’s THE RULES OF ROYALTY, in which the reluctant “spare” prince of a small country agrees to show the royal ropes to the American-raised prince of a neighboring nation, becoming friends as they navigate the press, a royal wedding, and finding out what they each want, all while falling in love, to Lisa Bonvissuto at Wednesday Books, in a very nice deal, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024, by Moe Ferrara at BookEnds (world).

Author of MAN O’ WAR Cory McCarthy’s THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO GABRIEL, pitched as a contemporary YA retelling of humanity’s favorite crucifixion, in which an affirmed trans teen has a sexual awakening at church camp and dismantles the retro purity worship by starting his own religion, to Andrew Karre at Dutton Children’s, for publication in spring 2024, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world English).

Madeline Dyer, ed.’s BEING ACE, an anthology of short stories and poetry in multiple genres from contemporary to fantasy to science fiction that celebrate and explore the sub-identities of the asexual spectrum from a mixture of established and emerging YA writers, including Akemi Dawn Bowman, Lara Ameen, Rosiee Thor, Moniza Hossain, Linsey Miller, Ayida Shonibar, and Kat Yuen, among others, to Tamara Grasty at Page Street, for publication in fall 2023, by Erin Clyburn at Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency (world).

Adam Sass’s YOUR LONELY NIGHTS ARE OVER, pitched as Scream meets Clueless, in which two gay teen BFFs find their friendship tested when one of them is accused of being the mysterious killer who has been stalking their school’s queer club, to Kelsey Murphy at Viking Children’s, for publication in fall 2023, by Eric Smith at P.S. Literary Agency (NA).

Author of NEVER BEEN KISSED and the forthcoming YOU’RE A MEAN ONE, MATTHEW PRINCE Timothy Janovsky’s NEW ADULT, a queer time travel rom-com about a struggling stand-up comedian who wakes up seven years from now and has to regain his best friend’s trust, and maybe, ultimately his heart, to Mary Altman at Sourcebooks Casablanca, in an exclusive submission, for publication in fall 2023, by Kevin O’Connor at O’Connor Literary Agency (world).

Sami Ellis’s DEAD GIRLS WALKING, pitched as a fresh take on camp horror, about a serial killer’s daughter determined to absolve him of her mother’s murder; the only things keeping her from searching for clues in the woods where he used to hunt are her counselor duties at the queer all-girls sleepaway camp that’s leasing the land—and the copycat killer stalking the girls, to Emily Daluga at Amulet, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2024, by Maeve MacLysaght at Copps Literary Services (world English).

Chloe Spencer’s MONSTERSONA, in which a freak explosion forces two bisexual teenage girls to flee their hometown and embark on a road trip across the American Northeast, all the while pursued by armed men, mad scientists, and one monstrous secret, pitched as Thelma & Louise meets Godzilla for teens, to Joshua Dean Perry at Tiny Ghost Press, in a nice deal, for publication in February 2023 (world English).

David Ferraro’s THE ALCHEMY OF MOONLIGHT, a mystery pitched as a queer retelling of the seminal Gothic novel THE MYSTERIES OF UDOLPHO, in which a young man on the run from his overbearing aunt is embroiled in the mystery and intrigue of a wealthy family and caught between the affection of the young lord and the apprentice to the local doctor, complete with roiling fog, secret passages, and literal monsters, to Tamara Grasty at Page Street Kids, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Eva Scalzo at Speilburg Literary Agency (world English).

Gigi Griffis’s THE WICKED UNSEEN, in 1996, a sixteen-year-old is having trouble fitting into her new town, where everyone seems to believe there’s a secret, Satanic cult doing rituals in the woods; but when the pastor’s daughter—and her crush—goes missing, she starts to wonder if the town’s obsession with evil isn’t covering up something far worse, to Alison Romig at Underlined, for publication in summer 2023, by Paige Terlip at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (world).

Brittany Williams’s debut THAT SELF-SAME METAL, in the FORGE & FRACTURE SAGA, an historical fantasy trilogy pitched for fans of Holly Black and Justina Ireland that follows a Black girl who uses her secret ability to control metal to create swords for Shakespeare’s company, The Kings’ Men; but when malicious Fae invade mortal London and she slights one of their most powerful, she finds herself at the center of a war that only her family’s legacy can prevent, even as she falls for a boy in the company and a girl wrapped up in the fight, to Maggie Lehrman at Abrams Children’s, in a significant deal, in a pre-empt, in a three-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Alexandra Levick at Writers House (world English).

Audio drama writer Jessica Best’s STARS, HIDE YOUR FIRES, in which a thief is framed for the emperor’s murder in a sci-fi murder mystery pitched as queer Knives Out in space, to Jessica Yang at Quirk Books, for publication in spring 2023 (world).

Non-Fiction

2021 Lambda Literary Award finalist Tania De Rozario‘s DINNER ON MONSTER ISLAND, a collection of personal essays braided with elements of history, pop culture, horror films, and current events that explores growing up a queer, brown, fat girl in Singapore, pitched in the vein of TRICK MIRROR and MINOR FEELINGS, to Sarah Ried at Harper Perennial, at auction, by Amanda Orozco at Transatlantic Literary Agency (world English).

Food writer, recipe developer, and pastry chef Justin Burke‘s untitled collection of highly achievable, ready-to-share potluck desserts celebrating the history and significance of potluck in the LGBTQ+ community, to Isabel McCarthy at Countryman Press, by Sally Ekus at Lisa Ekus Group.

Chair of the Department of African American studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and former Librarian-in-Residence at Yale University Dr. Ethelene Whitmire PhD’s THE REMARKABLE LIFE OF REED PEGGRAM, pitched for readers of A WOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE and HIDDEN FIGURES, following the life of a queer Black man of humble origins who graduated from Harvard at the top of his class and continued his studies in Europe on the brink of World War II, where he fell in love, was captured by the Nazis, and miraculously escaped; offering a lens on the pursuit of dignity and beauty against the backdrop of Black Americans’s struggle for basic rights in a nation entering war, to Emily Wunderlich at Viking, at auction, by Jennifer Herrera at David Black Literary Agency (world).

Hillary Clinton’s former communications director, founder of Iowa’s largest LGBTQ+ equality organization, and foster care advocate Mark Daley’s PROTECTION, highlighting the impossible choices all parents in the foster system face, revealing the challenges of becoming a parent at the intersection of complex and intergenerational trauma, inadequate social support, and systemic issues of race, bias, and anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment, and inspiring each of us to show up for the most vulnerable among us, to Michelle Herrera Mulligan at Atria, at auction, by Lara Love Hardin at Idea Architects (NA).

Author of LET ME EXPLAIN YOU Annie Liontas’s SEX WITH A BRAIN INJURY, weaving criticism, history, philosophy, and interrogating and expanding representations of ability and disability, particularly in relation to women and the LGBTQ+ communities, to Kara Watson at Scribner, by David McCormick at McCormick Literary (NA).

Illustrator Roza Nozari’s ALL THE PARTS WE EXILE, an exploration of womanhood, culture, family, faith and queerness—both in writing and illustration—through personal stories from a queer Muslim woman, to Amanda Betts at Knopf Canada, at auction, for publication in spring 2024, by Stephanie Sinclair at CookeMcDermid (NA).

