Book Broker – an interview with Danielle Svetcov

Book Broker—an interview with literary agent Danielle Svetcov from LGR Literary Agency (Query tips, #mswl manuscript wish list suggestions)


Agent: Danielle Svetcov

Website: LGRLiterary.com

An interview with lit agent Danielle Svetcov from LGR Literary Agency (Query tips, #mswl manuscript wish list suggestions)

Preferred genres: heavily reported non-fiction, including art history, science, technology, sports, biography, and personal essay. Also illustrated titles, humor, and quirky fiction.

Bio: Danielle Svetcov is the author of Parked, a “quirky” “big-hearted” middle-grade novel that “explores what happens when homelessness and helpfulness collide.” Before Parked, Danielle wrote for the New York TimesU.S. News & World ReportForbes, and the Chicago Tribune Magazine. She joined the Levine Greenberg Rostan Literary Agency in 2002. Her clients tend to be oppositional but reasoned, serious but amused—preferring their rabbit holes deep.


1) What stands out in a good submission?

Voice. Economy of words. Confidence (not overconfidence). An understanding of the market you’re writing for and who your competition is. And some savvy about how this bonkers industry works.

2) What's a typical warning sign that a manuscript isn't ready for representation?

The query letter reads, “You are the very first person to read this.”

3) What's at the top of your manuscript wish list right now?

Deeply reported journalism about science and culture and history.

4) What do you love most about being an agent, and what do you find the most challenging?

I love working with the words and the humans who make them. I love the education I’m constantly getting from my authors. I love the thrill of the sale. I love geeking out with editors about a great book (all editors and agents are geeks, no matter how they portray themselves). And I’m absolutely tortured by the difficulties of getting attention and sales when a book finally publishes.

5) What typically draws you deep into a manuscript? What common snags are likely to break your narrative immersion?

Authority mixed with a slightly off-kilter, sharp detail is usually what wins me over. What usually scares me off: a character waking up in the very first line of a book.

6) If you could change one thing about the publishing industry, what would it be and why?

I wish it didn’t have to recreate the cat-mouse publicity-media chase with every single book; I wish there were a way for books to get more attention, all the time, without constantly fighting for it.

7) What's the best (non-client) book you've read recently, and how did it hook you?

Simon the Fiddler. Paulette Giles is just magic. In a past life, she must’ve been the indentured servant to a carpetbagger.

8) Can you tell us about an exciting author you're working with at the moment?

A Big Stink: A Tale of Ardor and Odor by Edward H. Kafka-Gelbrecht, Sophia Vincent Guy (Illustrator)

I have to pick one?

There’s a humor/gift book called A Big Stink, by Edward H. Kafka-Gelbrecht and Sophia Vincent Guy that wholly satisfies my inner ham and was written for New Yorker readers with gas… which is all of us, of course.

There’s the bestselling Breath, by James Nestor.

Vagina Obscura: An Anatomical Voyage by Rachel E. Gross

And, forthcoming in March 2022, Vagina Obscura, an anatomical voyage through women’s reproductive systems like you’ve never read before; the author, science journalist Rachel Gross, is Ms. Frizzle crossed with Dr. Ruth.  

 


Interview with literary agent Danielle Svetcov from LGR Literary Agency (Query advice, #mswl manuscript wishlist tips)

About the Darling Axe

We are professional editors as well as award-winning writers. We understand the intense effort and emotional investment you have poured into your work. It's our job to help you take your manuscript to the next level.



Work with a professional fiction editor from the Darling Axe: manuscript development and book editing services



Darling Axe Academy – Query Quest: a self-paced querying course

Darling Axe Academy – Best-laid plans: a self-paced outlining course

Book a sample edit with a professional fiction editor from the Darling Axe: manuscript development and book editing services

Related Posts

Who Killed the Omniscient Narrator?  A Brief History of POV
Who Killed the Omniscient Narrator? A Brief History of POV
In deep third, the narrative voice belongs to the focal character. Every scene filters through their sensory awareness a
Read More
Building a Fictional World: A Novelist's Guide
Building a Fictional World: A Novelist's Guide
Repeat this to yourself: the world is merely the backdrop. It is not the story. It will want to be the story. It will tr
Read More
Is Save the Cat! for lazy novelists?
Is Save the Cat! for lazy novelists?
You’ll never be able to create an engaging plot with deeply nuanced and compelling characters simply by using a formula.
Read More

Leave a comment

Name .
.
Message .

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published