Tag Archives: Montlake

October 2022 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Maori author Rebecca K Reilly’s GRETA AND VALDIN, a humorous slice-of-life family saga that follows the titular siblings as they navigate queerness, multiracial identity, and their eccentric Maori-Russian-Catalonian family, all while flailing their way to love in contemporary Auckland, to Amy Guay in her first acquisition for Avid Reader Press, for publication in spring 2024, by Jenny Bent at The Bent Agency on behalf of Martha Perotto-Wills (NA).

Author of FERAL CITY and VANISHING NEW YORK under the pen name Jeremiah Moss Griffin Hansbury‘s SOME STRANGE MUSIC DRAWS ME IN, exploring the 1980s friendship between a young trans woman and a teen who will grow into a trans man, as he looks back on his youth from 2019, where he grapples with middle-age, the death of his mother, and the troubles of his right-wing sister amidst his own gender-related scandal, to Tom Mayer at Norton, by Douglas Stewart at Sterling Lord Literistic (NA).

Kate Young‘s EXPERIENCED, about a 30-year-old woman whose blissful happiness is shattered when her first girlfriend insists she go explore the queer dating scene she missed out on before recently coming out, leading her to awkward dating mishaps, a few memorable nights, a found family, and unexpected love along the way, to Marie Michels at Pamela Dorman Books, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, by Zoe Ross at United Agents (NA).

Author duo Kit Rocha‘s THE HIGH COURT OF DREAMERS, the first book in an epic fantasy romance series, in which a princess and her assassin handmaid are sent to kill an ancient dragon god, plunging all three into a darkly sensual world of secrets, power, and love, to Lauren Plude at Montlake, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Sarah Younger at Nancy Yost Literary Agency (world English).

Karmen Lee‘s THE 7-10 SPLIT, pitched as a Black sapphic, second chance romance between two high school teachers forced together to coach the school’s bowling team to victory amidst their long-standing rivalry, a group of meddling kids rooting for their HEA, and memories of that searing-hot kiss they shared as teens, to Errin Toma at an unnamed new imprint at Harlequin, in a three-book deal, for publication in February 2024, by Taj McCoy at Rees Literary Agency.

Courtney Smyth’s THE UNDETECTABLES, a queer fantasy murder mystery in which three witches and a ghost form a supernatural detective agency to track down the magical serial killer who is stalking their town, to George Sandison at Titan Books, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2023, by Zoe Plant at The Bent Agency (world English).

Winner of the 2021 Sewanee Review Fiction Prize Allen Bratton‘s HENRY HENRY, pitched as a queer, contemporary reimagining of Shakespeare’s Henriad that transposes the legend of Henry V’s wayward youth into 21st-century Britain, following the troubled relationship between 22-year-old English Catholic aristocrat Hal Lancaster and the father whose dukedom he will inherit, to Brandon Taylor in his first acquisition at Unnamed Press, by Martha Wydysh at Trident Media Group (NA).

Oisin McKenna‘s EVENINGS AND WEEKENDS, set over the course of one transformative weekend during a heatwave in London when a whale is beached on the banks of the Thames, following a group of friends coming to terms with the sexual, political, and economic challenges they must endure to exist in a 21st-century city, exploring issues of community, polyamory, environmental ruin, and housing instability, pitched for readers of Sally Rooney, Raven Leilani, and Torrey Peters, to Jessica Vestuto at Mariner, at auction, in a two-book deal, by Olivia Maidment at Madeleine Milburn Literary Agency (NA).

Adib Khorram‘s Wine Pairing series, pitched as a modern, BIPOC-and queer-centered Sex and the City, following the fierce friendships and many bottles of wine that sustain three gay, Iranian American millennial men as they navigate misguided meet-cutes and steamy second-chance romances, career-altering crushes, serious choices about commitment, and high-heat hookups gone terribly wrong…and occasionally exactly right, to Sam Brody at Forever, in a significant deal, at auction, in a three-book deal, for publication in fall 2024, fall 2025, and 2026, by Molly O’Neill at Root Literary (NA).

Children’s Fiction

A.J. Sass‘s JUST SHY OF ORDINARY, in which a 13-year-old nonbinary homeschooler attempts to find a “new normal” post-pandemic as they start public school, struggle to control their anxiety, meet new friends, and learn about their Jewish identity, to Lisa Yoskowitz at Little, Brown Children’s, with Caitlyn Averett editing, for publication in winter 2024, by Jordan Hamessley at New Leaf Literary & Media (world English).