Tony Award-nominated playwright, drag actor, director, screenwriter, and LGBT trailblazer Charles Busch’s LEADING LADY, sharing stories of the author’s early success Off-Broadway with Vampire Lesbians of Sodom, moving to Broadway with The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife and Hollywood with several motion pictures and a role in OZ; telling tales of his close friendship with Joan Rivers and interactions with leading ladies Angela Lansbury, Debbie Reynolds, Elaine Stritch, Linda Lavin, Carol Channing, Rosie O’Donnell, Claudette Colbert, Valerie Harper, Kim Novak, Bea Arthur, Greta Garbo, and others, to Robb Pearlman at Smart Pop, at auction, for publication in fall 2023, by Tom Miller at Liza Dawson Associates (world English).

April 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Author of THE UNBROKEN C.L. Clark’s WARMONGERS, in an epic fantasy set in a kingdom in a cycle of eternal war, two women—once lovers and warriors at arms—are set on a collision course when years after their separation, one is crowned king and the other vows to kill her, to Brit Hvide at Orbit, by Mary C. Moore at Kimberley Cameron & Associates (world).

Author of UNEXPECTED GOALS Kelly Farmer’s IT’S A FABULOUS LIFE, pitched as a sapphic retelling of the classic holiday movie as a second chance romance, in which a realtor puts her plans on hold again to help with her small town’s winter festival and, with the aid of angelic drag queens, reconnects with her high school crush, to Stacey Donovan at Hallmark, in a nice deal, for publication in fall 2023 (world English).

Arden Joy’s KEEP THIS OFF THE RECORD, pitched as a romantic comedy remix of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing that transforms ye olde damsels in distress into queer women, women of color, and women overcoming trauma, to Alexandria Brown at Rising Action, in an exclusive submission, for publication in January 2024 (world English).

Andie Burke’s COME FLY WITH ME, an opposites-attract romantic comedy about a female pilot and a woman who’s afraid of flying, who start fake dating after the woman saves a passenger’s life mid-flight and then goes viral, to Lisa Bonvissuto at St. Martin’s, in a very nice deal, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Mariah Nichols at D4EO Literary Agency (world).

Nicola Dinan‘s BELLIES, a queer coming-of-age story about two students who fall in love during their final year at university, only to find their relationship dramatically upended when one of them decides to transition, spanning London, Malaysia, and New York in the years after they graduate, pitched as Torrey Peters meets NORMAL PEOPLE, to Grace Towery at Hanover Square Press, in a pre-empt, by Monica MacSwan at Aitken Alexander (NA).

Author of A STAR IS BORED Byron Lane‘s BIG GAY WEDDING, a comedy of (mis)manners in which a young man returns home from Los Angeles to to his widowed mother’s farm in Louisiana with news of his upcoming nuptials—to a man—and the bigger surprise that the wedding will take place on the farm, pitched as The Birdcage meets Father of the Bride, to James Melia at Holt, for publication in summer 2023, by Deborah Schneider at Gelfman Schneider/ICM (NA).

Author, folklorist, and photographer Piper CJ’s THE NIGHT AND ITS MOON, originally self-published, about orphans who are sold to the highest bidder—in this case, the madame of a notorious brothel; along with THE SUN AND ITS SHADE, THE GLOOM BETWEEN STARS and THE DAWN AND ITS LIGHT, in a sapphic/bi romantic epic fantasy series, to Christa Desir at Bloom Books, in a very nice deal, in a four-book deal, for publication starting in September 2022 (world English).

Alexandrine Ogundimu’s THE LONGEST SUMMER, in which a half-Nigerian party boy navigates a bisexual love triangle and is the primary suspect of a $10,000 cash theft in a decaying Indiana city, to Christoph Paul at Clash, in a nice deal, for publication in June 2023 (world English).

BURN IT ALL DOWN author Nicolas DiDomizio’s THE GAY BEST FRIEND, a summer comedy set on a beach following a gay millennial as he code-switches between the hyper-masculine and ultra-feminine worlds of his two soon-to-be-wed best friends, to Mary Altman at Sourcebooks, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023 (world).

Audiobook narrator and self-published author Travis Baldree’s LEGENDS & LATTES, in which an orc barbarian decides to hang up her sword and open a fantasy coffee shop, to Georgia Summers at Tor, in a good deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, by Stevie Finegan at Zeno Agency (world).

Deputy director of the gender equality division of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Iris Mwanza’s THE GOOD BOY, about the disappearance of a queer boy in Lusaka, Zambia, possibly at the hands of the police, and the young, inexperienced lawyer who fights a corrupt system to get justice for him, set against the backdrop of the Zambia’s political upheaval in the 1990s, to Graydon House, at auction.

Isa Arsen‘s SHOOT THE MOON, pitched as THE ATOMIC CITY GIRLS meets THE TIME TRAVELER’S WIFE, about a queer female engineer at NASA working on the 1969 space race and her unusual discovery linked to her childhood in the 1940s, which explores the high human cost of scientific progress and the driving need for both intellectual fullfilment and romantic love, no matter the time and place, to Kate Dresser at Putnam, for publication in fall 2023, by Chris Bucci at Aevitas Creative Management (world).

Children’s Fiction

Author of the Norman the Goldfish series and the upcoming THE HOUSE THAT BABE RUTH BUILT Kelly Bennett’s RAINBOW KITE, stories of love, community, and family, about a nonbinary child following a kite on adventures to find community and acceptance; MONSTROUS MOE, in which a grumpy monster decides if a hug can help him be less grumpy; and MIA TAKES MANHATTAN, in which a cobra escapes the Bronx Zoo and travels the city before realizing she misses home, to Chrissy Willis at Young Dragons Press, in a nice deal, in a three-book deal, by Amy Brewer at Metamorphosis Literary Agency (US).

Michelle Mohrweis‘s YOUNG ENGINEERS, in which an autistic seventh grader, with a love of all things space, finds herself paired on an engineering project with her biggest crush, and both girls confront their messy family dynamics, feelings for one another, and high expectations, to Jonah Heller at Peachtree, in an exclusive submission, for publication in spring 2024, by Emily Forney at BookEnds (world).

Young Adult Fiction

Author of COOL FOR THE SUMMER and the forthcoming HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE Dahlia Adler‘s GOING BICOASTAL, pitched as a bi Sliding Doors, following a Jewish teen through two versions of the summer before senior year, one in NYC (with a cute girl) and one in L.A. (with a cute boy); and MY NAME IS EVERETT, a sunshine-meets-grump boarding school romance pitched as BEACH READ meets FOOLISH HEARTS, to Vicki Lame at Wednesday Books, in a very nice deal, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023 and summer 2024, by Patricia Nelson at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency (NA).

Benjamin Dean’s THE KING IS DEAD, a gay romantic thriller set against the backdrop of a reimagined royal family, about a newly crowned young Black king facing media scrutiny and blackmail, pitched as ACE OF SPADES meets RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE, to Erika Turner at Little, Brown Children’s, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Chloe Seager at Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency (NA).

Author of the forthcoming YOU, ME, AND OUR HEARTSTRINGS Melissa See’s LOVE LETTERS TO JOY CORVI, pitched as a contemporary retelling of Cyrano de Bergerac, in which a panromantic asexual girl with cerebral palsy who is determined to be valedictorian seeks love advice from an anonymous student at her academy; but she’s unknowingly writing to—and falling for—the last person she ever expected, to Tiffany Colon at Scholastic, for publication in summer 2023, by Emily Forney at BookEnds (world English).

