This week's Agent Spotlight features Lindsay Ribar of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates, Inc.
Status: Open to submissions.
About: “Associate agent Lindsay Ribar began her career at Greenburger Associates in 2007, working primarily with science fiction and fantasy authors. In addition to representing her own clients, she co-reps a select number of authors with senior agent Matt Bialer.
“Lindsay is actively seeking new authors of young adult and middle grade fiction, and is particularly drawn to smart paranormal romance; contemporary realistic; fantasy; soft sci-fi; mystery; and anything with elements of music, musical theatre, dual identities, and LGBT themes. Memorable characters are a must, and great writing trumps all.
“A graduate of New York University and the Columbia Publishing Course, Lindsay is also an author of young adult fiction, and is represented by Greenburger Associates.” (Link)
About the Agency:
“Founded in 1932 by Sanford J. Greenburger, the agency initially specialized in representing European writers and publishers in the United States and internationally.
“Sanford Greenburger, together with his wife, Ingrid, pioneered editorial scouting, creating a business advising European publishers as to which American writers to translate and publish. Among the agency’s earliest clients were Sartre, Simone de Beauvoir, Franz Kafka, and Antoine de Saint-Exupéry.
“The current era for Greenburger Associates began in 1972, when Francis Greenburger assumed management of the business his parents founded. The agency was converted into an agents’ collaborative, which today comprises eight senior agents, three associate agents, and an international rights department, and includes an affiliated business, the Nicholas Ellison Agency. Among the scores of authors who got their start at Greenburger Associates are James Patterson, Nicholas Sparks, Dave Eggers, and Daniel Amen, M.D. Greenburger Associates now represents such global bestselling authors and artists as Dan Brown, Robin Preiss Glasser, Christopher Moore, Patrick Rothfuss, and Brad Thor. Also among the agency’s current clients are writers of fiction, non-fiction, genre books, and original ebooks; author and artists of children’s books; and a small number of poets and essayists.
“After celebrating the eightieth anniversary of its founding in 2012, Greenburger Associates is well-positioned for the future. ‘We embrace all media and we execute state-of-the-art publishing strategies for our authors,’ says Francis Greenburger. “Print books and ebooks, of course. Deals for first-time authors; complicated contracts for worldwide bestsellers. We place our clients’ needs first, and we help our clients capitalize on their talent – in print, digitally, on the big screen, internationally – wherever their talent can be marketed.” (Link)
What She's Looking For:
Genres / Specialties:
Middle grade, young adult, and the rare adult fiction project.
From an Interview (12/2013):
“I do see some of this, but I’d really love to see more contemporary non-speculative YA. I do adore the speculative (paranormal, fantasy, SF) stuff, don’t get me wrong – but I’d like to find a great contemporary book or two as well.” (Link)
From an Interview (10/2013):
“What I’m looking for right now: character-driven YA and MG with deadly secrets, high stakes, realistic character relationships (this goes for friendship and romance), and killer dialogue. Bonus points for music- and theater-related stuff, and extra bonus points for LGBTQ characters.
