Presenters and Instructors

This page will be updated as more faculty members are
confirmed for the 2022 Atlanta Writing Workshop.

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Screen Shot 2020-05-10 at 11.40.52 PM.pngTara Bailey is the founder and CEO of Bailey Publishing House.

Tara founded Bailey Publishing House, LLC in 2016. She serves as Chief Executive Officer and Senior Editor.

At the 2022 online ATL Writing Workshop, Tara is meeting virtually with writers for add-on manuscript critiques.

Tara is a ghostwriter and author of Dracula of the West Side and Number Seven (2018). She’s the author of the dark comedy play, “Deadbeat” (2017). The play premiered on May 21, 2018 at the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater, downtown Pittsburgh. The production was produced by Wali Jamal Abdullah and directed by Kim El.

She was the featured speaker at the Celebration of Reading in June 2017 and Pittsburgh’s Write On: Black Book Expo in November 2017. Along with speaking at book festivals, BPH hosts an annual writers workshop. She’s been a featured guest on WAMO 100 radio programs and Soul Pitt Quarterly wrote an article about her company in Summer 2017 edition. In addition to her commitment to BPH, she is also Editor-in-Chief for a personal care home monthly magazine in Pennsylvania.

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Screen Shot 2016-11-02 at 3.23.45 PM.pngBrian A. Klems (@BrianKlems) is the former online editor of WritersDigest.com.

He is the co-coordinator of the 2022 Atlanta Writing Workshop. At the event, he is offering query critiques as an add-on for attendees.

His blog during his tenure there, The Writer’s Dig—which covered everything writing and publishing—was one of the largest blogs in the writing community.

Brian’s first book, Oh Boy, You’re Having a Girl: A Dad’s Guide to Raising Daughters (Adams Media) was released in 2013. It received high-level buzz and praise from some of the funniest writers alive, including Dave Barry and Bruce Cameron. Brian is also a proud graduate of the Ohio University E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, a husband, softball infielder, perennial fantasy sports underachiever, and father of three lovely little girls.

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Rachelle Gardner is a literary agent and the founder of Gardner Literary.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Rachelle is teaching classes. She is also taking one-on-one pitches from attendees.

As a literary agent since 2007, Rachelle has negotiated 300+ contracts with more than 20 publishers, and worked with more than 200 authors to bring their books to publication and build their careers.

She’s been in publishing since 1995, worked in-house at two publishing companies, and edited books published by Harper Collins, Simon & Schuster, Penguin Random House, and many more. Nowadays she feels lucky to work at the foot of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado.

When she’s not working, you can usually find her out hiking the local trails, riding her bike, haunting bookstores, or having coffee at Starbucks.

She is seeking:

“I represent NONFICTION books for the Christian market (CBA) as well as for the general market, and we are accepting queries for both.

“If you’re writing nonfiction, we can’t really sell it unless you have a sizable platform. If you don’t, you may want to pursue smaller publishers on your own — you don’t need an agent. Only pursue an agent if you have a platform and want to work the medium to large publishers.

“We’re interested in:

  • Next generation voices in the faith community
  • Books about the intersection of faith and culture
  • Deconstructing and reconstructing faith; asking hard questions about faith
  • Books by BIPOC authors; books that grapple with racial issues, LGBTQ+ issues, and all social issues
  • Deeper spirituality and prayer books
  • Books about animal conservation, animal sanctuaries, and animals that help people
  • Feminism and women’s issues
  • Memoirs about any of the above — must be well-written and the author should have a platform.
  • Family life — interested in really unique and/or extraordinary takes on parenting and family, whether it’s memoir or self-help
  • Devotionals with depth, originality, and a definable audience
  • Gift books: journals, guided journals, gifty devotionals; other gift-type books for occasions such as graduation

She is NOT seeking:

— Fiction
— Cookbooks
— Poetry
— Short stories
— Novellas
— Screenplays
— Graphic novels
— NO children’s, middle grade, or YA books

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Latoya C. Smith is a literary agent with Arthouse Literary Agency.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Latoya is teaching a class. She is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitching.