Keezy Young’s graphic novel HELLO SUNSHINE, in which a boy returns from church camp to discover that his (secret) boyfriend has gone missing and now he must enlist an unlikely team of worried friends and family to find him; a teen drama that uses the atmosphere of a demon haunting to tell a story of mental health, healing, and romance, to Andrea Colvin at Little, Brown Children’s, for publication in 2025, by Kurestin Armada at Root Literary (world).

Rex Ogle writing as Rey Terciero’s DAN OF GREEN GABLES, pitched as a twist on ANNE OF GREEN GABLES, the story of a queer, half-Mexican teenager who is forced to live with his grandparents in rural Tennessee when his mother abandons him; with the help of his mawmaw and his new friends, he makes an unlikely home for himself at 1600 Green Gables, illustrated by Claudia Aguirre, to Elizabeth Lee at Penguin Workshop, for publication in summer 2025, by Brent Taylor at TriadaUS Literary Agency for the author, and by Kate McKean at Howard Morhaim Literary Agency for the illustrator (world).

Eugene Lee Yang‘s THE UNDERS, a queer epic fantasy in which a group of teens band together to stop a war between the human and the magical world, to Emily Settle at Feiwel and Friends, in a major deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2024, by Jessica Felleman at Jennifer Lyons Literary Agency (NA).

Author of the forthcoming THE MANY HALF-LIVED LIVES OF SAM SYLVESTER Maya MacGregor’s THE EVOLVING TRUTH OF EVER-STRONGER WILL, about a nonbinary teen who, after watching their abusive mother die in front of them, seeks out a former foster mother who once was ready to adopt them, in a mystery about family, grief, and surviving an abusive parent even as their mother’s ghost seems to dog their every step, to Suzy Krogulski at Astra House, for publication in 2024, by Sara Megibow at kt literary (world English).

Edgar Award winner and Stonewall Honor author James Klise’s I’LL TAKE EVERYTHING YOU HAVE, a noir set in Chicago in the summer of 1934, in which a queer teen’s naive get-rich-quick scheme leads to deadly criminal consequences, to Elise Howard at Algonquin Young Readers, for publication in 2023, by Jennifer Laughran at Andrea Brown Literary Agency (world).

Victoria Wlosok’s debut HOW TO FIND A MISSING GIRL, about a 17-year-old amateur sleuth and her sapphic detective agency that investigates when her ex-girlfriend—notorious for creating a polarizing true-crime podcast about the sleuth’s missing sister—disappears too, to Alexandra Hightower at Little, Brown Children’s, for publication in fall 2023, by Jessica Errera at Jane Rotrosen Agency (world). Film: Becca Rodriguez at Gotham.

Non-Fiction

Inclusion advocate, educator, and the first openly transgender D1 men’s athlete Schuyler Bailar‘s HE/SHE/THEY: HOW WE TALK ABOUT GENDER AND WHY IT MATTERS, an inquiry into today’s gender landscape, laying the groundwork for productive conversations about gender on an individual and national level, pitched as in the vein of SO YOU WANT TO TALK ABOUT RACE, to Renee Sedliar at Hachette Go, at auction, by Susan Canavan at Waxman Literary Agency (NA).

Founder of the Ali Forney Center Carl Siciliano’s STRONG AS DEATH, SWEET AS LOVE, about the author’s work with homeless LGBTQ+ youths in New York City and his friendship with Ali Forney, a nonbinary youth whose compassionate life and tragic death on New York City’s streets inspired him to establish the Center and live a life of service and resistance, to Derek Reed at Convergent, at auction, for publication in summer 2023, by Jesseca Salky at Salky Literary Management, in association with Charlotte Sheedy Literary Agency (NA).

Shilletha Curtis’s MOUNTAIN OF THE MOON, pitched as a Black lesbian WILD crossed with GIRL INTERRUPTED, tracing the author’s 2,193-mile thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail and intersectional quest to change the narrative of “hiking while Black” while confronting the roots of her lifelong depression, anxiety, PTSD and ADHD, to Jennifer Levesque at Andscape, in a good deal, in a pre-empt, by Lynn Johnston at Lynn Johnston Literary (world English).

 

March 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Iowa Writer’s Workshop graduate Eliot Duncan’s PONYBOY, about trans masculinity, addiction, sex, family, self-destruction, and the pains—and inevitable joy—of becoming, documenting the narrator’s spiral into and out of his body, and set in Paris, Berlin, and the Midwest, to Mo Crist at Norton, by Ian Bonaparte and PJ Mark at Janklow & Nesbit (NA)

CJ Connor’s BOARD TO DEATH, the first in a queer cozy mystery series featuring a 30-something professor-turned-board game shop proprietor who juggles keeping his father’s Salt Lake City-based board game shop alive, a budding romance with the handsome florist next door, and a murder that threatens the game shop’s livelihood, to Elizabeth Trout at Kensington, in a two-book deal, by Jessica Faust at BookEnds.

Kat Caliteri‘s debut BOYSTOWN HEARTBREAKERS, in which a Chicago hairstylist has only three things to his name: a pair of $1,200 shears, a Boystown studio apartment, and a list of men who’ve broken his heart written on his closet wall; will this friends-to-lovers romance end in a happily ever after?, to Alexandria Brown at Rising Action, in an exclusive submission, for publication in spring 2024.

Recipient of the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters Edmund White‘s THE HUMBLE LOVER, about a rich older man who falls in love with a young star in the New York City Ballet and becomes something between his patron, friend, and lover, to Daniel Loedel at Bloomsbury, for publication in 2023, by Bill Clegg at The Clegg Agency (world English).

Author of THE GOLDEN SEASON Madeline Kay Sneed’s THE BEST DAY OF OUR LIVES, pitched for fans of Maggie Shipstead’s SEATING ARRANGEMENTS, a layered family drama starring an ensemble cast set at a big, splashy Texas wedding over the course of a weekend, in which a member of the wedding party is forced to reconnect—explosively—with her ex-wife, throwing several other relationships into chaos as a result, to Brittany Lavery at Graydon House, for publication in winter 2024, by Amy Elizabeth Bishop at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world English).

Playwright Jeffrey Richards’s WE ARE ONLY GHOSTS, a psychological novel with LGBTQ+ themes about a Jewish survivor of Auschwitz, who after the war, finds his way to New York City, where two decades later he is confronted by the man who was both his tormentor and his savior, to John Scognamiglio at Kensington, for publication in spring 2024, by Matthew Carnicelli at Carnicelli Literary Management (world).

Carlyn Greenwald‘s SIZZLE REEL, a love triangle rom-com following an aspiring cinematographer and talent manager’s assistant who, after coming out as bi at 23, finds herself attracted to an ambiguously gay A-list actress who takes an interest in her career, complicating her already-complex friendship with her suave, nonbinary lesbian best friend, to Caitlin Landuyt at Vintage, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Janine Kamouh at William Morris Endeavor (NA).

University of Memphis professor and author of the story collection QUANTUM CONVENTION Eric Schlich’s ELI HARPO’S ADVENTURE TO THE AFTERLIFE, a coming-of-age story about a boy raised to believe he briefly went to heaven, whose religious doubts and questions about his sexuality start to emerge at the worst possible time—on his family’s road trip to Bible World to see the new attraction based on his near-death experience, to Abby Muller at Algonquin, by Rachel Ludwig at David Black Literary Agency (world).

Lesbian comic artist Ren Strapp’s HOW COULD YOU?, in which a group of college women must navigate platonic and romantic love through heartbreak, matchmaking, and a semester abroad, to Jasmine Amiri at Oni Press, in a nice deal, for publication in 2024, by Stephanie Winter at P.S. Literary Agency (world).

