Your Own Literary Agency

Life-Seasoned Open Arms Literary Agency

My subscription to a writer’s magazine had expired, and I was flipping through the latest issue to decide if I wanted to renew. The annual agent review was in that issue. Even though I’ve decided to indie publish, I read through the agents to see how many of them might be willing to consider me.

Zero. Nada. Not a single agent listed criteria which would include me (or didn’t exclude me.) So, I decided to “create” my own agency. And today I invite you to do the same. Some of you have agents that are excellent, and I am not asking you to criticize or poke fun at your agent or agency. I’m simply giving you the opportunity to create your own brand-new agency, set the criteria, and have some fun. Here’s mine:


S.P. Holly Life-Seasoned Open Arms Literary Agency

Agent: S.P. Holly

Interested in: Stories by writers who have a life seasoned with a wide variety of experiences, and whose stories grab our eyeballs and steal our hearts, not letting go until the last page is turned.

Does not want: Not interested in your gender identity or sexual preference, age, or heredity and ethnicity. And please don’t list your pronouns.

Inclusivity: Everyone is welcome to submit.

Submission guidelines: Send us a great story.


Okay, your turn. If you wish to play creator, please establish your own agency, give it a name, and tell us what you do and don’t want.

Who knows, you might get submissions from some of us here at TKZ.

41 thoughts on “Your Own Literary Agency

  1. Okey-doke. Presenting the J. Ramistella Agency. We hire anonymous part-time interns by the score. Their job is to screen submissions for full-time agents. Interns advance in the agency by nominating suitable works and authors for representation by full-timers, with a bonus for nominating authors who are successful.

    Interested in: brave writers with a distinctive voice, who don’t drink or do drugs. Stories that are off the wall, with a high emotional reach.

    Does not want: Didactic works. Woke characters. Judgmentalism.

    Inclusivity: Open to submissions from humans, even flawed ones. No extraterrestrials need apply. Authors with no platform are encouraged to submit; our ability to market books is far superior to yours, so we can consider self-published books, even if they haven’t sold a jillion copies. Yet.

    Submission guidelines: Email us your 1-page bio, including your public speaking experience, the first 20 and last 20 pages of your book as an e-file, and a list of your favorite genres. If possible, send a short video of you reading your favorite page of your book.

    Secret stuff: [Submissions will be read electronically, checking for typos, vocabulary, and several other proprietary parameters, such as the use of “delicious” or “wonderful,” before being assigned to part-timers, based on their genre preferences.]

  2. The ‘Grandma Literary Agency’. Only women with experience and the scars to prove it may submit. If you’re breathing, it’s not too late to publish, and we want deep stories that only come from decades of ‘seasoning’.

    • Love it, Laura. You will quickly become the agency where “experienced” female readers look for new authors to follow and new books to read.

      Cheers for the Grandma Literary Agency, and best wishes for much success.

  3. Curmudgeon & Crone, Literary Agents. Now accepting stories of wit and wisdom that in olden days would have been told to the village gathered around the campfire.

    Our neighbor across the street, We Publish Good Stuff Press, accepts all books we recommend to them and has a marketing department that aggressively promotes their products so authors don’t have to do anything except write.

    Might as well dream big.

    • Great, Debbie. Love the name of your agency. (I once had an associate whom I called the “Incorrigible Curmudgeon.” He ended up dumpster diving and getting all wrapped up in duct tape.) But I digress.

      That publishing company across the street sounds like really good stuff, too, especially their marketing department. I’ll be sending you some manuscripts today.

      You never know when things will take off. Have a great weekend!

    • Love this “Now accepting stories of wit and wisdom that in olden days would have been told to the village gathered around the campfire.”

  4. Oh! Such an interesting topic. When I have more time I’d like to come back to this little exercise and think about it some more. I’ve often said I’m a very picky reader so it’s interesting to ponder from the standpoint of a fictional agency. Here’s what I came up with on the fly:

    Interested In:
    Historical fiction set in the United States, particularly prior to 1900. Fiction that takes the reader back in time to a riveting growth period in U.S. history as the nation comes together, yet examines the independence of individuals through the eyes and lives of friends, parents, siblings and entrepreneurs.

    Not Interested In:
    • Romance. Historical submissions may contain a romance thread if it is a minor thread in the story. Please see the link on our resources page for numerous agencies accepting historical romance.
    • Historicals set outside the U.S.

    Submission Guidelines:
    Please send us a cover letter, synopsis and first chapter. In your cover letter, tell us why you are drawn to write historical fiction set in the U.S. and what most intrigues you about it.

    • Very, good, BK. You are welcome to come back as many times as you wish today and start another company. This is the land of opportunity. Think big. Can’t wait until you are giving some of the big boys in New York the elbow.

