Big Announcement

As of today, I am officially a Senior Literary Manager and the head of Picture Books, Middle Grade, and Young Adult at Movable Type Management! This is a wonderful new opportunity for me and I’m leaving with the full support of the Andrea Brown Literary Agency, which has been my foundation and professional home for the past three and a half years. A huge thank you to my family of former colleagues: Andrea, Laura, Caryn, Jen, Jenn, Kelly, Jennifer, Taryn, and Lara. I’ve learned so much from this amazing team of women–truly among the best in the children’s book business. I have been blessed and am so grateful to have had my start at such an amazing place.

Being in such an enviable position, however, raises its own set of questions: Where can I go from here? What’s the future of publishing and agenting? Where do I fit into the brave new world of books and content and digital? As many of you know, I spent the first six years of my professional life working at a start-up that went on to sell to Google. I grew up in the Silicon Valley. There’s a rebellious and entrepreneurial streak in my blood.

Even though I’d found a wonderful place to work, I caught myself yearning to learn more about some other elements of publishing–namely digital books and packaging–because I believe they will become more and more important in the future. I wanted to amass new skills and explore what another agency is doing–both for my future as an agent and to provide new opportunities for my clients. I wanted my years of experience as a dot.com-er to dovetail with my passion for children’s books. I wanted more of that start-up feeling in my life.

It has been an absolute joy to learn from the very best, but I know that there is no reward without risk. Now it’s time for me to evolve and join a new and like-minded team at Movable Type, a small, nimble, and entrepreneurial agency. So here’s to my new colleagues: Jason Allen Ashlock, Adam Chromy, Jamie Brenner, and Michele Matrichiani. There are so many possibilities out there in today’s publishing world, and I want to learn about them and make them happen for my clients. Plus, I want to grow! I can’t describe to you the thrill of starting a department, enriching my relationships with the children’s publishing business, finding new clients, and truly being responsible for my own enterprise within an agency. This is the kind of leadership role that I’ve been dreaming about and I couldn’t be more excited to get started.

This transition may come as a surprise to some of you. It certainly did to me when I found myself seriously considering walking away from the Andrea Brown Literary Agency. But this is the right choice, and I’m thrilled to also have the full support of my client list! That vote of confidence means the world. These last few weeks have been extremely fraught and bittersweet. There were lots of tears, but they’ve all been tears of gratitude. I am completely indebted to my colleagues, past and present, my friends, my family, my clients, my blog readers, and everyone else who has stood by me and decided to go along for the ride. As I wrote in the acknowledgments for my book: “Y’all know me–and you love me anyway!”

Now. Nitty gritty. The blog and my work for Writer’s Digest will not change. Neither will my availability for conferences and events. I’ll still write posts here every Monday and Wednesday. I’ll still teach webinars (including a children’s market overview this Thursday at 1 p.m. Eastern, click here for more information). I’ll still hang out on Twitter and Facebook. If I still owe you a Writer’s Digest critique or a response to a manuscript or query, you will still get it as soon as possible. I still have all of your submissions and correspondence.

Now, though, you can query me at Movable Type! At Andrea Brown, you had to choose from one of nine wonderful agents. In my new role, I’ll be the only one seeing the children’s queries, focusing on picture books, middle grade, and young adult. We are still tweaking the MTM website, but my new email is up and running. It’s MKole@MovableTM.com! My submission guidelines remain the same as they were at ABLA: I want to see your query letter and the first 10 pages of your novel submission or full picture book text copied and pasted into the body of your email. The word “Query” should appear somewhere in your subject line. No attachments please (illustrators send a link to an online portfolio) and no snail mail.

Thank you all for your support and I can’t wait to see what I can do over at Movable Type. I hope to see your submissions pouring in soon so that I can start my new job off with a bang!

72 Replies to “Big Announcement”

  1. Awesome news, Mary! HUGE congrats and I’ll be excited to query you at your new home when the time comes. 😉

  2. Congratulations, Mary! Best of luck to you in the new role! 🙂

  3. Jen Zeman says:

    Congratulations Mary! Sounds like an amazing opportunity!

  4. Congrats! I wish you the very best!

  5. Oh Wow!!! That is big news. So happy for you 🙂
    Best wishes on your new position.

  6. Adele Richards says:

    YEY for you! Bold but exciting move. Well done. 🙂

  7. Congrats, Mary! I’m thrilled for you and know you will accomplish amazing things in your new role. Keep shooting for the stars.