Co-editor of the Cambridge University Press Elements in Crime Narratives Series and Lambda Literary Award Finalist Margot Douaihy’s debut SCORCHED CROSS, the first in a series of hardboiled-inspired queer whodunits following a chain-smoking, heavily tattooed, queer nun, who puts her amateur sleuthing skills to the test after her convent becomes the target of a shocking arson spree, leading her down a twisty path of suspicion and secrets during the end of a sweltering New Orleans summer, to Gillian Flynn Books, in a pre-empt.

Artist, filmmaker, and poet Navid Sinaki’s MEDUSA OF THE ROSES, an Iranian noir steeped in Persian and Greek mythology that follows a queer petty thief and morbid romantic in a feverish search for answers and revenge after his boyfriend disappears, to Katie Raissian at Grove/Atlantic, by Mariah Stovall at Trellis Literary Management (NA).

DEPART, DEPART! author Sim Kern’s REAL SUGAR IS HARD TO FIND, a collection of stories exploring intersections of climate change, identity, reproductive justice, queerness, and family trauma, charting a path from climate despair toward resilience and revolutionary optimism, to Justine Norton-Kertson at Android, in a nice deal, for publication in August 2022 (world English).

David R. Slayton’s TO CATCH A GEEK, pitched in the vein of FANGIRL meets RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE, in which a man wants to reboot his favorite sci-fi show but the creator’s embittered son stands in his way; when the son plots to use his reboot to show the world who his father really was, he learns that being a geek isn’t a bad thing while he learns that meeting your heroes sometimes is, to Tera Cuskaden at Crazy Maple Studio, for publication in winter 2023, by Lesley Sabga at The Seymour Agency (world).

Poet Natasha Siegel‘s debut SOLOMON’S CROWN, pitched in the vein of Madeline Miller’s THE SONG OF ACHILLES, a queer, alt-history reimagining of two medieval kings, Richard the Lionheart and Philip Augustus, who fall into a forbidden affair and must choose between betraying one another for the sake of their legacies, or following their hearts, to Jesse Shuman at Bantam Dell, in a two-book deal, by Tara Gilbert at Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency (world English).

Children’s/Middle Grade Fiction

Jazz Taylor‘s STARTING FROM SCRATCH, about a girl whose new stepsister throws off her carefully crafted coping mechanisms, takes over her favorite activities and friends, and moves in with a cat even though she is scared of them—leaving her to figure out how to deal with a copycat sister and a stubbornly affectionate feline in their new blended home, to Olivia Valcarce at Scholastic, in an exclusive submission, for publication in spring 2023, by Holly Root at Root Literary (world).

Author-illustrator Elijah Forbes’s debut ANONG AND THE RIBBON SKIRT, a middle-grade graphic novel featuring a Two-Spirit nonbinary child who sets out to create and wear a ribbon skirt—a piece of clothing typically worn by women in the Anishinaabe tradition—at an upcoming powwow, to Cassandra Pelham Fulton at Graphix, for publication in fall 2024, by Nicole Geiger at Full Circle Literary (world).

Elizabeth Lee at Penguin Workshop has bought, in an exclusive submission, Playbook for Imperfect Planets by debut author Erin Becker. This contemporary, dual-POV middle grade novel is an enemies-to-first-crushes story following two 13-year-old girls whose fierce rivalry on the soccer field is complicated by their burgeoning feelings for each other. Publication is scheduled for summer 2024; Joanna Volpe and Abigail Donoghue at New Leaf Literary & Media negotiated the deal for world English rights.

Young Adult Fiction

Justin Arnold’s WICKED LITTLE THINGS, a campy horror in which a recently outed teen discovers he is a witch and returns to his small hometown to solve the murder of his cousin; in order to catch the rabbit-faced killer, he reluctantly joins a coven of fashion-forward mean girls and gets up close and personal with a werewolf, all while learning to embrace his power, to Joshua Dean Perry at Tiny Ghost Press, in a nice deal, for publication in fall 2022 (world English).

Author of NEVER KISS YOUR ROOMMATE Philline Harms’s LOVE AND OTHER WICKED THINGS, a witchy, sapphic romance set in a small, magical town, to Rebecca Sands at Wattpad, for publication in spring 2023 (world).

Dale Walls’s debut THE QUEER GIRL IS GOING TO BE OKAY, about a tight-knit group of three queer girls navigating love, friendship, and changes during their senior year of high school in Houston, to Meghan Maria McCullough at Levine Querido, in an exclusive submission, for publication in fall 2023, by Garrett Alwert at Emerald City Literary Agency (world).

Alex Crespo’s SAINT JUNIPER’S FOLLY, a queer Gothic mystery pitched as CEMETERY BOYS meets THE DEVOURING GRAY, in which a straight-laced golden boy and a novice witch team up to rescue a Mexican American teen with a cryptic past who has become trapped inside a haunted mansion in Vermont, to Ashley Hearn at Peachtree Teen, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer of 2023, by Mary C. Moore of Kimberley Cameron & Associates (world).

Anna-Marie McLemore and Elliott McLemore‘s VENOM & VOW, a YA fantasy about a transgender prince doubling for his brother, and a bigender boy assassin/lady-in-waiting, who, thanks to their concealed identities, don’t realize they’re simultaneously falling for and trying to destroy each other, to Kat Brzozowski at Feiwel and Friends, for publication in spring 2023, by Taylor Martindale Kean at Full Circle Literary (NA).

Elle Gonzalez Rose‘s debut CAUGHT IN A BAD FAUXMANCE, a queer, Latinx rom-com pitched as TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE meets Schitt’s Creek, in which an aspiring artist’s winter vacation devolves into hijinks after his family’s affluent long-time rivals challenge them to a bet that could cost his family their beloved lake cabin; but when the enemy’s attractive son comes to him in desperate need of a fake boyfriend, he reluctantly agrees to set aside loathing for love to take down the other family once and for all, to Bria Ragin, Nicola Yoon, and David Yoon at Joy Revolution, for publication in fall 2023, by Uwe Stender at TriadaUS Literary Agency (world).

Claire Winn‘s CITY OF VICIOUS NIGHT, the sequel to CITY OF SHATTERED LIGHT, a queer, female-led cyberpunk adventure, in which an heiress-turned-smuggler and a gunslinger are forced to vie for leadership of an underworld faction after a mysterious hacker turns the city against them; meanwhile, a captured crew member must ally with an old enemy to find his way home, to Meg Gaertner at Flux, for publication in spring 2023, by Cortney Radocaj at Belcastro Agency (world).

Stacey Anthony’s MAKEUP, BREAKUP, an LGBTQ+ contemporary romance in which a self-taught, up-and-coming makeup artist competes against rival influencers—one of whom happens to be their ex—in a cosplay competition to win a scholarship to a prestigious special effects school, to Britny Brooks at Running Press Kids, in a nice deal, for publication in the summer of 2023, by Haley Casey at Creative Media Agency (world English).

Musician Jessamyn Violet‘s SECRET RULES TO BEING A ROCKSTAR, a queer debut about a teenage musician who jumps at a chance to play in her favorite rock band on their upcoming world tour, only to realize her heroes have their own agenda and might be leading her down a dark path, to Peter Carlaftes at Three Rooms Press, with Kat Georges editing, in a nice deal, for publication in April 2023, by Devon Halliday at Transatlantic Literary Agency (world English).