      And about that link on your resource page for agencies accepting historical romance: The link kept taking me to 1906 and San Francisco. Then the link instructed me to climb down inside a crack that was developing in the center of the street.

      Thanks for your announcement of your new agency. And I hope you will open some other ones today.

  5. An exclusively fantasy agency.
    Looking for stories with deeply flawed characters, MC’s who have deep inner turmoil which can but don’t have to be addressed in the story. We love epic storylines, but there has to be a personal stake in the story.
    Other likes:
    Profound family and friend relationships
    battle scenes where the characters show profiency with a weapon or magic
    At least one instance where the protagonist is faced with real death
    Exquisite worldbuilding
    Romantic couples who are compatable and don’t break up for no reason.

    Does not accept: other genres.
    May look at soft sci fi set in a second world, historical fantasy, and the occasional modern day story in the MG age range.

    • Excellent, Azali. I like your reading preferences. I would definitely check the books your authors are writing. Let us know when you publish your own books.

      Thanks for participating.

  6. The Human League Literary Agency: Open to submissions from all humans, from every background, walk of life, life experience etc. Fiction and nonfiction accepted in every genre.

    We do not accept submissions from or using A.I.

    • Wonderful, Dale. The truly inclusive agency. Or, the Anti A.I. Agency. You are going to be a BIG company.

      I thought you might give some preference to fantasy or cozies. Truly open arms.

      Thanks for participating in the craziness. Have a great weekend!

  7. Thanks for a chuckle on Friday morning! So glad to hear
    Does not want: Not interested in your gender identity or sexual preference, age, or heredity and ethnicity. And please don’t list your pronouns.
    Rant over.

  8. The Incredible Moonstruck Literary Agency and Meatball Factory publishes books that people like to read no matter the genre except politically motivated junk, porn, or how to get rich diatribes. Warning: the back cover of all of our books have an American flag emblazoned on them.

  9. Steve, this is a priceless post! So much fun to let go and say it out loud . . .


    Announcing the opening of the Black Hat White Hat Literary Agency!

    Submission guidelines:

    Looking for stories full of action. Spy stories, police, mystery, thrillers. Light romance acceptable, but only if it’s important to the story. Guns and other weapons are accepted, nay, essential in the submission. Not interested in the pronoun debate debacle. Leave it out.

    No Argument Allowed Requirement: The reader must know who are the Black Hats and who are the White Hats. Absolutely no ambiguity on that point is allowed. If I, as the agent, can’t tell who the good guys and bad guys are, then please do not submit your story. There is an agency over on the next block-The Right Is Wrong and Wrong Is Right Agency-to which I would refer you.

    And . . . the White Hats must win.


    Happy Friday to all. (If any of you TKZers are interested in querying me, you know where I am…hunched over my laptop!) 🙂

    • Thanks, Deb. Glad you saw the fun in the post rather than conflict.

      I like the name of your agency and the requirement that there be no ambiguity about what is good and what is bad. I was surprised that you didn’t give your own genre any special advantages. The self sacrifice of the self employed.

      Have a wonderful weekend!

  10. The Pen and Dagger Literary Agency.

    Interested in: Clean mysteries for any age group (i.e., picture books, middle grade, YA, or adult). Stories must have appealing characters, a strong plot, and a surprising and satisfying climax.

    Not interested in: Anything else.

    Submission guidelines: Email submissions only. Send query letter within the body of the email. Attach a 2-page synopsis and your complete and polished manuscript. We will contact you within one month.

    Inclusivity: Everyone!

  11. Cache & Carrie Agency.

    Submission Guidelines: We publish anything you submit, except for police confessionals and Presidential memoirs.

    Inclusivity: All may apply. AI-generated stories preferred. Slush pile? We don’t need no stinking slush pile (see Marketing below).

    Marketing Policy: Our reasonable submission fee of $4,995 guarantees a spot on YouTube with at least a million subscribers. You take it from there.

  12. Hussell and Skamm Literary Associates

    We are a boutique literary agency catering to talented authors of low content books.

    Have an AMAZING idea for a print-on-demand notebook cover? A knack for slapping together word-search books?

    Please send us your proposals for your first 500 low content ideas.

    Guidelines: We charge a meager $25 proposal reading fee. Upon acceptance of representation, we require you to complete our online seminar at your own pace: Writing Your Way To Financial Freedom (Tuition: $1,999.)

    • Have you been studying under Dan? I do like the title for your online seminar. I can tell you’ve studied that subject inside and out.

      And is there a discount if we have over 1000 low-content ideas?

      Amazing how Fridays brings out the most creative sca… I mean minds.

      Thanks for playing the game, Philip.

      • Dan’s agency sounds awfully shady! My agency is for serious, highly motivated literary entrepreneurs only!

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