Author: johnmcusick

Agent and VP with Folio Literary Management / Folio Jr. Author of GIRL PARTS, CHERRY MONEY BABY, and DIMENSION WHY. Sub guidelines at http://bit.ly/2i7dTOJ. Videos about the craft and business of writing at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCprQ15YVETJN9VxqcbZm7IQ

I Read From DIMENSION WHY

Friends! My new middle-grade novel is here! If you like time travel, space adventures, and wildly cosmic baked beans, check it out.

DIMENSION WHY: How to Save the Universe Without Really Trying A 31st-century boy and a 21st-century girl team up to save the universe, evade an evil race of bog mutants, and make a quick pit stop to visit the moon…

Buy now at:

Indiebound: https://www.indiebound.org/book/97800…

Barnes & Noble: https://bit.ly/338bxVS

Amazon: https://amzn.to/36eqyY7

“Cusick creates a well-balanced narrative. While levity lightens the load—and the story is legitimately funny—the focus remains on a perfectly paced adventure. A promising series debut.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“Budding sci-fi fans and humor aficionados are bound to team up for this hysterical intergalactic adventure.” (Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)

Now Seeking Adult Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror

Dear Friends,

I am so excited to announce that as of January 2020, I am now representing adult and crossover science-fiction, fantasy, and horror fiction. I will continue to represent and sign new authors of middle-grade and young adult fiction, which will remain a large part of my list, and in addition will now be actively pursuing and selling genre projects in the adult space as well.

What I’m seeking:

I want explosive, colorful, funny, bizarre, exciting stories that examine technology, identity, and human relationships of all kinds. As in kidlit, I’m eager for stories that connect like an emotional gut-punch: vital, personal, and poignant stories, featuring unforgettable characters. I’m particularly eager to find voices from historically underrepresented perspectives in SF/F and horror, and as a queer man, I am especially drawn to LGBTQIA+ and feminist perspectives.

Some recent projects I adored, and which evoke the kinds of stories I’m seeking, are:

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

Circe by Madeline Miller

The Future of Another Timeline by Annalee Newitz

Speak by Louisa Hall

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

 

So John, you may be asking, why the change?

In part, I’m expanding into this space because I love to explore speculative and fantastical worlds, and adore reading these genres. Additionally, and no less importantly, many of my clients who have historically written for kids and teens are now writing for the adult market as well. Laura Sebastian’s HALF SICK OF SHADOWS is the first of these titles I look forward to announcing in the coming year and beyond. Finally, I’ve read so many amazing genre projects in my query inbox that weren’t quite right for the YA market, because of the subject matter, tone, age of the main characters, or a number of other factors, and I don’t want age classifications to limit the kind of amazing stories I represent.

So, if you are an author of quirky, adventurous, challenging and bold sci-fi, fantasy, and horror, be in touch, and if you are an author who isn’t quite sure whether your work is for the YA or adult market, query me and we’ll figure it out together. Speaking of, here are my submission guidelines:

Please email john @ foliolit.com with the word “Query” in the subject line, with your query letter and the first 2500 words of your manuscript pasted into the body of your message.

I can’t wait to read your work and take this journey together!

Welcome Anna Carey!

We’ve been sitting on this news for a bit and now we get to share! I’m so delighted to be working with the brilliant Anna Carey.

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You can find Anna online at http://www.annacareybooks.com and @AnnaCareyBooks.

As some of you may know, Anna is the author of the EVE trilogy, as well as DEADFALL, and her latest, BLACKBIRD. Her books have been translated into twelve languages, and BLACKBIRD is currently in development to be a feature film.

I cannot wait for you guys to see what’s coming next from this razor-sharp voice in YA.  Welcome Anna!

 

Announcing A New YouTube Channel: Agent Brain / Writer Brain

Hey there #amwriting crew, you may have noticed things have been a bit sleepy on the blog lately, but that’s not because we haven’t been busy!

The past few months have been a whirlwind both personally and professionally (lots of exciting announcements to come).  But you may have noticed I’ve been a bit lax on the craft and business posts lately. Well there’s a good reason, I swear.

The past few weeks my wife (former lit agent and all-around publishing maven Molly Cusick) and I have been working on a video series. We want to take the same advice, feedback, and how-tos you’ve found on this site and via our conference visits and webinars, and offer them in a new way. Now you can start watching our new YouTube channel all about the craft and business of writing. We call it: Agent Brain / Writer Brain.

Why not check out this video on querying? We’ve posted a few so far, on topics like raising the stakes, writing with scenes, and crafting your query letter, and if you like what you see, please give us a like and subscribe. That way you’ll always know when we’ve posted a new vid, and it will also help more writers find us through YouTube’s search algorithm (which is pretty cool).

We’ll be posting new videos pretty much every week, so check back in for more. And in the meantime– keep writing!

– John & Molly

Happy Pub Day to Don Zolidis and Kayla Cagan!

It’s a big double pub day today– congrats to Don Zolidis on his debut novel, THE SEVEN TORMENTS OF AMY AND CRAIG, and to Kayla Cagan on her follow to Piper Perish, ART BOSS!