In fiction, she seeks high-concept women’s fiction; high-concept mystery, thriller and horror, romance (contemporary, romantic suspense, cowboys, historical, LGBTQ, paranormal, sweet), comedy / romantic comedy, and young adult (no SF/F). In nonfiction, she is strictly seeking platform and market-based books in the areas of memoir, how to, advice, relationships, health, wellness, politics, current events, history, sports, pop culture, and business.

“Having worked for corporate New York publishing houses, independent and boutique presses, and with self-published authors, I have a well-rounded knowledge of book publishing with a core network of relationships with authors, literary agents, and other publishing professionals. I graduated Cum Laude from Temple University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and a minor in African American Studies. I have been featured in Publishers Weekly, Forbes, and USA Today, as well as on various author, book conference, and book blogger websites. I am the winner of the 2012 RWA Golden Apple Award for Editor of the Year, the 2017 RWA Golden Apple Award for Agent of the Year, and the 2017 Literary Jewels Award for Editor of the Year. In early 2014, I appeared on CSpan2 where I contributed to a panel discussing the state of book publishing.”

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Savannah Brooks is a literary agent with Jennifer De Chiara Literary.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Savannah is teaching a class. She is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

Savannah joined the Jennifer De Chiara team in 2018 as an Associate Literary Agent after interning for a year and a half. She earned her MFA, focused in creative nonfiction, from Hamline University and her BS in marketing management from Virginia Tech. As well as agenting, she works as a teaching artist at the Loft Literary Center and is a reader for multiple literary magazines. Her own creative work has been published in Barely South Review, Hobart, Lime Hawk, and Every Writer’s Resource, among others. When not immersed in the world of words, she can be found on her motorcycle, at her MMA gym, or lounging at one of Minnesota’s 11,842 lakes.

She is seeking:

“I mainly represent kid-lit (PB, MG, and YA), and I’m interested in books that focus on friendship, conflicting identity, and the theme of truth. I’m always drawn in by a protagonist venturing into a realm where society says they don’t belong (think swapping gender norms), and characters with weird obsessions are a weird obsession of mine—teach me strange new things, and I’m yours. I’m all about magical realism, non-western mythology, and modern retellings, but I’m not the best fit for high fantasy or science fiction.

“In picture books, I’m searching for projects that teach about and celebrate different cultures and places in the world and those that tackle serious topics in really accessible ways. For MG, I learn very heavily into action-adventure, especially those based on global folklore and mythology, and I love a snarky narrator and spooky situations. In YA, I’m looking for multicultural and queer perspectives on everything from modern teen experiences to reframing classic tropes like vampires and witches. I’ve been particularly wanting to see some horror.

“Mostly, I’m invested in representing the diverse world in which we live and would like to see that reflected in a cast of characters. Show me variations in race, sexuality, gender, dis/ability, and ethnicity without that difference being a point of contention, and I’ll be thrilled. Call me an idealist, but my goal for each book is to give kids/teens an opportunity to point to the page and say, “Finally, there I am.”

“I am very selective about taking on fiction works for adult audiences, but when I do, I look for two genres: 1) contemporary novels that walk the line of being funny while still adding to a larger sociopolitical conversation, and 2) thrillers that add to a larger sociopolitical conversation (but are NOT law-enforcement focused, including FBI/CIA). I would love to hear more from marginalized voices, regardless of whether or not marginalization is a central theme.”

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Gordon Warnock is a literary agent founding partner at Fuse Literary, serving as a literary agent and Editorial Director of Short Fuse Publishing. He brings years of experience as a senior agent, marketing director, editor for independent publishers, publishing consultant, and author coach. He frequently teaches workshops and gives keynote speeches at conferences and MFA programs nationwide. He is an honors graduate of CSUS with a B.A. in Creative and Professional Writing.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Gordon is teaching a class. He is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

With a zest for fresh, new voices and a deep love of the classics, Gordon actively seeks out both the timely and the timeless. In that spirit, he establishes involved, long-term working relationships with talented and dedicated authors of many genres.

