In a changing marketplace, it’s more important than ever to have an advocate to fight for you when going the route of traditional publishing.
Our panel of stellar Southern California agents will provide a look at their world today. We’ll cover what you need to know to find the right representative, how to get their attention, and the steps you should take to create the strongest relationship. In addition, we’ll look at the ebook factor, transitioning from self-publishing to traditional publishing, book-to-film deals, and more. Come join us!
Our panel of stellar Southern California agents
CHARLOTTE GUSAY, THE CHARLOTTE GUSAY LITERARY AGENCY, has a deeply rooted love of the literary. Before opening her agency in 1988, she ran George Sands Books, a prestigious bookstore on Melrose in West Hollywood. Eclectic and choosy, Charlotte has come to be known as the “Diane Keaton” of agents.
Her clients include author and venerable cartoonist Jack Mendelsohn (Jacky’s Diary and Stuff I Lern in Skool), authors Michael Fertik and David C. Thompson (The Reputation Economy – forthcoming), novelist Wendy Blackburn (Beachglass), journalist Patt Morrison (Rio L.A.: Tales from the Los Angeles River), and novelist Jane Ranson (Bye Bye).
She represents both fiction and nonfiction books, YA books with movie potential, entertainment rights, books to film, selected screenplays and screenwriters.
Her agency is particularly interested in innovative, unusual, eclectic, literary, historical, humorous books and those on any issues or topics, timely or socially important.
Her website is gusay.
PAUL S. LEVINE, PAUL S. LEVINE LITERARY AGENCY, is a lawyer and a literary agent. He has practiced entertainment law for over 30 years, representing authors, writers, producers, actors, directors, composers, musicians, artists, photographers, and publishers, in the fields of publishing, motion pictures, television, interactive multimedia, live stage, recorded music, concerts, and the visual arts.
Levine has sold over one hundred fiction and nonfiction books and has had many books developed as movies-for-television and feature films.
Clients include novelist Sheila Copeland (Saved and Single), author/activist Tad Daley (Apocalypse Never), novelist John DeCure (Bluebird Rising: A Mystery), and therapist/life coach Julie M. Simon (The Emotional Eater’s Repair Manual).
Leaning toward socially and politically important literature, he will consider fiction, nonfiction, children’s, and young adult manuscripts and proposals for nonfiction books. His website is paulslevinelit.
JENNIFER ROFÉ, ANDREA BROWN LITERARY AGENCY. As a literary agent, Jennifer handles children’s fiction projects, from picture books to young adult. Middle grade is her soft spot; she’s open to all genres in this category, especially the tender or hilarious.
For YA, Jennifer is drawn to contemporary works, dramatic or funny romance,sss and urban fantasy/light sci-fi.
For picture books, early readers, and chapter books, she’s interested in character-driven projects and smart, exceptional writing.
Jennifer’s clients include Kathryn Fitzmaurice, Barry Wolverton, Nick James, Samantha Vamos, Meg Medina, and Crystal Allen. Jennifer is co-author of the picture book Piggies in the Pumpkin Patch.
Her website is andreabrownlit.
TONI LOPOPOLO, TONI LOPOPOLO LITERARY MANAGEMENT, has a book publishing resume that began in 1970 in the Publicity Department of Bantam Books.
As Executive Editor at both Macmillan and later St. Martins, she published Judy Mazel’s Beverly Hills Diet and popular best-selling women’s fiction by Barbara Raskin and Kate Coscarelli. Her literary agency was founded in 1991.
She has made deals for authors such as novelist/nonfiction author Sol Stein (Stein on Writing), novelist/nonfiction author Shelly Lowenkopf (The Fiction Writer’s Handbook), gritty Chicano noir mystery-writer Manuel Ramos (Brown-on-Brown: A Luis Montez Mystery), and romance author Flo Fitzgerald (Ghost of a Chance).
She looks for well-written, well-edited fiction: mysteries, thrillers, mainstream fiction with pro-active female protagonists, ethnic writers, including Hispanic.
In nonfiction, she is interested in memoir with a message, family-oriented subjects, health, coping with special problems, topical subjects.
Toni conducts workshops for novelists, and memoirists, as well as offering coaching on creating irresistible pitches and book proposals. Her website is lopopololiterary.com.
BJ ROBBINS, BJ ROBBINS LITERARY AGENCY, began her book publishing career in the Publicity Department at Simon & Schuster and later moved to Harcourt, where she was Director of Marketing and then Senior Editor. In 1992, she started her own Los Angeles-based literary agency.
Her client list includes novelists James D. Houston (Bird of Another Heaven), CBS TV Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson (Between the Bridge and the River), and Nafisa Haji (The Sweetness of Tears); memoirists Wendy Werris (An Alphabetical Life: Living It Up in the World of Books) and Carol Ann Harris (Storms: My Life with Lindsey Buckingham and Fleetwood Mac); nonfiction writer Roger Love (Love Your Voice); and travel writer J. Maarten Troost (The Sex Lives of Cannibals).
Her agency represents quality fiction and general nonfiction, with a particular interest in literary fiction, mystery, commercial fiction, historical fiction, thrillers, offbeat/quirky memoir, history, sports, medicine, current affairs, business, psychology and health.
You can learn about BJ publishersmarketplace.com/members/bjrobbins/.
LEE JESSUP, screenwriting career coach specializes in guiding aspiring and professional scribes toward long-standing and prolific screenwriting careers.
Her coaching clients include Golden Globe and Emmy nominees, best-selling authors, sold and produced WGA members, as well as writers just starting out.
Her national “Business of Screenwriting” seminar was sponsored by The New York Times and launched in cooperation with Final Draft, and her book “What To Expect… Launching Your Screenwriting Career” will be published in early 2014 by Michael Wiese Productions.
Her website is LeeJessup.com
ROBIN QUINN, is an award-winning book editor, book coach, and ghostwriter. She specializes in health, nutrition, self-help, spirituality, business, and the media, and she also works with fiction and memoir.
Quinn has been in the book publishing business for more than two decades and regularly produces and moderates book panels.
Her editorial projects include the small press best-seller The Detox Solution by health coach Patricia Fitzgerald, the award-winning The Food Is My Friend Diet by dietitian Ruth Frechman, the inspirational The Conscious Catwoman Explains Life on Earth by actress Julie Newmar (Catwoman on the TV series Batman), and the metaphysical novel Ultimaya 1.0: The Trouble with the Wishes of Leopold Stokes by spiritual advisor Saniel Bonder.
Robin’s website is writingandediting.biz.