Seven Torments Cover
“Appealingly realistic… Outrageously funny… Full of humor and heart, this refreshingly unromantic romance is highly recommended for most collections.”―School Library Journal
Janesville, Wisconsin (cold in the sense that there is no God)
1994
The worst thing that’s ever happened to Craig is also the best: Amy. Amy and Craig never should’ve gotten together. Craig is an awkward, Dungeons & Dragons-playing geek, and Amy is the beautiful, fiercely intelligent student-body president of their high school.
Yet somehow they did, until Amy dumped him. Then got back together with him. Then dumped him again. Then got back together with him again. Over and over and over.
Unfolding during their senior year, Amy and Craig’s exhilarating, tumultuous relationship is a kaleidoscope of joy, pain, and laughter as an uncertain future-and adult responsibility-loom on the horizon.
Craig fights for his dream of escaping Janesville and finding his place at a quirky college, while Amy’s quest to uncover her true self sometimes involves being Craig’s girlfriend, and sometimes doesn’t.
Seven heartbreaks. Seven joys. Told nonsequentially, acclaimed playwright Don Zolidis’s debut novel is a brutally funny, bittersweet taste of the utterly unique and utterly universal experience of first love. (Disney-Hyperion)
“There may not be another book published … that is more perfect for artistic ART BOSS cover[readers] who love stability yet crave adventure.” —Teen Vogue

Debut author Kayla Cagan breathes new life into fiction in this dynamic, authentic book. Warhol-obsessed Piper will have readers asking big questions along with her. What is love? What is friendship? What is family? What should I wear?

Piper Perish inhales air and exhales art. The sooner she and her best friends can get out of Houston and get to New York City, the better. Art school has been Piper’s dream forever, and now that senior year is halfway over, she’s never felt more ready. But in the final months before graduation, things are weird with her friends and stressful with three different guys, and Piper’s sister’s tyranny thwarts every attempt at happiness for the Perish family. Piper’s art just might be enough to get her out. But is she brave enough to seize that power when it means giving up so much? (Chronicle Books)

Julie Murphy’s DUMPLIN’ to Netflix!

Fantastic news, friends: the film adaptation of Julie Murphy’s #1 New York Times-bestselling YA novel, Dumplin’ (HarperCollins/Balzer+Bray), will be released on Netflix later this year! The movie stars Danielle Macdonald (PATTI CAKE$) as self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson, and Jennifer Aniston as Will’s mom, a former beauty queen dumplinnetflixwho now runs her small-town pageant. Will signs up for her mom’s pageant as a protest that escalates when other contestants follow in her footsteps, revolutionizing the pageant and their small Texas town. With starry Texas nights, a swoon-worthy romance, red candy suckers, and a Dolly Parton soundtrack, the book–and now the movie–will be sure to steal your heart.

Anne Fletcher (The Proposal) directed the movie, with Dolly Parton recording new versions of her classic songs with collaborators such as Sia and Miranda Lambert in addition to six new original songs co-written by Parton and Linda Perry. The debut single from the soundtrack, “Here I Am,” will drop on September 14th.

For more information on the movie, check out the press release from the Hollywood Reporter! And congratulations, Julie!

Pre-order PUDDIN’ on Barnes & Noble & Amazon, or read DUMPLIN‘ before you see the film!

Congrats to Jorge Lacera on his latest illustration deal!

So I’m a bit late sharing this news here, but I’m so excited to announce the latest illo deal for artist Jorge Lacera! Check out the announcement in PW:

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Regular readers may recall that last year Jorge and his wife Megan signed a two-book deal last year with Lee & Low for their creation ZOMBIES DON’T EAT VEGGIES. We’re so excited to add Disney-Hyperion to Jorge’s list of publishers!

Check out more from the Lacera family at http://www.studiolacera.com/

Congrats Jorge and Deborah!

Hafsah Faizal’s WE HUNT THE FLAME gets a cover!

In case you missed it, last week Entertainment Weekly offered a sneak peak at Hafsah Faizal’s May 2019 debut, WE HUNT THE FLAME! I highly recommend you check out the article, since Hafsah has some really beautiful things to say her cover and what it means to her as an #ownvoices author.

Chances are you’ve seen the cover (it’s been all over the internet by now), but in case you haven’t, check it out!

WE HUNT THE FLAME Final Cover.jpg

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man to kill in the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her village. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating men foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the king. If Zafira were exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir showed any of the pity or compassion he felt, his father would dismiss him as weak. Both are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya — but neither of them want to be. Their paths cross when Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can save their cursed world, and Nasir is sent to kill her. But an ancient evil stirs, and the prize may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.

Find WE HUNT THE FLAME on Goodreads, and visit Hafsah online at HafsahFaizal.com and on twitter @hafsahfaizal.

Congrats to S.K. Ali on her Two Book Deal!

S.K. Ali’s SAINTS AND MISFITS has touched so many readers and received so much praise, including becoming a William C. Morrow finalist. Today we get to announce there’s lots more to come from @sajidahwrites!

Check out the announcement from Publishers Weekly:

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Congrats S.K.!

You can check out SAINTS AND MISFITS on Goodreads, and pre-order on AmazonB&N, and Indiebound.