“…but I’m still looking for good stories about ghosts, werewolves, mermaids/sirens, small-town magic (think Nova Ren Suma’s Imaginary Girls, April Genevieve Tucholke’s Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, or even that movie Practical Magic), or cool systems of magic that you made up on your morning commute one day.” (Link)
From an Interview (08/2013):
“Right now, I’m looking mostly for YA and middle grade, with an emphasis on fantasy rooted in the real world, horror, mysteries/thrillers, and LGBT books that aren’t ‘Coming Out 101.’” (Link)
Via Twitter (2013-2014):
“#MSWL of the day: A YA novel with an Irish setting that DOESN'T involve faeries.” (Link)
“#MSWL I really want to see more contemp YA set in unusual/hidden places. Cults, for example.” (Link)
“#MSWL I'd love to see YA non-fantasy romance with a bisexual and/or genderqueer main character. MAIN character, not best friend!” (Link)
“#MSWL I'd really love to find a kickass non-fantasy YA thriller.” (Link)
“I'm really in the mood for a book with weird, small-town magic (as opposed to Worldwide Underground Society). Think ‘Practical Magic.’#MSWL” (Link)
“My #MSWL (manuscript wishlist) for YA: fantasy that feels grounded, sibling stories, LGBT that's not focused on coming out.” (Link)
“My #MSWL for MG: unforgettable characters, writing that doesn't talk down to its readers, weird-next-door-neighbor stories.” (Link)
“I'm also looking for Stephanie Perkins-esque YA contemp romance, and Kendare Blake-esque YA horror. #MSWL” (Link)
From an Interview (06/2012):
“My tastes are very SFF-centric too, but I recently sold a beautiful literary novel to a small press (HERSELF WHEN SHE’S MISSING, coming in June 2012 from Soft Skull), so I suppose you never know what’s going to catch my fancy. Right now, I am specifically looking for YA and middle grade. I like fantasy, paranormal romance, horror, comtemporary realistic, and anything with non-preachy LGBT content. I’m not big on ‘issues books’ but, again, you never know.” (Link)
What She Isn't Looking For:
“I’m open to considering most things, but genres I don’t represent include religious fiction, picture books, political or legal thrillers, and most non-fiction. Also, I’ll be honest: I’m not terribly keen on elves or dragons.” (Link)
“You’re very unlikely to grab my attention with dragons, elves, vampires, angels, faeries, or systems of magic that rely on Capitalizing All The Things or spellyng thynges strangelie to make them look unyque…” (Link)
“…my M.O. is always to get each manuscript into the best possible shape before sending it out to editors--no matter how many rounds of revisions it takes.” (Link)
There is a page of Ms. Ribar’s clients on the agency website. Clients include:
E-mail: Yes (only).
Submission Guidelines (always verify):
Send a query letter in the body of an e-mail and the first three chapters as an attachment to the e-mail address on Ms. Ribar’s website page.
See the Greenburger Associates website for complete, up-to-date submission guidelines.
“Due to the high volume of submissions that Lindsay receives, she is unable to respond personally to each individual query. If you do not hear back within eight weeks, it means that Lindsay is declining the opportunity to represent your work.” (Link)
Stats on the web appear consistent with this timeframe.
What's the Buzz?
Lindsay Ribar has been with Greenburger Associates since 2007 when she landed a job as Matt Bialer’s assistant. While still assisting, Ms. Ribar has a small client list of her own and has made a handful of sales.
I recommend following her on Twitter @LindsayRibar for the latest.
Worth Your Time:
Agent Interview: Lindsay Ribar of Greenburger Associates at Alexa Donne YA Author (12/2013).
The Slush Pile -Behind the Scenes-- with Lindsay Ribar at 3 Boys and a Novel (10/2013).
Interview with an Agent: Lindsay Ribar at Mother. Write. (Repeat.) (08/2013).
Chat [transcript] with editors Andrew Harwell, Sarah Dotts Barley, and agent Lindsay Ribar at WriteOnCon (08/2013).
SJGA Agent/Author Lindsay Ribar at Novelists, Inc. (06/2012).
Lindsay Ribar Interview at Jay Kristoff’s site (02/2011).
Interview: Lindsay Ribar at The Magic District (11/2009).
Interview with Lindsay Ribar - Literary Agent's Assistant at Welcome to the Maze (03/2008).
Around the Web:
Sanford J. Greenburger Associates thread on AbsoluteWrite.
Middle Grade Memories: Author/Agent Lindsay Ribar at Claire Legrand’s site (08/2012).
Please see the Greenburger Associates website for additional contact and query information.
Last Updated: 3/20/14.
Last Reviewed By Agent? 3/20/14.
Have any experience with this agent? See something that needs updating? Please leave a comment or e-mail me at agentspotlight(at)gmail(dot)com
Note: These agent profiles presently focus on agents who accept children's/teen fiction. They are not interviews. Please take the time to verify anything you might use here before querying. The information found herein is subject to change.