My publishing journey was incubated by childhood experiences. My mother, an artistic woman and voracious reader, instilled in me a passion for music, reading, and writing. She bought me loads of books, and she would often sit patiently with me as I read aloud, fumbling through sentences. When I was eight-years-old, Mom created an enduring experience for me on a cold Thanksgiving afternoon. She and my father were preparing dinner while a medley of Tom Jones, Neil Diamond, and Engelbert Humperdinck albums spun on a stereo, and I was getting in the way by playing in the kitchen. To keep me occupied, Mom retrieved an old typewriter, paper, and a bottle of White-Out, and she asked me to write a story. Over the next hour, I typed—using two fingers—a poorly constructed tale. But when my relatives arrived for dinner, I managed to sell my literary masterpiece, damp with correction fluid, to my Uncle John for twenty-five cents. I have my mother to thank for this wonderful memory. And as I look back, I think I could have gotten a better deal if I’d had an agent.
Christopher Hinz won the Compton Crook award for best first novel and was nominated for the John W. Campbell award for best new writer for Liege-Killer. From a forested realm near Reading, PA, he crafts stories in a range of media: screenplay adaptations, short stories, graphic novels, comics for DC and Marvel. His seventh prose novel, Starship Alchemon, launches in November.
As an author, I often receive questions from writers and students about literary agents. Specifically, how to find a literary agent. Up until recently, I would respond by launching into a discussion about query letters and book synopses, writers forums and agent wish lists, proposals and comparison books, etc., etc.
Now, I tell them what I wish I could tell my younger self: it's not about simply finding a literary agent. It's about finding the right agent for you.
I got the chance to sit down with two authors who have a surprisingly optimistic view about politics and democracy. John Gastil is a professor at Penn State, and Katie Knobloch is an assistant professor at Colorado State University. They have collaborated on research for more than a decade, and Hope for Democracy: How Citizens Can Bring Reason Back Into Politics, forthcoming from Oxford University Press, is their first book together.
Holly Chisholm is the artist of Just Peachy comics, which Booklist has called "thoughtful and poignant." Her popular Instagram account for Just Peachy comics was her compromise between drawing and journaling; it helped her record how she was feeling at the time of being diagnosed with depression and work through some of the darkness. At first it was scary to put her deepest thoughts and fears out in the open, but the responses and messages of support from droves of fans made Chisholm realize how much it was needed to talk about mental health. After about six months of making these comics, she decided to quit her job and freelance part time so that she could dedicate more time to making and promoting Just Peachy. In the future, Chisholm is hoping to make another book, and would love to be able to do this full-time, while raising awareness about mental health and her personal struggle with depression.
Rather than give up a love affair with words, old writers, with decades of footprints in the book trade, simply change genres, refurbish stories, and stay delightfully crazy.
My falling in love with storytelling happened at nap time in my grandmother’s bed. It was some time in the year of 1949. She fell asleep in the midst of reading a story. I did not, and poked her with my elbow to get her voice going again, a voice honed on decades of reading the Bible aloud, with its old-world rhythms. Since my grandmother seemed to worry that I would be the first female in our family to go to prison, she dropped me off each Sunday in her church’s Children’s Class. There, I heard Bible stories that were older even than my grandmother, a realization that led me to my first profound thought: if stories could last so long, they must be something we need. Like air, food and water—or a good purse.
Tina LeCount Myers is a writer, artist, independent historian, and surfer. Born in Mexico to expat-bohemian parents, she grew up on Southern California tennis courts with a prophecy hanging over her head; her parents hoped she'd one day be an author. Tina lives in San Francisco with her adventurer husband and loud Siamese cat. The Song of All is the first book of the epic fantasy trilogy The Legacy of the Heavens. Her latest book from the trilogy, Dreams of the Dark Sky, publishes February 2019 from Night Shade Books.
I had the pleasure to sit down with Inc. Magazine’s columnist Dakona Shane to discuss the process of entrepreneurs getting published, prior to his article Ever Thought About Pursuing a Book Deal? Here's How to Get Started …here’s what he asked me and what we discussed in this Mark Gottlieb Agent interview.
Michael Mejer is an established, trusted digital marketing expert in the non-fiction business book space. The culmination of years of experience in publicity, marketing, and sales in this niche has empowered him to help dozens of authors take their social media platforms to the next level to help promote and grow their books, brands, and businesses.
Andrew Buckley is an editor for a small press, a professional copy and content writer, and a cohost for a geek movie podcast. He is the author of The Perils of Growing Up Werewolf series. His forthcoming book is The Fate of Freddy Mitchell, book one in the Dead Kid Chronicles, about when the fates of the underworld fail to capture a young soul at his scheduled time of death, and the very fabric of the universe begins to unravel—while the fates scramble to correct their mistake, he is forced to deal with a chatty crow, dark and sinister creatures hunting him through the night, a murderous gang of soul hunters, and the fact that he no longer appears to be as alive as he used to be. Andrew now lives happily in the Okanagan Valley, BC with one beautiful wife, three kids, one cat, one needy dog, and a multitude of characters that live comfortably inside of his mind.
Literary Agent at Trident Media Group
My name is Mark Gottlieb and I am a literary agent at book publishing’s leading literary agency, Trident Media Group in New York City. I attended Emerson College and was President of its Publishing Club, establishing the Wilde Press. After graduating with a degree in writing, literature & publishing, I began my career with Penguin’s VP. My first position at Trident Media Group, was in foreign rights. I was EA to TMG’s Chairman and ran the Audio Department. I am currently working with my own client list, helping to manage and grow author careers with the unique resources available to TMG. I have ranked highly in our industry among literary agents in overall deals and other categories.