Monday, August 22, 2016

7 Questions For: Literary Agent Andrea Somberg

A literary agent for over fifteen years, Andrea Somberg represents a wide range of fiction and nonfiction, including projects for adult, young adult and middle grade audiences. 

Previously an agent at the Donald Maass Agency and Vigliano Associates, she joined Harvey Klinger Literary Agency in the spring of 2005. Her clients' books have been NYTimes and USABestsellers, as well as nominated for The Governor General's Award, the Lambda Award, and the Mythopoeic Fantasy Award. Andrea also teaches courses for MediaBistro and Writers Digest. You can learn more about her at and

And now Andrea Somberg faces the 7 Questions:

Question Seven: What are your top three favorite books?

Such a hard question! But, if forced to choose, Susan Cooper's The Dark is Rising, Jenny Offill's The Department of Speculation and R.J. Palacio's Wonder        

Question Six: What are your top three favorite movies and television shows?

This is almost as difficult as my favorite books! I would say Anne of Green Gables (the BBC version), Arrested Development and Bloodlines (honestly, this last one probably isn't an all-time favorite but I'm in the middle of watching and am somewhat obsessed...). 

Question Five: What are the qualities of your ideal client?

Someone who is passionate about their writing but also understands that this is a business. 

Question Four: What sort of project(s) would you most like to receive a query for?

I would really love to find a middle grade novel, either funny or serious, that features a character we haven't seen before and that helps us see the world in a new light. 

Question Three: What is your favorite thing about being an agent? What is your least favorite thing?

I love working with people who are as passionate about  books as I am. Editors, agents, authors--we are all connected by this common bond, and that's something that I find to be truly amazing.

My least favorite thing is the rejection that is an implicit part of every aspect of this industry. 

Question Two: What one bit of wisdom would you impart to an aspiring writer? (feel free to include as many other bits of wisdom as you like)

Try not to let rejections get you down. Persistence is important--if one agent isn't the best fit, try someone else. It can sometimes take awhile to find the best advocate for your book but, once you do, the journey will have been worth it. 

Question One: If you could have lunch with any writer, living or dead, who would it be? Why?

David Foster Wallace.  I recently finished Infinite Jest and...what?!  But I'm pretty sure he wouldn't answer my questions anyway...  

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