Jason June‘s RILEY WEAVER NEEDS A DATE TO THE GAYBUTANTE BALL, in which a gay, femme 16-year-old hopes to enter the Gaybutante Society, a world-renowned organization full of queer tastemakers, and when he’s told by a gay cis classmate that gay guys aren’t attracted to femme gays, he bets he’ll find a boyfriend in time for the Gaybutante Ball, to Megan Ilnitzki at Harper Teen, in a good deal, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Brent Taylor at TriadaUS Literary Agency (world English).

Linda Cheng’s debut YA, GORGEOUS GRUESOME FACES (and its sequel), a supernatural sapphic YA horror novel pitched as WILDER GIRLS meets LOVEBOAT, TAIPEI set in the glittering, cut-throat world of Asian pop that follows a disgraced teen idol who comes face to face with a former bandmate and the demons of their shared past when the two enter a competition that devolves into a deadly nightmare, to Kate Meltzer at Roaring Brook Press, at auction, for publication in 2023, by John Cusick at Folio Literary Management/Folio (world).

BETWEEN PERFECT AND REAL author Ray Stoeve‘s THE SUMMER LOVE STRATEGY, in which two girls (one cis, one trans) decide to emulate romcoms to help each other find love and end up falling for each other, to Maggie Lehrman at Amulet, in a two-book deal, by Lauren Abramo at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world English).

Sarah Van Name‘s THESE BODIES BETWEEN US, pitched as The Craft by way of Nina LaCour, following four friends in a North Carolina beach town who spend their summer learning to become invisible until their newfound powers start to spiral out of control, to Hannah Hill at Delacorte, for publication in spring 2024, by Maria Bell at Sterling Lord Literistic (world English).

Xan van Rooyen‘s MY NAME IS MAGIC, set at a Finnish school for the magically gifted, in which a 15-year-old magically challenged nonbinary student must save their disappearing friends, to Joshua Dean Perry at Tiny Ghost Press, in a nice deal, for publication in September 2022, by Lindsay Leggett at The Rights Factory (world English).

Emmett Nahil and George Williams’s LET ME OUT, a queer horror graphic novel set during the Satanic panic, in which four friends must unravel a conspiracy involving secret government bureaus and strange rituals, while things take a turn for the hellish—literally, to Jasmine Amiri at Oni Press, for publication in 2023, by Tamara Kawar at ICM (world).

Non-Fiction

Dance photographer and journalist duo Yael Malka and Coco Romack‘s QUEER DANCE, a photojournalistic celebration of LGBTQ+ dancers, choreographers, companies, and collectives across the country who are challenging the heteronormative status quo of the dance world, pairing Malka’s images with Romack’s reported essays, to Mirabelle Korn at Chronicle, for publication in spring 2024, by Ayla Zuraw-Friedland at Frances Goldin Literary Agency (world).

Pop culture writer, video-maker, and queer geek extraordinaire Matt Baume‘s untitled book, which traverses the history of sitcoms from the ’60s to the present to tell the story of how subversive queer comedy transformed the American sitcom—and how our favorite sitcoms transformed America, to Robb Pearlman at Smart Pop, by Lauren Abramo at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Filmmaker and cofounder of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop Curtis Chin‘s EVERYTHING I LEARNED, I LEARNED IN A CHINESE RESTAURANT, about coming of age and coming out, tracing the author’s journey through 1980s Detroit, navigating rising xenophobia, the AIDS epidemic, and the Reagan revolution to find his voice as a writer and activist, set against the backdrop of his family’s popular Chinese restaurant, to Vivian Lee at Little, Brown, in a good deal, at auction, by Sonali Chanchani and Erin Harris at Folio Literary Management (NA).

NYT essayist, poet, and the first out active bisexual NFL player R. K. Russell’s THE YARDS BETWEEN US, which traces his experience discovering his sexuality alongside his career in football as it explores the defining people and moments in his life; a fresh look at masculinity, sexuality, race, sports, and how they intersect, to Jennifer Levesque at Andscape, with Kelli Martin editing, at auction, for publication in fall 2022, by Sarah Bowlin at Aevitas Creative Management (world).

February 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction and Poetry

Haley Jakobson‘s OLD ENOUGH, a coming-of-age novel about a bisexual college sophomore who is reveling in the joy of discovering and being embraced by a queer community—and nursing a face-burning crush on someone in her gender and sexuality class—while grappling with the tumultuous history between her and her childhood best friend and the promises they made to each other long before they realized how hard it would be to keep them, pitched as for fans of ONE LAST STOP and QUEENIE, to Pilar Garcia-Brown at Dutton, by Ayla Zuraw-Friedland at Frances Goldin Literary Agency (world).

Continue reading February 2022 Deal Announcements

January 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction and Poetry

C.E. McGill‘s OUR HIDEOUS PROGENY, pitched as a queer take on the Mary Shelley classic, in which an aspiring paleontologist and great-niece of Victor Frankenstein attempts to make her name in the patriarchal world of Victorian science by creating her own monster, only to reevaluate what monstrous truly means, to Wendy Wong at Harper, in a good deal, in a pre-empt, for publication in spring 2023, by Tamara Kawar at ICM, on behalf of Sue Armstrong at C+W (NA).

Author-illustrator of TURNING JAPANESE MariNaomi‘s I THOUGHT YOU LOVED ME, a mixed media forensic journey into false memory and lost queer friendship, pitched as invoking Michelle Tea and Lauren Redniss, to Michael Nava at Amble, for publication in November 2022, by Gordon Warnock at Fuse Literary (world English).

Stonewall Award winner and Lambda Literary Award finalist Lucy Jane Bledsoe‘s TELL THE REST, about the friendship between a women’s basketball coach and a poet, who are deeply connected by a church-supported conversion therapy camp for teens where they survived and their other friend disappeared, whose missions to understand the events of that summer have landed them both back in Oregon—their paths hurtling toward each other once again, to Johnny Temple at Akashic, for publication in spring 2023, by Reiko Davis at DeFiore and Company (world).

Theodore McCombs‘s EXIT ARIAS, a story collection spanning past, present, and parallel lives, using space opera, quantum physics, calculus, and ecology to explore themes of queer difference in a monstrous world, pitched as Garth Greenwell meets Ted Chiang, and a follow-up novel expanding on one of the stories, to Deborah Ghim at Astra House, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Kirby Kim at Janklow & Nesbit (world).

CCA professor, editor of NO STRAIGHT LINES, and cartoonist Justin Hall’s untitled graphic novel, mixing memoir and historical narratives to weave together San Francisco’s queer history with the author’s own journey as a gay man, to Charlotte Greenbaum at Abrams ComicArts, for publication in spring 2024, by Anjali Singh at Ayesha Pande Literary (world).

Jane Kindred’s KING OF THIEVES, the second in her queer Demons Of Elysium series set in a Russian-inspired heaven, to Rachel Haimowitz at Riptide Publishing, in an exclusive submission, for publication in April 2022, by Sara Megibow at kt literary.

Scholar, critic, and poet Stephanie Burt’s 30 SUPER GAY POEMS, an anthology of LGBTQ+ poetry celebrating queer love, sex, visibility, and joy, alongside expository essays, to Sharmila Sen at Harvard University Press, by Matt McGowan at Frances Goldin Literary Agency (world).