  8. Congratulations Mary! Best of luck in your new digs!

  9. GAH! That’s wonderful, exciting, fanTAStic! Congratulations, Mary. Well deserved.

  10. Congratulations, Mary! Movable Type is lucky to get you!

  11. Congratulations, Mary. I’m glad I got to meet you at Big Sur in December. I know you’ll do amazing things at Movable Type. Rock on!

  12. Cheers, Mary! Great for you and great for MTM! Best of everything to you–
    see you in NYC! – Emma

  13. Wow, that’s wonderful! Your happiness is everything. <3

  14. Wow, how exciting! Big changes/transitions of my choosing always get me giddy with motivation and energy~ what fantastic news for you and your clients 🙂

  15. Lindsey Lane says:

    You go, girl. Keep being alive!

  16. This was an announcement with a big “A”! Congratulations, Mary! It sounds like a fantastic opportunity.

  17. Charmaine Ng says:

    That’s amazing news, Mary. Congratulations! Always good to keep on learning and growing.

  18. Congrats!! I was just about to send you a query at Andrea Brown. I’m glad I read your blog! Awesome news.

  19. Congratulations on your new role! Wishing you the best of luck. Will definitely be querying you when my stories are ready.

  20. Congratulations Mary! That´s exciting news! I applaud your ambitious attitude.

  21. Great news for you! I wouldn’t be surprised if your brand new email already has a mini-slushpile 🙂

  22. Wishing you all the best in your new venture. It’s so exciting to pursue new frontiers. Sounds like you’re totally up for it! Go, you!!

  23. Shaun Hutchinson says:

    Congratulations! What a fantastic opportunity 🙂

  24. Congratulations, Mary! I’ve read your blog for years now, since before I started blogging two and a half years ago, and it remains one of the best resources for children’s writers on the web. Best of luck with your new position!

  25. Carole Lindstrom says:

    Congratulations, Mary! All the best on your new endeavor.

  26. Congratulations on the change, the job, and the oppurtunity! Sounds like an exciting job in the current market.

  27. Lori Mozdzierz says:

    Best of Luck, Mary, on your new venture!!!

  28. How the heck did I not know you came from the dotcom world?

    Congratulations. You’re staying in New York? I see MTM calls itself bicoastal, but I’m guessing the lefty side is actually closer to Hollywood than the Bay.

  29. Best of luck in your new endeavor! I am interested in the way you see digital products being of value in the future…I think that you will be on the crest of a wave of change through the agents industry….More power and balance to you on the surf board…and thanks for keeping up the blog!

  30. Congratulations, and wishing this journey brings much satisfaction to you!

  31. I have followed this blog regularly, as well as pretty much anything Jason Allen Ashlock puts up on the internet and I was bowled over by this announcement! A fantastic pairing and very good news for the Kidlit industry as a whole.

    Wishing you the very best!

    Hilary Sierpinski

  32. Terrific news Mary!! The transmedia terrain needs someone with your spunk, spirit and sensibilities.

    I’ll def. be querying a digital MG project I’m polishing in the next few months.

    Best of everything to you.

    Laurie Ashbourne

  33. Congrats on your big, daring move! I find those who make bold moves reap the rewards. Good luck!

  34. Mary Ann Duke says:

    Wonderful! So happy for you. You have worked hard and have achieved! If only students could internalize this fact.

  35. Congrats Mary! Very exciting news.

  36. Congratulations to you, Mary.

  37. Jeff Chen says:

    Congrats! What an exciting opportunity.

  38. This is fantastic news. Congratulations!

  39. Stephanie Garber says:

    Congratulations Mary! Movable Type is lucky to have you!

  40. Congratulations! That’s really terrific news.

    Can you explain the differences between MTM and more traditional agencies?

  41. Congrats! Will you change the type of materials/stories you are looking for?

  42. Julie Dietzel-Glair says:

    Congratulations! Best of luck in this new venture.

  43. BIG news for sure! It sounds like a fun and exciting opportunity! Wishing you all the best.

  44. So very happy for you Mary! Sounds like a real amazing opportunity, and I know your passion for what you do will never decrease wherever you agent from. Plus we know we can always find you here horray 🙂

  45. Wow what a surprise!! And how great for you! I admire your decision to grow and help others grow in the process. Congrats! 🙂

  46. How exciting! I’m looking forward to hearing more about your experiences as your career grows. Well done.

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