Thursday, October 16, 2014

Agents Like Us - Christa Heschke

I'm posting an agent interview bonus this week! Christa Heschke from McIntosh & Otis is here!

She is looking for picture books, middle grade, and young adult projects. You can read more about her here and here, see her submission guidelines there, and follow her on Twitter @ChristaHeschke. Her answers are below in bold.

Christa on Agenting

  • When writers query me, I really wish ...They’d do their research--meaning sending projects that are in genres and age groups I’m looking for. Also, tell me why you’re querying me specifically and know your story’s hook! What do you see it sitting next to on the shelf?
  • My favorite part about being an agent is ...Everything! Can I say that? :) I especially love client interaction and editorial work!
  • Rules and trends aside, what I really look for in a story is ...A compelling voice and a premise I haven’t seen quite done that way before. I love books that take risks, whether it be telling the story from a unique POV, utilizing a unique structure or pushing genre boundaries. I also love a good twist a la We Were Liars or Gone Girl. 
  • Whenever I make a book deal, I ...Am super excited to tell the client the good news!
  • I really wish I saw more middle grade of all types, especially contemporary, mysteries for YA and MG, lighter, funny YA in the slush. 

Christa On Clients
  • My ideal client would be ...Someone who is dedicated to their craft and is willing to work hard. It’s often tough breaking in and getting that first book deal, so one should be willing to revise and take constructive criticism well. It’s hard to be in this industry if you take rejection too personally. Some of the greatest books were rejected dozens of times before being sold. It’s all about finding that right editor who will get your project and be passionate about getting it out to readers. 
  • What I love most about my current clientele is ...Their dedication. They are true writers. They are always writing new things and coming up with new ideas. They are also team players---they know we’re a team and support each other!
  • What I want most for any client is ...To sell their projects, build them a writing career and help them to become the best writers they can be. I love brainstorming and working on editorial work. There’s almost nothing better than watching a good writer grow and become a great writer!

Christa On Life
  • If I weren't an agent, I'd probably be ...A marine biologist, dolphin trainer or teacher. 
  • My favorite (non-client) book is ...The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson. 
  • Secretly, I'm terrified of ...the zombie apocalypse. I have an overactive imagination and probably watch too many horror movies!
  • My secret boyfriend is ...Eric Northman from True Blood, Channing Tatum, or Captain Hook from Once Upon Time (TV show). If only….lol.
  • I have a total girlcrush on ...Jennifer Lawrence. She is so funny and seems really down to Earth! 
  • Sometimes, when no one is around, I ...have spontaneous dance parties or burst into song. 
  • My favorite drink is ...Apple cider. I love it all year round!
Want to see more Agent Interviews? Check them all out here.

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