We will update this Speaker page as time progresses.
Justin Brouckaert is a literary agent with Aevitas Creative Management.
At the 2023 MWW, Justin is teaching speeches. He is also meeting with attendees for in-person one-on-one pitches.
Justin is a Metro Detroit native who holds an MFA in fiction from the University of South Carolina, where he was a James Dickey Fellow. As an agent, he is interested in literary fiction, memoir, narrative nonfiction, and select illustrated and prescriptive works.
In fiction, he is most interested in novels that are driven by flawed, magnetic characters; novels with innovate structures; novels that engage with the wide world of sports; and novels that are set in the Midwest.
In nonfiction, he is most interested in memoirs that offer access to exclusive places and experiences, as well as reported narratives that shed light on under-represented people and communities.
Kristin Bartley Lenz is a writer and social worker who has lived in Michigan, Georgia, and California.
At the 2023 in-person MWW, she is teaching classes. She is also offering add-on in-person critiques for attendees.
Her debut young adult novel, The Art of Holding On and Letting Go, was a Helen Sheehan YA Book Prize winner, a Junior Library Guild Selection, and a Great Lakes Great Books Award honor book. Her writing has been published in a YA poetry anthology (Rhyme & Rhythm: Poems for Student Athletes), The New York Times, Writer’s Digest, Hunger Mountain, Lunch Ticket, Michigan Reading Journal, Great Lakes Review, Literary Mama, Women On Writing and more. She also writes freelance for Detroit area nonprofits, teaches creative writing for teens and adults, and escapes to the woods and lakes in northern Michigan whenever she can.
Linda S. Glaz is a literary agent with the Linda S. Glaz Literary Agency, serving the Christian and General Markets.
At the 2023 in-person Michiagn WW, Linda is teaching a class. She is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one pitch meetings.
My goal as an agent is to connect authors to those publishers seeking inspirational or clean reads, whether that be in the Christian or general market.
What do I mean when I say I seek “clean reads”? Books that anyone can read without blushing, without cringing, and without having to skip over the parts you wouldn’t want your kids to see. My clients write without graphic sexuality or profanity, yet their stories resonate with readers anxious for the conflict, tension, and characters who live in the pages of their books.
Linda is a generalist, and open to almost all kinds of novels/genres and nonfiction books that can be deemed a “clean read” (no profanity, no graphic sexuality). That said, please note that she does not handle children’s books of any kind nor speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy). Nonfiction pitches to her should be by authors with solid platforms.
About Linda: Well, it’s not a secret. I worked for the most amazing literary agency for the last thirteen years, but after the announcement of its closure in August of 2022, and with the encouragement of my ex-bosses, I made the decision to form the Linda S. Glaz Literary Agency. With a huge GULP and overall peace about the decision, I began to put the pieces into place. It’s beyond exciting when a debut author receives an offer for publication, and I’m always thrilled to be part of that moment. I hope to help launch more careers as I move forward.
And now, I wake up every single morning pinching myself to be sure I really have this amazing career. I love helping authors realize their dreams! I also teach nationally to help writers attain new levels of success in their craft, so watch for me at a conference near you. Or better yet, invite me to share at your conference on an array of topics from Are You Writing What You’re Called to Write? to Deep Deep POV, and more cutting-edge topics to help authors take their work to the next level. I would love it if you considered being part of this journey with me.
Michelle McGill Vargas is an author. At the 2023 Michigan event, she is offering add-on virtual manuscript critiques for attendees, and the meetings are in person at the event.
“I am writer of speculative historical fiction, flash fiction, and short fiction. I’ve published in The Lutheran Witness, Splickety Magazine, The Copperfield Review, and Typehouse Literary Magazine. I’ve also contributed at Short Fiction Break and Noir Expressions.