James Laughlin Award-winning poet and lecturer at Stanford University Sam Sax‘s YR DEAD, a queer Jewish diasporic bildungsroman told through the eyes of a young person as their life flashes in lyric fragments across time and geography during their final act of protest, exploring how historical memory shapes our political and emotional present, to Amanda Uhle at McSweeney’s, with Rita Bullwinkel editing, for publication in spring of 2024, by Rob McQuilkin at Massie & McQuilkin (NA).

Meka James‘s LOVE AND SPORTSBALL, a Black sapphic romance in which an athletic trainer who doesn’t like sports has an accidental one-night stand with the point guard of the women’s basketball team she’s about to work for, to John Jacobson at an unnamed new imprint at Harlequin, in a two-book deal.

Young Adult Fiction

Auburn Marrow’s debut 30 DAY TRIAL PERIOD, an LGBTQIA+ YA romance about two polar opposites who are challenged to date for 30 days to fix their bad dating habits, to Rebecca Sands at Wattpad, for publication in summer 2024 (world).

Matthew Hubbard‘s debut LAST BOYFRIENDS, a coming-of-age novel pitched as Heartstopper meets THE FIRST WIVES CLUB, featuring three queer teenage boys in small-town Alabama who set out to get revenge on their ex-boyfriends and end up fighting their school’s anti-LGBTQ+ initiatives, to Alison Romig at Delacorte, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024 and summer 2025, by Katie Shea Boutillier at Donald Maass Literary Agency (world English).

Bessie Flores Zaldivar‘s LIBERTAD, set in Honduras, where the protagonist must come into her queerness and to terms with her country’s history of violence, heading into an unprecedented presidential election, to Rosie Ahmed at Dial, in a good deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2024, by Beth Phelan at Gallt and Zacker Literary Agency (NA).

Non-Fiction

Author of WHAT ARE YOUR WORDS: A BOOK ABOUT PRONOUNS Katherine Locke’s GENDER REBELS, an illustrated history of important trans/nonbinary/gender nonconforming trailblazers for a Middle Grade audience, illustrated by Shanee Benjamin, to Julie Matysik at Running Press Kids, in an exclusive submission, for publication in 2023, by Lara Perkins at Andrea Brown Literary Agency for the author (world).

Cultural worker and stem cell transplant survivor Walela Nehanda‘s BLESS THE BLOOD, a poetry collection exploring what it means to be a young, queer, Black nonbinary medical patient facing racism and abuse within and outside of the hospital, meditating on traumas both physical and unseen, and celebrating the courage to grieve and the strength it takes to go on, to Sydnee Monday at Kokila, in a good deal, in a pre-empt, for publication in spring 2024, by Katherine Latshaw at Folio Literary Management (world).

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).

December 2020 Deal Announcements

Adult Fiction

Rachel Lacey‘s READ BETWEEN THE LINES, pitched as an #OwnVoices sapphic retelling of You’ve Got Mail, featuring a bisexual bookstore owner and a property developing corporate executive with more than one secret, to Lauren Plude at Montlake, in an exclusive submission, in a two-book deal, by Sarah Younger at Nancy Yost Literary Agency (world).

Katharine Schellman‘s LAST CALL AT THE NIGHTINGALE, an #OwnVoices queer murder mystery set in 1920s New York, where a seamstress escapes drudgery at a speakeasy, but when she discovers a body behind the club, she finds herself caught between the dangers of New York’s underground and the world of the city’s wealthy and careless, where money can hide any sin and the lives of the poor are considered disposable—including her own, to Nettie Finn at Minotaur, in a two-book deal, for publication in summer 2022, by Whitney Ross at Irene Goodman Agency (NA).

2020 National Book Foundation 5 under 35 honoree and author of BESTIARY K-Ming Chang‘s RESIDENT ALIENS, a short story collection that evokes the splendor and peculiar nature of families, the grotesque and wondrous parts of the body, and the wild and poignant battles of queer love, to Nicole Counts at One World, by Julia Kardon at HG Literary.

Ally Wilkes‘s ALL THE WHITE SPACES, set in the Heroic Age of Antarctic exploration, in which a trans man narrates the fate of an expedition as something unnamed and terrible picks off his shipmates one by one, against the backdrop of the pitch-black polar night, to Lara Jones at Emily Bestler Books, in a good deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2022, by Oliver Munson at A.M. Heath (NA).

Helena Greer‘s MY FIRST NOELLE, pitched as a queer and Jewish Hallmark-style holiday rom-com about a free-spirited bisexual artist who’s forced to return home when she inherits her family’s Christmas tree farm, and has an unexpected romance with the farm’s grumpy butch manager, to Amy Pierpont and Sam Brody at Forever, in a two-book deal, for publication in winter 2022, by Rebecca Podos at Rees Literary Agency (world).

