Jack King A New King of Thrillers

Targeted Directory of literary agents and editors of commercial fiction


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spywriter See what it took to publish my first novel spywriter

Welcome to my personal list of literary agents and publishers / editors acquiring commercial fiction. The list helped me find a literary agent who robbed me, and an editor who published me. All information came from open sources: Google, blogs, testimonials, industry publications, etc.

The list is not maintained, and I am keeping it for historical records only. These lists are no longer necessary. It is now exceedingly easy to find any number of publishing contacts in no time. They are at your fingertips. Use the data provided here as a starting point. Most of the people listed on these pages are in business. Some started their own companies, others merged, moved, or changed genres of interest, etc. Follow them, and they will lead you to a wealth of new contacts. Figuring out the contact information is the easiest part. Simply use company formula to decipher email addresses.

A few words of advice, if I may. Ask yourself: Why do you write? Do you simply want to see your name on a book cover, in a bookshop? In this case your best bet is to follow the flavor of the month. Search out the current MSWL, and toss off a novel in a few weeks. They'll snatch it and ask for more. I know it can be done. I wrote a novel in 35 days, and I have writing friends who release new novels monthly.

If you aspire to write something longer lasting: Do not be trigger-happy. Finish, and edit your manuscript. Pass it around to your beta readers, local book club / groups, etc. Edit again. Put it away for 6 months. Read it. If it still holds - query.

Target properly (no point querying a children's picture book agent / editor, with a gory horror story).

What to expect? Most agents / editors will not reply at all. It's a strange world, I know. I worked with some of the most despicable people in the world, truly malignant government slugs (are there any other kind?). Yet, if you wrote to them, they'd write back, if only a form letter. Meanwhile most agents don't have the decency to say a simple: "No, thanks." Editors are a somwhat different story. Most publishing houses forbid editors from considering submissions from writers. Yet, some will. It depends how high you aim. An editorial assistant might be too low on the company ladder, even if she acquires, whereas an executive might bend the rules. That's how I became a published author.

Query by email. Skip Query Forms, if you want to keep your sanity, as these are a nightmare to keep track of. Use a good email client, one that allows you to search by a variety of ways: To, From, Body, etc. You'll appreciate it after sending out hundreds of queries. Be careful before submitting your manuscript to personal, rather than company emails. Consider this: submitting a manuscript to a Gmail address means giving away the entire book to Alphabet. Be persistent, and do not give up.



Capital Crime Press
PO Box 272904, Fort Collins,
CO 80527
Alex Cole

We only publish mystery/crime fiction, and are partial to certain styles over other ones. We generally publish manuscripts between 65,000 and 95,000 words in length.


Carina Press
(Harlequin Imprint)
Angela James
Digital Books only

"Contract does not include advance, and authors are paid higher royalty."
"Carina Press is currently accepting submissions in all genres of commercial fiction. Carina Press will consider shorter stories, genre novels of 50,000 to 100,000 words and longer, and complex narratives of over 100,000 words. Carina Press will also acquire books that have been previously released in print form, but for which the author has either retained digital rights or had digital rights revert to them. All submissions should be sent to submissions [at] carinapress [dot] com."


ChiZine Publications
1. We accept unsolicited novel and short story collection manuscripts of up to 100,000 words. (We do not accept poetry at this time, although we might make an exception for a novel-in-verse, like Dorothy Porter's noirish The Monkey's Mask. Query first.)
2. We are a dark fiction genre publisher. This includes science fiction, fantasy, horror, magic realism, industrial thrillers, etc. We are interested in the unusual, the outré, the transgressive. We are interested in pushing the boundaries.
3. Your submission should include:
o a SHORT cover letter (you can put this in the body of your e-mail) with contact info and a brief bio note;
o a one-page synopsis of your manuscript;
o and the first 3–4 chapters/stories of your book.
DO NOT send the whole manuscript.
4. DO NOT SEND: Twilight retreads, Sookie Stackhouse homages, Tolkien knock-offs, stories set in worlds created by other writers.
5. Your submission should be, above all, well-written—strong style, characters, plot. Leave your clichés and genre tropes at home. Give us an unusual point of view. Make us sit up and take notice. Please be sure to read this page about our publishing philosophy before you submit.
6. No multiple submissions.
7. Simultaneous submission is okay, so long as you tell us it's simultaneous, and alert us immediately if it's accepted elsewhere.
8. Please e-mail submissions as a readable attachment (DOC, RTF, or ODT) in standard manuscript format to submissions@chizinepub.com.
9. Response time will vary depending on volume of submissions.


Cedar Fort, Inc.,
925 N. Main,
Springville UT 84663
(801) 489-4084
Lee Nelson, editor
Pays 6-12% Send synopsis + 3 sample chapters + author info


Chronicle Books
680 Second Street,
San Francisco CA 94107;
415-537-4300 800-722-6657 Fax: 415-537-3730.
Mysteries, thrillers, and other fiction.
Jay Schaefer


Cloud Peak,
730 W. 51st St.,
Casper WY 82601
Paul Harwitz
Q with sase


Crippen & Landru Publishers
P.O. Box 9315
Norfolk, VA 23505-9315
Mostly short story collections



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