Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Let's Get To Know JABberwocky Agent Lisa Rodgers

I had the lucky chance to meet with Lisa Rodgers, of JABberwocky, at the recent ANWA conference in September. First off, here is the bio from her website-

"Lisa grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and graduated from California State University, Sacramento, in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in English Literature. She moved to New York City in 2012 to attend NYU’s Summer Publishing Institute and joined the JABberwocky team a few months later. She’s previously worked at San Francisco Book Review and Barnes & Noble, interned at Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency, and was a submissions reader for Lightspeed Magazine. She is a member of Romance Writers of America."

But, I bet you want to know more? Here are specific details and notes I took at the conference:

What is she looking for? She loves romance and is interested in stories with mail order bride tropes or marriage as an inconvenience. In fantasy, she said she'd be interested in a one world government and how we got there. What would happen if it took place on a ship or planet? What would be the culture? A military dictatorship, etc? In middle grade, she would love to see friendship break-up stories. Best friends going to different middle schools and how they maintain their friendship.

What doesn't she want? 
1. Excessive backstory
2. Flashbacks
3. Heavy over description
4. Leaning too heavily on Medieval Europe as your model
5. No chosen one scenarios
6. No funny fantasy
7. No dead mother or sister that acts as the main characters motivation.
8. No orphans
9. No revenge stories
10. No Bullies
11. No kidnapped siblings
12. No evil siblings

Her Advice about query's-
"Know your genre. Know who your protagonist is. Know what the stakes are."
"I don't remember character names. I do remember tropes and different types of characters."
"Make sure you have great characters besides world building."
"Do not force materials on agents or editors."
"Get sensitivity readers from the race or culture you are writing about."

Queries should be sent to querylisa [at] awfulagent [dot] com, and you can find full submission guidelines here. For non-query contact needs, Lisa can be reached at lisa [at] awfulagent [dot] com. Please don’t send queries here, they’ll be deleted without reading.

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