Winner of the 60th Gunzo New Writer’s Award for Excellence in 2017 Li Kotomi‘s SOLO DANCE, depicting the painful coming-of-age of a gay woman in Taiwan and the salaryman’s world in Japan; an account of a person’s search for hope after trauma and depression, to Judith Uyterlinde at World Editions (Netherlands), in a nice deal, in a pre-empt, for publication in fall 2022, by Li Kangqin at New River Literary (world English).

Three-time Pushcart prize winner and Stegner fellow Lydia Conklin’s RAINBOW RAINBOW, a collection of stories exploring the complex inner lives of queer, trans, and nonbinary characters, pitched as appealing to fans of Garth Greenwell, Jenny Zhang, and Katherine Dunn, to Leigh Newman at Catapult, for publication in June 2022, by Samantha Shea at Georges Borchardt.

Center for Fiction First Novel Prize nominee Celia Laskey’s THE BRIDESMAID, exploring contemporary female friendship, platonic queer-straight dynamics, and the absurdity of the wedding industrial complex; and UNDER THE RAINBOW, her debut novel, to Cicely Aspinall at HQ, at auction, in a two-book deal, by Jennifer Helinek at Trident Media Group, on behalf of Alexa Stark.

Children’s Fiction

Hazel Newlevant‘s QUEER AND HOW WE GOT HERE, in which the author blends their personal story of coming out with explorations of important moments from queer history to draw a parallel between the growth of a community and the growth of the author’s personal identity, to Andrea Colvin at Little, Brown Children’s, in an exclusive submission, for publication in early 2024, by Tanya McKinnon at McKinnon Literary (world).

Will Taylor‘s THE LANGUAGE OF SEABIRDS, in which a 12-year-old boy confined to two weeks at a beach house with his freshly divorced father meets a local boy and his world is flipped as he struggles find some way to share the truths flooding his heart—things he’s never spoken to anyone, not even himself, to David Levithan at Scholastic, for publication in summer 2022, by Brent Taylor at TriadaUS Literary Agency (world).

Detroit-based illustrator and designer Oli Franey’s MONSTER CRUSH, pitched as BEETLE AND THE HOLLOWBONES meets Teen Wolf, in which a 16-year-old closes herself off from the world after her parents split, until she meets a girl; as the two of them fight off school bullies, the girl accidentally reveals her ability to transform into a monstrous beast, and reveals the world of monsters, to Brett Israel at Dark Horse, for publication in 2023, by Claire Draper at The Bent Agency (world English).

Young Adult Fiction

Epic Reads founder Margot Wood‘s FRESH, a queer coming-of-age story that follows a freshman at Emerson College as she navigates the highs and lows of her first year away from home, to Maggie Lehrman at Abrams Children’s, at auction, for publication in fall 2021, by Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary & Media (world English).

Author of THE DEAD AND THE DARK Courtney Gould’s ECHO SUNSET, following two sisters who, after their mother dies, learn about her mysterious ties to an isolated Arizona town; when they decide to investigate, nothing and no one is who they seem, including the daughter of the town’s enigmatic leader, to Jennie Conway at Wednesday Books, for publication in 2022, by Claire Friedman and Jessica Mileo at Inkwell Management (NA).

Illustrator and comic artist on Tapas The Kao’s MAGICAL BOY, in which a trans man just trying to get through high school as his true self has his life turned upside down when he discovers that he is descended from a long line of magical girls tasked with defending humanity from a dark, ancient evil; with a sassy feline sidekick and loyal group of friends by his side, he must take on his destiny, save the world, and become the first magical boy, to Michael Moccio at Scholastic, for publication in fall 2021, by Liz Parker at Verve Talent & Literary (world).

Author of the #murdertrending series and GET EVEN Gretchen McNeil‘s DIG TWO GRAVES, pitched as a YA Strangers on a Train with a queer twist in which a school pariah meets her new best friend at summer camp where they jokingly fantasize about killing each other’s bullies, until those fantasies become disturbing realities and she finds herself blackmailed into committing murder, to Kieran Viola at Disney-Hyperion, in a two-book deal, by Ginger Clark at Curtis Brown (world).

