Are you a historical fiction writer seeking to be published traditionally? If you are looking to approach a good publisher, then having a literary agent to negotiate the best publishing contract should be at the top of your list.
We’ve compiled a list of ten top literary agents for historical fiction to help kickstart your search. The list is, however, not in any particular order. Let’s dive right in.
Karolina Sutton is an agent with the London-based literary agency, Curtis Brown. She has represented numerous bestselling and award-winning writers, including Siri Hustvedt, Haruki Murakami, Malala Yousafzai, and more.
Karolina has a proven track record of building her clients' careers. She's known to have a hands-on approach to helping her writers grow their careers.
She is mainly seeking to represent historical and contemporary fiction. Even though she primarily inclines towards the literary end of the scope, Karolina enjoys thrillers, crimes, and book club fiction. Her historical fiction clients include LP Fergusson (A Dangerous Act of Kindness), Helen Scarlett (The Deception of Harriet Fleet), and
Imogen Hermes Gowar (The Mermaid & Mrs Hancock).
If you are interested in being represented by Sutton, you can query her by filling out the agency's submission form. Ensure to name her as your preferred agent.
Albert has been the founder and owner of Writers House since 1973. He has decades of experience working with famous personalities like Stephen Hawking, Karen Pryor and Michael Lewis.
He has also authored a book—a guide on how to write fiction called, Writing the Blockbuster Novel. Albert loves historical fiction and leans towards women's stories with commercial interest.
He believes in offering his expertise in negotiating contracts and providing his clients with editorial and marketing advice. He is hands-on in developing and managing his clients' careers.
You can send your query letter to Writers House LLC 120 Broadway, 22nd Floor New York, NY 10271 and address it precisely to him.
The letter should include:
- Your credentials
- A synopsis of your book
- A brief description of what makes your book unique.
Your mail should include a SASE.
Writers House LLC 120 Broadway, 22nd Floor New York, NY 10271
Jill has been in the publishing industry for over 20 years, representing huge names in fiction and nonfiction. She is the founder and president of Jill Grinberg Literary Management.
After completing her bachelor of arts degree in English literature, Jill worked at HarperCollins with high-profile authors. She has represented award-winning books and bestsellers such as Care of the Soul, Thomas Moore's #1NewYork Times bestseller and Comes to Me, Amy Bloom's National Book Award finalist.
Jill is open to representing both literary and historical fiction.
Jill's agency is open to submissions in all categories; adult fiction and nonfiction and children's fiction and nonfiction. You'll address your query to email@example.com.
Your email subject line should adhere to the following format: QUERY: Title of Project by Your Name / Your Book's Age Category and Genre / ATTN: Name of Agent.
The query letter should be pasted into the body of the email, and the book proposal or sample pages be attached as a docx file.
Learn more about individual submission guidelines for fiction, nonfiction, picture books, graphic novels and illustration books here.
Jill Grinberg Literary Management LLC 392 Vanderbilt Avenue | Brooklyn, NY 11238
Daniel is another literary agent working at Writers House. He mainly adores historical fiction and represents adults' and children's books.
Daniel has made a name for himself over the 19 years he has been in the industry. He has represented hundreds of projects and particularly names Richard Harvell's novel, The Bells, as his best. Daniel is interested in projects about the American Civil war, WWI and II, French Revolution and the Tudor era. Still, he can represent any other project with solid characters and exciting plots.
You can find Daniel on Instagram @DanLazarAgent, where he posts about his authors, what he's reading, and life outside work.
Daniel is actively looking to represent new authors. You can submit your query letter by email at dlazar@WritersHouse.com. The body of the query letter should include the first five pages of your manuscript. Do not send any attachments unless requested. You can, however, send a link to your sample pages if your project is highly illustrated.
Besides email, you can send your submission via regular mail to Writers House, 21 West 26th Street, New York, NY 10010. Ensure to address Daniel specifically in the letter.
Jennifer Jackson is a Brooklyn-based agent working with Donald Maass Literary Agency since 1993. She is the current vice president of the firm.
She grew up reading science fiction and fantasy, a genre she continues to endorse. Jennifer initiated the agency's extension into the scope of women's fiction and her genres into thriller and suspense.
She is the name behind the success of numerous bestselling and award-winning authors, including New York Times best-selling fantasy writer Jim Butcher, Hugo Award-winning science fiction author Elizabeth Bear, USA Today best-selling author Anne Bishop and New York Times bestseller Kim Harrison, among others.
The agency only accepts queries via email.