“I’m looking for large-platform projects in which the book represents something bigger than the book itself, of which you are the expert, the one best fit to bring it to the page. I prefer to work with socially-responsible books that raise new issues or illuminate common issues in new ways. I love books with strong charity tie-ins and celebrities coming together to promote a good cause on a large scale. For memoir, please paste in the first chapter below your query. For graphic nonfiction, please attach a 10-page sequential PDF excerpt of the finished artwork, not to exceed 50 MB. For all other genres, please email your query letter only.

“The nonfiction categories I consider include the following:

• Memoir (Adult, NA, YA, Graphic)
• Cookbooks/Food Narrative/Food Studies
• Illustrated/Art/Photography (especially graphic nonfiction)
• Political and Current Events
• Pop-Science
• Pop-Culture (especially punk culture and geek culture)
• Self-Help
• How-To
• Humor
• Pets
• Business and Career

“Some of my favorites are: Wreck This Journal, Steak and Cake, Digging Up Mother, Drinking at the Movies, and Paper: Paging through History.

Fiction interests:

“I’m looking for fresh concepts that excite me before I even start reading and tension-filled prose that won’t let me stop. Plot is very important, as is an authentic voice that makes me believe your protagonist is a real person. Novels must be completed, polished and between 55,000 and 100,000 words long. For all text-based works, please paste in the first chapter below your query. For graphic novels, please attach a 10-page sequential PDF excerpt of the finished artwork, not to exceed 50 MB. The genres I consider include the following:

• High-Concept Suspense
• Book Club Women’s Fiction
• Literary Fiction for Adults through YA
• Graphic Novels for Adults through MG

“Some of my favorites are: The Good Girl, Gaijin, The Weight of Lies, Freakboy, and We the Animals.

Not looking for:

• Genre Fiction (Western, Romance, Sci-Fi)
• Satire
• Legal Thrillers
• New Age
• Children’s and MG
• Novellas
• Screenplays
• Collections of essays, short fiction, or poetry (unless you also write full-length works)

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Kortney Price is a literary agent with Raven Quill Literary Agency.

At the online 2022 ATLWW, Kortney is teaching a class. She is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

“I work primarily on children’s books — stories from board book up through young adult. My tastes in stories are pretty broad, but here’s a rundown of what I’m most excited about seeing in my inbox…

“I am committed to building a list that reflects the diversity of our world and so I am passionate about diverse representation in the books I work with. I would love to see a vast array of characters and own voices writers writing them. Because of my experience working with the special needs community, I’m especially excited for books featuring all of those uniquely special brains or bodies that don’t operate like everyone else’s.”

In Nonfiction:

Categories: PB, MG, YA, Graphic Novel

“How to” books for kids such as cooking, art, science, computers, mindfulness, handiness skills, wilderness skills, etc. I’m looking for a unique take on these kinds of books, especially one that evokes the imagination in some way.

Books for girls (or boys!) featuring body image, body changes, lifestyle, stress management/mindfulness or health

Picture books that introduce readers to new concepts such as baking, music, yoga, mindfulness, dance, etc.

In Fiction:

Categories: PB, Early Reader, Chapter Book, MG, YA, Graphic Novel

Fun facts about me:

My first ever job was showing cattle at the county fair for a cut of the winnings.
I have volunteered/worked in the special needs community since I was 9 years old. The first thing I taught was swim lessons.

I “played” 9 sports at various times growing up. I was never any good at any of them, but enjoyed dance, swim and track the most. I loved jazz and tap, swam the 400m IM and ran the 400m sprint.

I tell people I’m from Saint Louis, but I’m actually originally from a teeny farm town in Southern Illinois, about an hour’s drive east of the city.

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Devon Halliday is a literary agent with Transatlantic Literary.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Devon is teaching a class. She is not taking pitches.

Devon joined Transatlantic as a Literary Agent in the summer of 2020, with prior experience at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates, Susanna Lea Associates, Writers House, Maria B. Campbell Associates, and Folio Literary Management in agenting and scouting. She grew up in Athens, OH, and studied Comparative Literature at Brown University. After years in the NYC publishing scene, she has returned to Ohio and is building a list at Transatlantic in literary and upmarket fiction and niche nonfiction.

“I’ve worked with a vast range of authors across all genres, and I’m always excited to discover new subjects and ways of seeing the world.”