Lambda Literary and Columbia MFA teaching fellow Javier Fuentes’s COUNTRIES OF ORIGIN, a queer, international, cross-class romance centered on a young, undocumented New York pastry chef forced to return to Spain, where he struggles to adapt to his new home and finds shelter with a wealthy, charming, and troubled man, who suffers major shocks of his own, to Shelley Wanger at Pantheon, for publication in 2023, by Maria Cardona at Pontas Literary & Film Agency (world English).

NEA, Stegner, and Fulbright fellow, Lambda Literary Award finalist, and author of INTO EACH ROOM WE ENTER WITHOUT KNOWING Charif Shanahan’s TRACE EVIDENCE, a poetry collection that explores the liminality of mixed-race identity, the tension of queer longing and desire, the difficulty of being present in a divided social world, and the violent legacy of anti-Blackness in the contemporary U.S. and abroad, to Alyssa Ogi at Tin House Books, for publication in winter 2023, by Annie Hwang at Ayesha Pande Literary (NA).

Author, screenwriter and playwright Paul Rudnick’s FARRELL COVINGTON AND THE LIMITS OF STYLE, the story of an absurdly handsome, fabulously wealthy young man from one of America’s most powerful, arch-conservative families and the middle-class New Jersey drama student he falls in love with at Yale, and how their tumultuous, 50-year relationship triumphs against the forces of homophobia, the Hollywood closet, AIDS, and the wrong shoes, to Peter Borland at Atria, in a pre-empt, by Esmond Harmsworth at Aevitas Creative Management (NA).

Tori Anne Martin’s THIS SPELLS DISASTER, pitched as a queer take on How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days; in which a scatterbrained witch fears she must have accidentally given her famous crush a love potion when she starts to flirt with her, and to break the spell, she must prove how wrong they are for each other, all while falling harder herself, to Sarah Blumenstock at Berkley, in an exclusive submission, for publication in 2023, by Rebecca Strauss at DeFiore and Company (world).

K.D. Casey’s FIRE SEASON, a contemporary m/m romance in which a newly sober Jewish pitcher befriends-with-benefits his team’s recently divorced, definitely straight star player; and DIAMOND RING, in which estranged former teammates reunite for one last run at a championship, fanning old resentments and old sparks between them, again to Stephanie Doig at Carina Press, in a nice deal, in a two-book deal, by Deidre Knight at The Knight Agency (world English).

Children’s and Middle Grade Fiction

Author of HOW TO BECOME A PLANET Nicole Melleby‘s SAM I AM and MARINA IN THE MIDDLE, the first two books in THE HOUSE ON SUNRISE LAGOON series, about a blended family with two moms, five daughters, and one giant dog crammed into a ramshackle seaside home in coastal New Jersey; pitched as in the spirit of The Vanderbeekers, to Krestyna Lypen at Algonquin Young Readers, in a three-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Kate Fussner’s O&E, pitched as a queer in-verse retelling of Orpheus and Eurydice, in which two middle school girls learn to love each other and themselves as they fight not to lose one another, to Sara Schonfeld at Katherine Tegen Books, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Eric Smith at P.S. Literary Agency (world English).

Laura Silverman, ed.‘s FIRSTS AND LASTS, an anthology including multiple genres from classic contemporary to suspense to fantasy that celebrates all of the thrilling first experiences and momentous last experiences of your teenage years, with contributions by Adi Alsaid, Keah Brown, Monica Gomez-Hira, Kika Hatzopoulou, Shaun David Hutchinson, Amanda Joy, Loan Le, Joy McCullough, Yamile Saied Mendez, Anna Meriano, Nina Moreno, Tess Sharpe, Rachel Lynn Solomon, Diana Urban, and Julian Winters, to Anuoluwapo Ohioma at Penguin Workshop, for publication in fall 2023, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Shelley Rotner and Gwen Agna’s TRUE YOU, a picture book about trans and gender nonconforming kids that leads with inclusivity, love, and empathy, accentuating trans and genderfluid joy, with photography by Rotner, to Chris Krones at Clarion, at auction, for publication in fall 2022, by Liz Nealon at Great Dog Literary (world).

Rebecca Mix’s THE MOSSHEART’S PROMISE, when a 12-year-old sets out in search of a cure for the mold that’s eating her mother alive, she makes a horrifying discovery: her entire world is actually trapped inside of a giant, rotting terrarium they were meant to leave 100 years ago; now she has only five days to find the exit—or they’ll be trapped for good, to Kristin Daly Rens at Balzer & Bray, in a good deal, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world English).

Non-Fiction

Video essayist and activist Rowan Ellis‘s debut HERE & QUEER, an inclusive guide for all queer girls packed with advice and info about LGBTQ+ culture, relationships, history, and pride, illustrated by Jacky Sheridan, to Lucy Menzies at Quarto Books, for publication in May 2022, by Tamara Kawar at ICM (world).

Contributor to The New Yorker and The Atlantic and New York Public Library fellow Michael Waters‘s THE OTHER OLYMPIANS, uncovering the stories of several European athletes who publicly transitioned gender in the 1930s and who were widely embraced by society until the intervention of the International Olympic Committee; a largely forgotten history that provides new context to the experiences of trans and intersex athletes, and uncanny parallels to the ways we police gender today, to Jackson Howard at Farrar, Straus, in an exclusive submission, by Michael Bourret at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Comedians and Very Gay Paint founders Nic Scheppard and Jenson Titus’s A VERY GAY BOOK, a parody textbook about how everything in history, science and the arts—from sports to statistics to soup—is gay, to Allison Adler at Andrews McMeel, for publication in spring 2023, by Adriana Stimola at Stimola Literary Studio (world).

December 2021 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Em Liu‘s THE DEATH I GAVE HIM, a queer, locked-room sci-fi mystery pitched as inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, to David Thomas Moore at Solaris, in a two-book deal, for publication in September 2023, by Penelope Burns at Gelfman Schneider/ICM (world).

Brianna Labuskes‘s THE LIBRARIAN OF BURNED BOOKS, pitched for fans of Kate Quinn and Julia Kelly, about three women who believe in the power of books to triumph over the very darkest moments of war, based on the true story of the Council of Books in Wartime, the World War II organization founded by booksellers, publishers, librarians, and authors to use books as “weapons in the war of ideas,” to Tessa Woodward at William Morrow, in a significant deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, by Abby Saul at The Lark Group (world).

Author of the forthcoming A BRUSH WITH LOVE Mazey Eddings‘s PINING, a queer holiday rom-com featuring a down-on-her-luck 20-something who wins the lottery and impulsively buys a tree farm to escape her ex, but instead of solitude she finds a grumpy woman claiming she inherited the property, causing sparks to fly as they fight for the disastrously romantic farm, to Eileen Rothschild at St. Martin’s, by Wendy Sherman Associates.

Founder of gal-dem magazine Liv Little‘s ROSEWATER, a coming-of-age story of a young, queer, Black working-class poet in south London, narrating her journey to find a place in the world and discover love where it has always been, to Caolinn Douglas at Get Lifted Books, in a nice deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Kate Hibbert at Little, Brown UK (US).

Bloomsbury Children’s editor Camille Kellogg‘s JUST AS YOU ARE, pitched as PRIDE AND PREJUDICE meets The L Word: Generation Q, an enemies-to-lovers rom-com celebrating queer friendship, identity, coming-of-age, and the unpredictable nature of love, to Katy Nishimoto at Dial Press, in a pre-empt, by Jessica Alvarez at BookEnds (world).

