Patricia Nelson


Literary Agent at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency (@MarsalLyonLit), representing YA, MG, women's fic, romance & select literary fic. I'm looking for a mind at work.

San Diego, CA

Marsal Lyon Literary Agency

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · May 25

I'm continually surprised at the frequency with which I get queries starting with an overly familiar address. "Hey Pat!" "Hi Patty!" I... don't go by those names. Remember: treat it like a business letter. The classic "Dear Patricia" is just fine. #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · Mar 16

#querytip If you're setting your YA/MG in the recent past, you need to have a really good plot reason & compelling worldbuilding. Kids/teens don't have any inherent nostalgia for the 1950s or even the 1990s -- they weren't even alive in the twentieth century (!).

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · Feb 22

I've said it before & I'll say it again: there is NO REASON spend time trashing other books in your query. "My book is good unlike those frivolous pieces of crap The Hunger Games & 50 Shades so obvi you should rep it" is... not an enticing pitch. #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 4 Aug 2017

Still noticing the query trend of VERY long MG novels: 70K, 80K, 90K (!!) Cut these down, folks. This is too long for an MG debut. #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 19 Jul 2017

Gentle reminder to queriers that a query is a business letter. Aim for professional (not informal) & confident (but not arrogant). #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 31 Mar 2017

#querytip When sending req'd materials, name the file "Your Name - Book Title" Many of us read mss on a Kindle &that way we know what it is!

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 17 Mar 2017

Getting a lot of queries lately for 80K+ (!) middle grade novels. Lovely queriers, that is almost always TOO LONG for MG. #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 26 Sep 2016

Periodic PSA that I do NOT rep adult sci-fi/fantasy--for SFF, I'm YA/MG only. Anything online that says otherwise is lying to you! #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 1 Jul 2016

#querytip Don't comp to classics (unless it's as "a modern retelling of...") or books YOU read as a kid. Show you know the current market.

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 16 Jun 2016

Have seen multiple queries this week w/ a typo in the book's title. Oof. I'm forgiving of the occasional mistake, but...proofread! #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 19 May 2016

#querytip: no need to tell me in your query that other agents have req'd fulls. I req based on my own taste, not others' interest. Really!

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 28 Apr 2016

Today's oddest query touts the novel's "brand integration" potential for Chili's Restaurants. This... does not inspire confidence. #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 11 Apr 2016

I don't rep picture books, so if you see PBs as a big part of your career (even if you write MG/YA too), we won't be a perfect fit #querytip

Patricia Nelson @patricianels · 15 Mar 2016

You might be surprised how often queriers claim their book is for "MG, YA & adults." Ack! More categories isn't better--pick one. #querytip