Erica Rand Silverman is an agent at Stimola Literary Studio primarily interested in books for and about children. Prior to being an agent she was a high school teacher, working with at-risk kids. Stimola Literary is a small, boutique agency with a passionate team and a family feel. They are very selective, representing picture books through young adult.
How you decide to take on a new client:
Erica is very picky about what's she's looking for. She wants to work with clients who have a true sense of purpose in their work. She wants to fall in love with their work, and to connect with the people she chooses to work with. Erica wants to clients who know who they are trying to reach, what they are trying to say, and why.
What is it in a query that makes you want to see the work?
Be professional. Don't send out blanket queries. Erica appreciates it when people are personal in their queries, and coming to her for a reason. People can focus too much on the query, but it really all comes down to the work. Erica has to love it.
How editorial are you?
Erica loves the process of talking to an author about something that's not working and figuring out together. There's magic in that.
How would you characterize the climate for sales?
It's great to see independent book stores coming back to life. It's wonderful to see small, independent publishers being recognized for their work.
Anything we should know about?
The Common Core has created a need for more informational books. It's creating more narrative nonfiction and the mash-up between nonfiction and fiction. It's all new, causing bookstores, etc. are trying to figure out where they fit and where to shelve them.
What is one common question that you hear from people and what's the answer to it?
Are you accepting queries?
Have you read my query yet?
Since Erica is new to Stimola Literary, she has a lot of queries. She will read all of them. If she hasn't gotten to it yet, she will.