“I’m currently represented by the amazing Melissa Danaczko of Stuart Krichevsky Literacy Agency, Inc. I pay the bills as a teacher of deaf and hard of hearing. I’m a member of Highland Writers Group, Valparaiso Writers Group, served as vice-president of the Indiana Writer’s Consortium and chair of its 2016 Steel Pen Conference, and am currently on the board of Midwest Writers.”
Rachel Beck, literary agent, joined Liza Dawson Associates in 2020 after working at a boutique literary agency for 4 years.
She has been in the publishing industry since 2009 and worked at Harlequin editing romance novels for nearly 6 years before transitioning her skills to the agent world in order to be an advocate and champion for authors. She lives outside of Pittsburgh with her husband, two young sons, and an endlessly entertaining cat.
At the 2023 in-person MWW, Rachel is meeting with attendees for one-on-one pitch meetings. She is also teaching a class.
Learn more about what kind of books Rachel seeks here.
Anna Harrington is A USA Bestselling and RITA nominated author of spicy Regency romances.
At the 2023 MWW, Anna is offering add-on virtual manuscript critiques for attendees.
Anna fell in love with historical romance—and all those dashing Regency heroes—while living in London, where she studied literature and theatre. She has published award-winning books with Hachette, St. Martin’s Press, and Sourcebooks, and her novels have been translated into multiple languages including Italian, French, and Japanese. Anna loves to travel, fly airplanes, and ballroom dance, and when she isn’t busy writing her next novel, she can usually be found in her garden. She loves all things chocolate and tea, is a Doctor Who fanatic, and hopes to one day use her oven for something other than shoe storage.
Shelli R. Johannes is the author of 18 books (out and forthcoming). She is the coauthor (with Kimberly Derting) of the popular CECE LOVES SCIENCE series and PENNY (An Engineering Tale of the Fourth Pig). In addition to her tween and teen novels, she is also the author of the THEO THESAURUS series and SHINE LIKE A UNICORN. Her new chapter book in Chelsea Clinton’s “She Persisted” series on FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE comes out in March 2023. See all her kids books here and all her teen novels here.
At the 2023 Michigan WW, Shelli is teaching a speech on how to utilize both traditionally publishing and self-publishing. She is also offering add-on virtual manuscript critiques for attendees.
Shelli can often be found on highways and country roads saving strays and other jaywalking critters or volunteering with animal conservation groups. After earning a master’s to follow her passion of writing.
She lives in Atlanta with her own pack of unicorns: a British husband, two teens, two Goldendoodles, one sassy bird, and the many loud characters that “live” in her head. Shelli is addicted to exclamation points, puns, unicorns, and anything sciencey. You can always count on her to laugh at her own jokes, at least once.
Cyle Young is a literary agent and founder of CYLE Literary Elite. At the 2023 in-person MWW, Cyle is teaching a class. He is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one pitches.
Cyle is seeking:
- YA, middle grade, and chapter books
- genre fiction, especially romance
- love stories
- speculative (sci-fi and fantasy)
- easy readers, picture books and board books
- nonfiction (parenting, leadership, ministry, and self-help)
- movie and screenplays (specific details at cyleyoung.com)
Cyle is a multiple-genre award-winning author. Winner of more than twenty writing awards, he considers himself a “binge writer” and routinely scribes 30,000 words in a weekend. His book Belly Buttons and Broken Hearts released with Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas in 2013.
Cyle finds great joy in writing and loves to bounce between crafting epic high fantasy tales, helpful non-fiction parenting books, and getting lost in the melodic rhythm of children’s poetry. He serves as managing editor of almostanauthor.com, a website devoted to helping aspiring writers become published authors, and is also a monthly contributor to the parenting website, just18summers.com, and the writing website, thewriteconversation.blogspot.com.
You can learn more about what genres Cyle is acquiring by visiting his website at cyleyoung.com.
Brian A. Klems (@BrianKlems) is the former online editor of WritersDigest.com. He is current the director of Writing Day Workshops.
He is the coordinator of the 2023 in-person Michigan Writing Workshop. At the event, he is offering add-on query critiques 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.