Author of ACE OF SHADES Amanda Foody and author of THE DEVOURING GRAY Christine Lynn Herman‘s ALL OF US VILLAINS, set in a blood-soaked city, where seven families compete every generation in a tournament to the death for control of high magic; one powerful, villainous family has won nearly every tournament, but this year, thanks to a salacious tell-all book, each of the other families has the means to win, to Melissa Frain at Tor Teen, with Ali Fisher editing, in a major deal, at auction, in a two-book deal, for publication in fall 2021 and 2022, by Whitney Ross at Irene Goodman Agency for Foody, and by Kelly Sonnack at Andrea Brown Literary Agency for Herman (world English).

Naz Kutub‘s THE LOOPHOLE, pitched as a speculative SIMON VS. THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA with a focus on identity, found family, and friendship, following a queer Indian Muslim boy traveling the world for a second chance at love after a possibly magical heiress grants him three wishes, to Claire Stetzer at Bloomsbury Children’s, in a very nice deal, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2022, by Natalie Lakosil at Bradford Literary Agency (world).

Cayla Keenan’s RAVENSONG, the first in a contemporary fantasy duology with Northeastern Gothic vibes, in which a 17-year-old girl is one third of a war goddess triad, sworn to slay demons with her sisters and guard the gate to hell in their coastal town, yet is stuck in high school, counting down the days until her 18th birthday, when her powers fully unlock—until she meets a girl with secrets of her own who’ll force her to choose between duty and love, to Amanda Ramirez at Simon & Schuster Children’s, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in spring 2023, by Patrice Caldwell at New Leaf Literary & Media (NA).

Dahlia Adler ed.’s AT THE STROKE OF MIDNIGHT, a collection of classic fairy tales reimagined by authors Melissa Albert, Tracy Deonn, Hafsah Faizal, Brigid Kemmerer, Stacey Lee, Darcie Little Badger, Malinda Lo, Alex London, Anna-Marie McLemore, Rebecca Podos, Rory Power, Meredith Russo, Justin Reynolds, and Randy Ribay, to Sarah Barley at Flatiron Books, for publication in fall 2022, by Patricia Nelson at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency (world).

Andrea Mosqueda’s debut JUST YOUR LOCAL BISEXUAL DISASTER, following a self-described romantic disaster, a bisexual Chicana living in the Rio Grande Valley, as she tries to figure out whom she wants to ask to be her escort at her little sister’s upcoming quinceanera: her charming ex-boyfriend twice over, her first crush and gorgeous best friend, or the mysterious new girl with the romantic baggage?, to Kat Brzozowski at Feiwel and Friends, for publication in 2022, by Lauren Macleod at The Strothman Agency (world English).

Saundra Mitchell’s OUT THERE, the future-set third and final anthology in a series that began with the historical ALL OUT and contemporary OUT NOW; its contributors include Kayla Ancrum, Kalynn Bayron, Z Brewer, Mason Deaver, Alechia Dow, ZR Ellor, Leah Johnson, Naomi Kanakia, Claire Kann, Alex London, Jim McCarthy, Abdi Nazemian, Emma K. Ohland, AJ Sass, Nita Tyndall, and two slots to be filled through an open call, to Natashya Wilson at Inkyard Press, for publication in spring 2022, by Jim McCarthy at Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (world).

Non-Fiction

Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year finalist for his poetry collection TONGUES OF FIRE Sean Hewitt‘s ALL DOWN DARKNESS WIDE, an excavation of the year following his partner’s suicide attempt, a confrontation with the specters of shame, and a love letter to queer literature that illuminates a path ahead, to Caroline Sydney at Penguin Press, in a pre-empt, by Adam Eaglin at The Cheney Agency on behalf of Matthew Marland at Rogers, Coleridge & White (NA).

Cultural historian, performer, Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in English at the University of Cambridge, and BBC New Generation Thinker Diarmuid Hester’s NOTHING EVER JUST DISAPPEARS: A NEW HISTORY OF QUEER CULTURE THROUGH ITS SPACES, a history of queer identity from the late 1800s to the present, following seven artists and writers whose lives and work are inextricable from a sense of place, including E.M. Forster, Josephine Baker, Claude Cahun, James Baldwin, and Derek Jarman; interweaving their stories with the author’s own experiences as a queer person, arguing for the centrality of place in the formation of identity, culture, and politics, while showing all that is lost when queer spaces are forgotten, to Maria Bedford at Allen Lane, at auction, for publication in November 2022, by Matthew Marland at Rogers, Coleridge & White (world English).

Sibling duo, journalist, and archivist Alison Nastasi and PJ Nastasi’s QUEER ICONS AND THEIR CATS, a celebration of LGBTQ+ icons past and present, and their furry feline friends, to Bridget Watson Payne at Chronicle, with Natalie Butterfield editing, for publication in May 2021 (world).