Agent

YA, middle grade, and picture books

More information on my clients

Publisher's Marketplace

JOHN CUSICK

A few of the Authors I represent:

About Me:

I represent a diverse list of iconoclastic voices, award winners, and New York Times bestsellers. My focus is young adult and middle grade, as well as a select list of author-illustrators.

I graduated Wesleyan University in 2007 with a double major in English and Russian Literature—a degree one professor called “fun but useless.” After working as a freelance writer, bookseller, dog walker, cashier, and radio host, I became a literary agent’s assistant and quickly began building my own list. Around the same time I also became an author; my young adult novels, Girl Parts and Cherry Money Baby, were published by Candlewick Press.

As a writer myself, I bring both a creative and commercial sensibility to my agenting style. I’m an editorial agent who works closely with my clients, whether it’s developing a debut project or helping a seasoned author achieve that breakout novel. My goal is to match authors with their dream editor, secure the best deals possible, and grow an author’s readership over a long career. I am passionate about helping clients achieve their full potential, and I’m looking for dedicated, original, fervent, visionary creators.

WHAT I’M LOOKING FOR:

I’m seeking unique voices in young adult and middle-grade. I want stories that move readers, moments that make me look up and say “Wow, yes. I’ve felt that.”

I want beautiful, character-driven YA and MG that connects like an emotional gut-punch. I love the strange, iconoclastic, and unusual. I want #ownvoices stories of all styles and genres. I want fresh fantasy set in our world and others, where the stakes are both monumental and personal, the world-building detailed, and the characters unforgettable. Send me the books kids will sneak / steal / borrow in secret. Those intimate, dangerous, life-saving stories. I'm looking for boundary pushers, a pitch that makes (certain) people say, "You can't write a YA / MG about THAT!!"

I want books that keep me turning the page. I love proactive protagonists, kids and teens chasing a dream or a hero who swings in with a song in her heart and a knife in her teeth. I am not currently taking on picture book texts or books for the adult market.

HOW TO Submit:

Please email your query along with the first 2500 words of your manuscript, with the word QUERY in the subject line, to john@foliolit.com. I try to respond to all queries, however if you do not hear from me within thirty days, please consider it a pass.