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Kaitlyn Sanchez is a mom, wife, literary agent at Context Literary Agency, middle school math teacher, and picture book author.

“I’m also the co-creator and co-host of the Spring Fling Kidlit Contest, creator and co-host of the Kidlit Fall Writing Frenzy Contest, and one of the hosts along with my critique group 6 Ladies and a MANuscript, of Kidlit Zombie Week.

“In my free time, I love to play soccer, binge-watch shows on Hulu, and, of course, read. My favorite stories are historical fiction; short stories are my jam. I’ve recently gotten into dramas, fantasies, mysteries, and romances. And of course, I LOVE picture books! Especially when my husband, daughter, and I all cozy up and read together.

At the online 2022 ATLWW, Kaitlyn is teaching a class. She is not meeting with writers for pitches.

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Amaryah Orenstein is a literary agent with Go Literary.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Amaryah is teaching a class. She is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

Amaryah has always loved to read and provide (oftentimes unsolicited) editorial advice and, as a literary agent, she is thrilled to help writers bring their ideas to life. She is particularly drawn to narrative nonfiction and memoir but enjoys any book that connects the reader to its characters and evokes thought and feeling.

Amaryah began her career at the Laura Gross Literary Agency in 2009 and, prior to that, she worked as an Editorial Assistant at various academic research foundations, including the Tauber Institute, where she edited books for Brandeis University Press/University Press of New England. Originally from Montreal, Canada, Amaryah earned a BA at McGill University before coming to the United States to pursue graduate studies in American History. She completed an MA at Ohio University’s Contemporary History Institute and a PhD at Brandeis University, and currently serves as Co-President of the Boston chapter of the Women’s National Book Association.

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Kimiko Nakamura is a literary agent with Dee Mura Literary, representing YA and adult titles within the genres of contemporary, literary, historical, and women’s fiction. In the categories of non-fiction she specializes in cookbooks and memoir.

At the 2022 online ATLWW, Kimiko is offering add-on manuscript critiques for attendees.

A graduate of Boston University’s Book Publishing program and Skidmore College, Kimiko has called the publishing industry home since 2006. From production to sales she’s worked within publishing houses to release new titles and foster backlist profits. As an agent, she uses this diverse background to assist her clients with all stages of publication, and well beyond.

Kimiko works with aspiring and established authors alike. She loves projects that reimagine what’s possible, characters with something (or nothing) to lose, unique viewpoints, trailblazing heroines, and cookbooks she can read like the Sunday morning paper.

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Screen Shot 2018-12-06 at 8.36.35 PMHenry Herz wrote the traditionally published picture books: MONSTER GOOSE NURSERY RHYMES (Pelican), WHEN YOU GIVE AN IMP A PENNY (Pelican), MABEL AND THE QUEEN OF DREAMS (Schiffer), LITTLE RED CUTTLEFISH (Pelican), CAP’N REX & HIS CLEVER CREW (Sterling), GOOD EGG AND BAD APPLE (Schiffer), HOW THE SQUID GOT TWO LONG ARMS (Pelican), ALICE’S MAGIC GARDEN (Familius), 2 PIRATES + 1 ROBOT (Kane Miller), and the ALA Notable Children’s Book, I AM SMOKE (Tilbury House), which earned a Kirkus star.

He’s written short stories for Highlights, Ladybug, Albert Whitman & Co., Blackstone Publishing, Daily Science Fiction, Metastellar, and other markets. Find him at http://www.henryherz.com

At the 2022 online ATL workshop, he will be offering add-on picture book critiques for attendees. (Find/buy any of his books here.)

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Screen Shot 2019-10-22 at 9.49.28 PMAmber Royer is the author of the high-energy comedic space opera Chocoverse series. (See all her books here.)

At the 2022 online ATL conference, Amber is offering critiques for attendees as an add-on element.

She teaches enrichment and continuing education creative writing classes for teens and adults through both the University of Texas at Arlington and Writing Workshops Dallas. She is the discussion leader for the Saturday Night Write writing craft group. She spent five years as a youth librarian, where she organized teen writers’ groups and teen writing contests. In addition to two cookbooks co-authored with her husband, Amber has published a number of articles on gardening, crafting and cooking for print and online publications.