Saturday, August 29, 2020

Middle Grade Ninja Episode 85: Literary Agent Kiana Nguyen

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Kiana Nguyen and I have a blast discussing our mutual love for THE LAST OF US PART II. Eventually, we get around to her role as a literary agent for Donald Maass Literary Agency as well as a park ranger. We talk about “standard” coming out stories and “girl-saves-the-world” stories and why both are better avoided. We also chat about evaluating queries and manuscripts, agent/client communication styles, quarantine for Covid 19, the future of publishing, the emotional inner lives of characters, a for-real ghost story, and so much more.

Kiana Nguyen joined Donald Maass Literary Agency in 2016, where she assisted several agents, and is now building her own client list. She is seeking YA fiction across genres, particularly those with POC and queer voices. She is also interested in Adult romance and domestic suspense thrillers.


Looking for:
– Dark, twisty narratives that explore human complexity
– YA Contemporary featuring lower socioeconomic backgrounds; poor kids who get in as much reckless mischief as their rich counterparts!
– YA featuring happy/hopeful queer romances
– Domestic suspense Thrillers!!!

Do not send:
– Non-fiction
– Crime or military fiction
– Picture books, chapter books, or MG
– Poetry, screenplays, or short stories
– Religious fiction

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