Thursday, February 26, 2015

0 Agent Caitie Flum of Liza Dawson Associates Talks Dynamic Characters, Diversity in YA, and Being Crafty

Caitie works at Liza Dawson Associates. Caitie graduated from Hofstra University with a BA in English with a concentration in publishing studies. Caitie interned at Hachette Book Group and Writers House and worked at Bookspan with almost every book club there, gaining valuable experience in sub rights. Caitie grew up in Ohio where she developed her love of reading everything she could get her hands on, played about every sport she could, and spent far too much time belting out showtunes with friends.

1. What advice do you have for writers getting ready to query you? 
Do your research! It is so much easier now than ever to find out more information, take your time, and don't just send to anyone. 
I specifically say many places that I do not represent science fiction and fantasy, but I still get so many queries for them. Please make sure I am the right person for the project. I am all over social media and still have my book blog up at (even though I don't post as many reviews anymore, less time to read for fun!). And don't be scared - I am a person and I want to love what authors send me!
Have other people read your query before you send it, make sure it makes sense to people who don't know your book. I reject a lot of queries because I have no idea what the book is about or what is going on. 
2. Are you an editorial agent?
Of course! Is there anyone who isn't now? I want it to have its best possible chance when we send it out to editors and work closely with authors.
3. What genres are you drawn to most?
I am really drawn to strong women's fiction. I love dynamic characters who don't always do what everyone else would do. I love stories that have strong friendships at their core. I also love a good romance with great characters.
Historical fiction is another genre I am actively looking for, especially when it is told from a perspective we often do not hear from. I would love some YA historical fiction! 
I am also all about mysteries/thrillers of almost ever kind (the big exception is drug cartels). Amateur sleuths and cozy mysteries are really up my alley! 
Finally, I adore YA contemporary books, especially when they have diversity. 
4. Which is more crucial: emotional connection or current marketability? 
It need to be a balance of both. If there is not emotional connection, it probably won't go anywhere, but if there is no market, the same can be true. I would probably lean more towards emotional connection because the market is always changing. 
5. What do you like to do for fun?
So many things! I watch so much TV, cook/bake whenever I can, I love movies and musical theater, and play board games with friends at least a couple times a month. I watch a lot of youtube too. I try to be as connected to the world as I can. I need to get back to cross stitching and other crafty things, there just doesn't seem to be as much time lately! 

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