Laura recently graduated with her M.A. in Publishing from Rosemont College in Philadelphia, where her graduate thesis won top awards for its spotlight on YA Gothic literature and its nineteenth-century influences. She's worked as a writing tutor and freelance editor, blogs for Quirk Books, and runs her own book reviews blog Scribbles & Wanderlust. When she's not agenting with TriadaUS Literary Agency, she's selling books at Barnes & Noble, singing in choirs, and watching British television dramas with her fluffy black kitty Rossetti. You can find Laura on Twitter.
Welcome, Laura! What are some of your favorite authors/books and why do you love them?
Hands down, Jane Eyre is my all-time favorite book ever ever ever. I see myself in Jane, this outwardly calm and reasonable person with so much emotional undercurrent, with such passion and belief and devotion. She's independent and seeks to find herself and her place in this world, but also wants nothing more than to be loved and accepted. I could go on for days, so for current (and YA) books and authors...
Rainbow Rowell, Gayle Forman, and Stephanie Perkins top my contemporary fiction list. They have the right writing style and voice for the teenager here-and-now. I'll lay down money for every single one of their books. CJ Redwine, Juliet Marillier, and Carol Goodman top my fantasy list -- all set in various times and places, but each have amazing young women in them. Their work is subtle and underrepresented, and worth every word and minute of your time. And finally, Harry Potter. Harry Potter changed my life.
Are you an editorial agent?
Yes, very. When I'm reading a manuscript, I'm reading it with three hats: as an agent (does this have an audience/market?), as an editor (what are things I'd change to make this even better?), and as a reader (hold up, that character did WHAT?! What happens next?!). When I've signed with an author, I go back to the manuscript and meticulously edit punctuation, grammar, structure, etc. But great manuscripts rarely need such attention to detail. I may have more general questions to ask the author and suggest they change. The manuscript that sells is the manuscript that needs as little editing as possible. I'm very hands-on, and if I'm left with my pen/mouse hanging in the air, then the manuscript is polished and ready for the world.
Coffee, tea, wine, chocolate, or any other vices?
Tea. Popcorn. Pork roast. BBC dramas. English, Irish, and Scottish accents.