Cohost of the long-running Babylon Salon series Dominic Lim‘s untitled book, pitched as RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE meets Glee, draped in CRAZY RICH ASIANS, in which a nerdy piano prodigy meets his high school crush 20 years later, only now the crush is a famous action movie star and he is still a nerdy pianist; and a second untitled book, pitched as Kinky Boots meets Tootsie, to Alex Logan at Forever, in a very nice deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in June 2023, by Gina Panettieri at Talcott Notch Literary Services (world).

Lambda Literary Award Finalist Selby Wynn Schwartz‘s AFTER SAPPHO, a queer collective biography and poetic reimagining of intertwined circles of feminists, sapphists, writers, and artists at the turn of the 20th century as they fight for liberation and forge new identities, to Gina Iaquinta at Liveright, in a pre-empt, by Sam Jordison at Galley Beggar Press (NA).

Lambda Literary Award-winning author of WRITTEN IN THE STARS Alexandria Bellefleur’s THE FIANCEE FARCE, a queer marriage of convenience rom-com in which a shy bookstore owner claims to be dating the beautiful cover model from her favorite romance novel, but when their paths unexpectedly cross, an awkward situation becomes mutually beneficial—because her fake girlfriend is actually in need of a real wife, to Nicole Fischer at Avon, in a good deal, in a three-book deal, by Sarah Younger at Nancy Yost Literary Agency (world).

Swedish writer and critic Hanna Johansson’s ANTIQUITY, pitched as a queer contemporary LOLITA story, centered on a lonely woman whose feelings for a glamorous older artist are transferred to her 15-year-old daughter when she joins them on holiday in the Greek city of Ermoupoli, and the illicit sexual relationship that follows; a story of desire, power, lust, obsession, observation, and taboo, to Kendall Storey at Catapult, at auction, for publication in 2024, by Linda Altrov Berg at Norstedts (world English).

Iowa Writers’ Workshop graduate and Lambda Emerging LGBTQ Voices Fellow Santiago Jose Sanchez’s HOMBRECITO, about a young gay man—an immigrant from Colombia to Miami—grappling with his turbulent sexual coming of age, and his fierce, complicated relationship with his mother and their homeland, to Laura Perciasepe at Riverhead, by Jin Auh at The Wylie Agency.

Children’s/Young Adult Fiction

James Sutter‘s DARKHEARTS, a debut contemporary romance pitched as appealing to readers of MORE HAPPY THAN NOT and THE PERKS OF BEING A WALLFLOWER, in which an ordinary Seattle high schooler, having dropped out of a band that then went on to become the hottest teen pop act in America, is thrown back into contact with his former bandmate after the other bandmate dies by suicide, and the newly connected boys soon trade their frenemy status for a confusing, tentative romance, to Sara Goodman at Wednesday Books, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring/summer 2023, by Josh Adams at Adams Literary (NA).

Gen Z essayist and feminist advocate Malavika Kannan’s ALL THE YELLOW SUNS, pitched for fans of ARISTOTLE AND DANTE DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE, telling the story of a 16-year-old Indian American artist living in a conservative Florida suburb who falls for her white, wealthy, complicated female classmate, when she is asked to join a secret society of vandals and mischief-makers who fight for justice at their school, to Samantha Gentry at Little, Brown Children’s, in a pre-empt, for publication in summer 2023, by Stephanie Kip Rostan at Levine Greenberg Rostan (world). Rights: Janelle DeLuise

Stonewall Honor-winning author Melanie Gillman‘s OTHER EVER AFTERS, asking what if the monsters, mermaids, and witchy old women in fairy tales all found the happily ever afters they deserve?, to Gina Gagliano at Random House Graphic, for publication in fall 2022, by Jen Linnan at Linnan Literary Management (world).

Erica Hollis’s debut HEARTS FORGED IN DRAGON FIRE, a f/f high fantasy, in which a lesbian teen who can speak to dragons must get rid of the dragon that’s terrorizing her missing mother’s hometown, but falls for the girl who’s mysteriously sabotaging her mission, to Jen Bouvier at Entangled Teen, for publication in fall 2022 (world).

Non-Fiction

Author of REFUSE and Cave Canem poetry fellow Julian Randall‘s THE DEAD DON’T NEED REMINDING, an essay collection that intertwines pop culture, from BoJack Horseman and T-Pain to the Dallas Cowboys, with the author’s struggle with depression and the search for his great-grandfather’s grave in small-town Mississippi, to tell a story of Black queer life and what it takes to come back from the edge, to Hillary Brenhouse at Bold Type Books, by Abigail Donoghue and Patrice Caldwell at New Leaf Literary & Media (world).

UC Berkeley professor, author of GENDER TROUBLE, and pioneering scholar of queer theory Judith Butler‘s WHO’S AFRAID OF GENDER?, a defense of the study of gender that spans philosophy, history, law, and reportage to analyze the social fantasy of “gender” as a destructive force that has incited new forms of fascism across the world, and argues that to oppose these reactionary tides, we must to come to a radically new understanding and affirmation of gendered lives in their complexity and diversity, to Eric Chinski and Jackson Howard at Farrar, Straus, by Sarah Chalfant at The Wylie Agency (NA).

Stonewall Honoree Robin Stevenson‘s QUEER HISTORY A–Z, covering key people, places, and events that have shaped queer history in North America over the past century, with a focus on the theme of activism, illustrated by Vivian Rosas, to Katie Scott at Kids Can Press, for publication in spring 2024, by Maria Vicente at P.S. Literary Agency for the author (world).

Editor in chief of British Vogue Edward Enninful‘s A VISIBLE MAN, a memoir of the author’s journey through one of the world’s most exclusive industries, and how as a Black, gay, working-class refugee, he found in fashion not only a home, but the freedom to share with people the world as he saw it, to Christopher Richards at Penguin Press, at auction, for publication in September 2022, by Albert Lee and Meredith Miller at UTA (NA).

Author and historian of medicine Brandy Schillace’s THE INTERMEDIARIES: HOW PIONEERS OF SEXOLOGY BUILT THE FIRST TRANS CLINIC IN THE SHADOW OF THE THIRD REICH, chronicling the stories of the pioneers who founded The Institute for Sexual Science in interwar Berlin, a base of operations for the first LGBTQ rights movement of the 20th century as well as women’s rights, sex education and birth control, offering a history as well as a cautionary tale in the face of today’s oppressive anti-trans legislation, to Jill Bialosky at Norton, at auction, by Jessica Papin at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Editor-in-chief of frieze magazine and author of the novels SKYLAND and MACARTHUR PARK Andrew Durbin‘s SPEED OF LIFE, an exploration of three foundational, transgressive, and intimately connected gay artists—Paul Thek, Peter Hujar, and David Wojnarowicz—who defined New York’s storied downtown scene and later the international art world, and who ultimately changed contemporary art forever; a book about friendship and death, queerness and community, and the complicated meanings of “legacy,” to Jackson Howard at Farrar, Straus, in an exclusive submission, by Anna Stein at ICM (NA).

November 2021 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Russian poet, artist, and feminist activist Oksana Vasyakina’s WOUND, following a young queer woman on a journey across Russia to Siberia, where she has promised to take her mother’s ashes, woven through with memories of a traumatic and impoverished childhood, experiences of the sublime, her sexual and artistic awakening, and the pains and joys of life as a lesbian in Russia, to Katharina Bielenberg at MacLehose Press, in a nice deal, at auction, by Rachel Clements at Abner Stein on behalf of Marleen Seegers at 2 Seas Agency, for Catapult.