Compose a query letter to firstname.lastname@example.org. It should include a 1-2 page long synopsis and the first five pages of your manuscript. Also, ensure to indicate the genre and word count of your project.
All these should be pasted into the email of the body and not sent as an attachment.
Kristin Nelson is the founder and president of the Denver-based Nelson Literary Agency. She believes in helping all her clients make a living solely from what they love best – writing. True to her word, 90% of her clients live off writing.
Kristin founded NLA in 2002, and since then, she has represented over fifty New York Times bestsellers and numerous USA Today bestsellers. She's referred to as "a hardworking bulldog agent that will fight for you" by her fellow agents.
She represents top-tier historical fiction authors. Just so you know, she's the name behind The Luckiest lady in London by Sherry Thomas, a well-celebrated romance author. Kristin represents both literary and commercial fiction.
When not selling books, you'll find her playing tennis, pickle ball or golf, or hiking in the mountains with her husband.
You can send your query letter to email@example.com. In the submission, ensure to include;
- A short bio including your writing credentials
- The title, word count and genre of your project
- First ten pages of your manuscript
Eleanor Wood is the founder and director at Spectrum Literary Agency. She started the agency in 1976 and has built a name for herself as the most experienced commercial fiction agent.
The M.A. holder from Bryn Mewr College has represented authors from multiple genres, including Steve Barnes, Claudia Bishop and many more. Eleanor and her agency seek to represent historical fiction in any category; thrillers, suspense, mystery, romance, you name it!
Eleanor and her agency accept submissions sent by mail only. If interested, send a query letter with an obligatory SASE. Letters without SASE will not be answered.
The letter should include the following elements;
- Brief description of your book
- Publishing credentials
- Work background
- First ten pages of your book.
Eleanor Wood, Spectrum Literary Agency, 320 Central Park West Suite 1-D, New York, NY 10025
Theresa ditched being an attorney to pursue her happiness - being a literary agent. She started her agency in 2005, The Park and Fine Literary and Media, in New York City.
She continues to represent some of the most celebrated names, including Debbie Macomber, Emily Giffin and Robert Whitaker. Her lists mainly include commercial fiction and a few serious nonfiction.
Theresa is a graduate of Harvard Law School and U.C. Santa Cruz. Her diversified educational background makes her a uniquely liberal business associate. She is multilingual. She is fluent in German and English and can speak French and Japanese.
The agency accepts submissions sent via email only to firstname.lastname@example.org. The email's subject line should specify the agent's full name and the genre of your project, e.g. Theresa Park - Adult nonfiction.
For adult fiction submission, include a query letter and the first 25 pages of your book. For Y.A. and children's fiction, incorporate a query letter and the book's first chapter or ten pages. For nonfiction submissions, send a query letter only.
All the materials should be in the email body and not as attachments.
Kevan has over 25 years of experience in the publishing business, a little over ten years as an agent and 17+ years on the sales and distribution side of the business.
She is the co-founder of Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. Kevan is hands-on with helping her authors get published and build life-long careers out of writing. Her history in the retail aspect of business has enriched her with insights on what kinds of books will do well and how to market them.
Kevan represents authors in a broad spectrum of genres, including romance, historical fiction, mystery, and literary and commercial fiction. She also deals with women's fiction, prioritizing commercial women's fiction. She has represented numerous bestsellers internationally as well as New York Times and USA Today.
You can query Kevan by filling out this form. Upon submitting your query, you will receive a customized link to a particular page which you can visit anytime you want to check your query status.
Marsal Lyon Literary Agency LLC PMB 121 665 San Rodolfo Dr. 124 Solana Beach, CA 92075
Nancy Yost had worked as a literary agent for over 15 years before starting her firm, Nancy Yost Literary Agency (NYLA), in 2009. She started her career at Random House and then joined Avon Books in an editorial position.
Nancy primarily represents commercial fiction in various genres, including:
- crime novels (suspense, mysteries, thrillers—both contemporary and historical)
- women's fiction (historical romance, accessible upmarket fiction, book club reads, romantic comedies, etc.)
- urban fantasy/paranormal
Many of her authors are NYT, USAT, and international bestsellers, such as Beverly Jenkins, Deborah Crombie, Linda Castillo, Loretta Chase, and Victoria Thompson.
To query Nancy, you'll simply fill out this comprehensive form. You can alternatively send the query letter via mail to 27th St., Suite 1201 New York, New York 10001.
121 West 27th St., Suite 1201 New York, New York 10001.