From First Draft to Bookshelves: Perspectives on Publishing from a Writer, Literary Agent and Editor

Posted in: Alumni Career Services- Oct 18, 2015 Comments Off on From First Draft to Bookshelves: Perspectives on Publishing from a Writer, Literary Agent and Editor

Online Webinar
Tuesday, October 27, 2015, 12:30 – 1:30pm

Register Here:…

*Co-Sponsored by the Georgetown Entertainment & Media Alliance*

Calling all aspiring authors, agent-seeking writers, and others curious about the behind-the-scenes mechanics of the publishing industry. Join this in-depth conversation among writer Lee Kelly (C'02), her literary agent Adriann Ranta, and her editor at Simon & Schuster, Navah Wolfe. Lee, Adriann, and Navah will unveil the process by which a manuscript goes from first draft to bookshelves, with each presenter providing tips, suggestions and advice from her own wheelhouse:

-Lee will share her experience as a first-time author, focusing on how she shaped her initial draft of City of Savages into a manuscript that caught her agent’s eye. She’ll cover revision tips and strategies, as well as how and when to join a critique group, the importance of beta readers, query tips, and her favorite resources on writing, revising, and shopping a manuscript.

-Next, Adriann will provide her perspective as a senior literary agent actively acquiring new projects across all audiences and genres. She’ll give insight on what she personally looks for in a new project and client, her do’s and don’ts regarding querying agents, what happens once she signs an author, and how she selects and approaches editors with a new project.

-Lastly, Navah will give her expert editorial take, including what she looks for in a manuscript submission, what kind of projects she’s acquiring at Simon & Schuster right now and how the acquisition process actually works, what happens to a manuscript once she acquires it, and her techniques for bringing her manuscripts to the next level.

About the Presenters:
Lee Kelly is an alumnus of Georgetown University (College 2002) and NYU Law School (2008).  She is the author of CITY OF SAVAGES and the forthcoming A CRIMINAL MAGIC (2016), both from Simon & Schuster’s new speculative fiction imprint, Saga Press.  An entertainment lawyer by trade, Lee has practiced law in Los Angeles and New York.  She lives with her husband Jeff, their son Penn, and their family’s newest addition, Summer – so everyone currently feels blessed but sleep-deprived.  Lee is represented by Adriann Ranta of Wolf Literary Services, and you can visit her at

Adriann Ranta is senior agent and vice president at Wolf Literary Services.  She represents New York Times bestselling, award-winning authors, journalists, illustrators and graphic novelists, as well as actors, stuntwomen, makeup artists, and many other pioneering creative thinkers and leaders in their fields.  She is actively acquiring all genres for all age groups with a penchant for edgy, dark, quirky voices, unique settings, and everyman stories told with a new spin. She loves gritty, realistic, true-to-life stories with conflicts based in the real world; women’s fiction and nonfiction; accessible, pop nonfiction in science, history, and craft; and smart, fresh, genre-bending works for children.  She lives in Brooklyn with her sadistically talkative cat Piggy, has many tattoos, and is an evangelical fan of the X-Files.

Navah Wolfe is an editor at Saga Press, Simon & Schuster’s new science fiction and fantasy imprint. She loves books with characters that steal your heart, and stories that stay with you long after the last page is turned.  She is always on the lookout for fresh, innovative genre fiction, character-driven novels with a commercial hook, clever, gorgeous books that get under your skin, and stories that make us question our place in the world.  She was previously an editor at Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, where she worked on many bestselling books, including some that have won awards such as the Printz Honor, The Pura Belpré Award, The Pen/Faulkner Award, The Stonewall Award, the Lambda Literary Award, and the Schneider Family Award.

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