Because romance is such a competitive and crowded and shrinking marketplace in print, those submissions must have strong, complex, and relatable characters. The hooks must be compelling, the narrative voice must be entertaining, and the pacing has *got* to be just right. #MSWL
Norma @normajeanesaysHello, literary agents! It’s been awhile since I’ve done this, so here’s a thread of #MSWL requests, aka the submissions I want to see in my inbox:
First off, work by BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and/or disabled authors are always welcome in the genres I edit, which includes romance yes, but also mystery and thrillers, upmarket fiction, fiction with fantasy/sci-fi/ speculative elements that are mainstream crossovers, and nonfiction.
#MSWL Who must I sell my soul to for a fantasy retelling of A ROOM WITH A VIEW? The manners, the beauty, the romance. The whole book (and movie) feels like you've walked straight into an impressionist painting, and I want that but, like, with magic.
(🧵4/7) ❤️ #Romance: Any can apply, but here are the subgenres/themes we want the most:
-Historical romance, contemporary, and romantic suspense novels.
-We also accept romantic comedies, LGBTQ+, young adult/new adult romance, etc.
If you don't see your genre, please apply. #MSWL
(Thread 3/7) #Fantasy -> Action and Adventure: We mainly want thrilling stories, with disasters, expeditions, survival stories, anything with space and aliens, treasure hunts, technology, or with romantic elements. #MSWL
(Thread 2/7) ✅ #Fantasy: Worlds where technology took over (Black Mirror), Parallel universes, fringe science, time travel, low fantasy, urban fantasy, dying earth (NOT VIRUSES), historical fantasy, lost worlds, dystopian, futuristic, utopia, romantic fantasy, etc. #MSWL
I'm in the mood for some upmarket spec fic based on the Egyptian myths. I would also love to see an angsty, romantic, political, intense high fantasy series centered on Osiris and Isis. #mswl
🌟Fantasy set in non-European-inspired settings
▫️Think: Raybearer, Aru Shah and the End of Time
🌟Epic YA romance embedded within a larger story
▫️Think: King of Scars/Rule of Wolves, Raybearer #MSWL
That's the stuff that never changes! And here are the specifics about what I'm particularly looking for right now.
IN GRAPHIC NOVELS
🌟Young adult contemp romance w/ substance, especially centering characters w/ marginalized identities
▫️Think: Heartstopper, Pumpkinheads #MSWL
🌟Authentic, own-voices rep of characters w/ marginalized & intersectional identities in stories of adventure, romance, friendship, joy, & personal growth. Especially but not exclusively:
▪️Protags w/ disabilities &/or neurodivergences
I'M ALSO SEEKING
🖋️ Dark academia that takes place in unusual contexts, like community colleges or immersion programs
🖋️Historical romance centering working class people and marginalized groups
🖋️Stories that mix magic, pop culture, and rock & roll like THE WICKED + THE DIVINE
👻 Religious horror from any and all traditions
👻 Queer and feminist horror
👻 Psychological terror
👻 Genre-bending heartrenders like IN THE DREAM HOUSE
👻 HORROR ROMANCE
Please do not send horror set in psychiatric wards or centering suicide.
I love a good haunting and a good heist, always, and the shadowy place where horror, fantasy, and romance kiss. I’m not big on chosen ones, magical rebellions, elemental magic, or stories centering warriors, but I'm open to being surprised by the right manuscript.
✨ Atmospheric, character-driven contemporary fantasy like THE RAVEN CYCLE
✨ High fantasy with intricate religious, magical, and sexual worldbuilding like KUSHIEL'S DART
✨ Fantasy romance in the vein of Grace Draven and Naomi Novik
✨ Gothics of all subgenres
Some of my favorite romantic tropes include second chance romance, forbidden love, marriage in trouble, exes to lovers, rivals to loves, and villain and monster romances. Please don't send me romances featuring members of the law enforcement or military, or secret babies.
❤️🔥Queer and polyamorous love stories of all kinds
❤️🔥Inclusive historicals that feel like KJ Charles or Cat Sebastian
❤️🔥Witty contemporary romances in the vein of Talia Hibbert
❤️🔥Moody erotic romances a la Sierra Simone or Tiffany Reisz