Victoria Lee’s A SHOT IN THE DARK, a contemporary queer romance featuring Elisheva Cohen, a now-sober young artist who returns to New York to study photography after nearly a decade in Los Angeles and has an unforgettable one-night stand with a gorgeous trans man who turns out to be her teacher, the legendary Wyatt Cole, to Shauna Summers at Dell, at auction, in a two-book deal, by Holly Root and Taylor Haggerty at Root Literary.

Sophie Burnham’s SARGASSA, a queer speculative novel set in contemporary North America in a world where the Roman Empire never fell, following the high-and low-born children of a murdered politician as they are swept up in a revolution and race to find a powerful artifact, to Joshua Demarest at CatStone, by Maria Napolitano at Bookcase Literary Agency (world English).

ACLU-NJ honoree and LGBTQ activist Robyn Gigl’s next two books in her Erin McCabe legal thriller series, featuring a transgender attorney, to John Scognamiglio at Kensington, in a two-book deal, for publication in 2023 and 2024, by Carrie Pestritto at Laura Dail Literary Agency (world).

Author of NYTBR Editors’ Choice THE RECENT EAST Thomas Grattan’s IN TONGUES, a coming-of-age novel set in New York City and Europe in fall 2001, following a gay 24-year-old Midwesterner as he gets swept up in the charm and desires of a powerful older couple, examining issues of social class and queer desire, the pursuit of religious and physical ecstasy, and the complicated relationships between fathers and sons, both biological and chosen, again to Jackson Howard at MCD/FSG, for publication in fall 2023, by Jody Kahn at Brandt & Hochman (world).

Argentinian author Marina Yuszczuk’s THIRST, a queer Gothic vampire novel set in Buenos Aires, following two women in different time periods who confront desire, fear, violence, loneliness, and mortality, pitched as having echoes of Mary Shelley’s FRANKENSTEIN and for readers of Samanta Schweblin, Carmen Maria Machado, and Samantha Hunt, to Pilar Garcia-Brown in her first acquisition for Dutton, by Elianna Kan at Regal Hoffmann & Associates (world English).

Hell’s Library series author A.J. Hackwith’s HOLLOW ROAD HOME and its sequel, pitched as a queer, millennial AMERICAN GODS, about a fae working at a truck stop in Kansas to hide from her past, until she’s blackmailed by a self-taught magician to guide him and his sister—a girl born with a changing map on her skin—across the strange backroads and forgotten spaces of the gothic American Midwest in search of a powerful treasure, to Miranda Hill at Ace, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Caitlin McDonald at Donald Maass Literary Agency (world).

Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center Fellow and UMass Amherst MFA/PhD Shastri Akella’s THE SEA ELEPHANTS, a queer bildungsroman set in 1990s India, following a young gay man who, after the sudden death of his sisters, flees his father’s threats to send him to a conversion center by joining a street theater troupe; pitched as reminiscent of THE GOD OF SMALL THINGS in the way it blends the personal and the political to tell an epic story of forbidden love, to Caroline Bleeke at Flatiron Books, in a pre-empt, by Chris Clemans at Janklow & Nesbit (NA).

Author of A TIP FOR THE HANGMAN Allison Epstein’s LET THE DEAD BURY THE DEAD, a historical novel in which the arrival of a mysterious woman at the 19th-century Russian court divides the second son of the tsar and his lover, a captain in the imperial army, when one of them believes her to be a creature out of myth, setting all three on a collision course with revolution, again to Carolyn Williams at Doubleday, in a very nice deal, by Bridget Smith at JABberwocky Literary Agency (NA).

Young Adult Fiction

Author of SWEET & BITTER MAGIC Adrienne Tooley’s THE THIRD DAUGHTER and THE SECOND SON, pitched in the tradition of Three Dark Crowns and Girl, Serpent, Thorn, a dual PoV series featuring a crown under siege, an enchanted well of sadness, a ruthless antiheroine, and a slow-burning romance, to Jessica Anderson at Christy Ottaviano Books, in a good deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2023, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Jenna Miller’s OUT OF CHARACTER, a queer, fat-positive contemporary romance that follows a girl who escapes the stressors of the real world by roleplaying online in secret—but after falling for her roleplay bestie, she must decide if she can be honest about her double life, to Alyssa Miele at Quill Tree, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2023, by Michaela Whatnall at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Author of THE MYTHIC KODA ROSE Jennifer Nissley’s THE RULES OF US, pitched as the intersection between Becky Albertalli and Nina LaCour in a queer YA love story about longtime couple and best friends, who have dated throughout high school only to come out to each other on prom night, challenging their meticulously planned future as they try to disentangle their lives and identities, explore their sexualities, and learn not only a new way to be together, but how to be alone, to Liesa Abrams at Labyrinth Road, for publication in summer 2023, by Danielle Burby at Mad Woman Literary Agency (NA).

University of Cambridge student Sarah Underwood’s LIES WE SING TO THE SEA, pitched as a sapphic, feminist reclamation of the story of the hanged maids in THE ODYSSEY in a YA CIRCE, in which a failed oracle and a vengeful immortal must break the curse on their kingdom by killing its prince, to Stephanie Stein at Harper Teen, in a major deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2023, by Catherine Cho at Paper Literary (NA).

Dan Clay’s BECOMING A QUEEN, about a teenage boy who turns to drag performance to overcome his grief when tragedy strikes, to Mekisha Telfer at Roaring Brook Press, in a very nice deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Brent Taylor at TriadaUS Literary Agency (world).

LGBTQ+ romance and fantasy author Lauri Starling’s POISON FOREST, pitched as HOUSE OF SALT AND SORROWS meets Holly Black, featuring a mage who joins two teens with powerful abilities to track down the magic-stealing sorcerer who kidnapped her royal ex-girlfriend, braving a cursed forest and a betrayal that leaves them at the sorcerer’s nonexistent mercy, to MaryBeth Dalto-McCarthy at Sword and Silk, for publication in October 2022.

Screenwriter and NYT-bestselling coauthor of FIVE FEET APART and ALL THIS TIME Mikki Daughtry’s untitled lesbian love story, unfolding over two sets of lives, 100 years apart, to Stephanie Pitts at Putnam Children’s, in a pre-empt, for publication in fall 2023, by Liz Parker at Verve Talent & Literary (NA).

Non-Fiction

Men’s Health sex and relationship columnist Zachary Zane’s BOYSLUT: A MEMOIR-MANIFESTO, a series of essays told through a bisexual lens, exploring the author’s coming-of-age in a world riddled with harmful messages about sex and sexuality, moving toward a place of embrace and celebration unencumbered by shame, to Zachary Knoll at Abrams Image, at auction, by Katherine Latshaw at Folio Literary Management (world).

Prince Shakur’s WHEN THEY TELL YOU TO BE GOOD, a memoir that mines the author’s many eras of radicalization and self-realization through examinations of place, childhood, queer identity, and a history of uprisings, to Hanif Abdurraqib at Tin House Books, for publication in October 2022 (NA).

Author of A NIGHT AT THE SWEET GUM HEAD Martin Padgett’s PRIVATE MATTERS, an exploration of the 1986 Supreme Court case Bowers v. Hardwick, which Laurence Tribe lost in the Court’s ruling that allowed Georgia to prosecute private homosexual acts (and which was not overturned until 2003), showing how the case ignited the gay rights movement of the 1980s while upending the life of Michael Hardwick, to Amy Cherry at Norton, in an exclusive submission, for publication in summer 2023, by Beth Marshea at Ladderbird Literary Agency (world English).