What are some upcoming trends?
I think we are seeing an increasingly higher demand for representation and diversity in literature across genres, which I hope is less of a trend and more of a lasting, fundamental shift in the kinds of narratives being created and voices being heard. Especially in our current political climate, I think representation is becoming immensely important.
What book/genre/topic would you like to see cross your transom?
I’m absolutely in love with historical fiction, and I’m specifically looking for historical fiction that takes place outside of Western Europe. Min Jin Lee’s Pachinko immediately comes to mind as this fully engrossing portrait of a world I’d never been exposed to before. In general, I love family sagas, complex heroines, and a really memorable narrative voice. I’m also finding myself drawn to stories that bring in magical realism, fantasy, or horror elements in surprising ways. I’m such a Neil Gaiman fan, and his writing hits that sweet spot of combining the weird and the realistic to create a completely new and evocative experience.
How are you working with self-published writers?
I’m working with self-published writers in two capacities. Brower Literary & Management has recently started managing self-published authors’ subsidiary rights—seeking out foreign and audio deals for authors who don’t want to be traditionally published. I’m also working with two authors, Meghan Quinn and Kennedy Ryan, who want to continue publishing independently but would also like to explore their options in the world of traditional publishing.
What don’t you ever want to see again?
A book where the dog dies. I’m still getting over reading Where the Red Fern Growsin the sixth grade. I just can’t do it. Someone could hand me an absolute masterpiece, but if a dog dies in it, I’d have to bow out.
What is unique about your corner of the industry?
As a new agent, I’m still working to forge my identity and define what exactly my corner of the industry is. I love working with indie authors, but I’m mainly focusing on building my experience in traditional publishing and seeing where I can take my career in that direction. I’m constantly learning just how vast and dynamic publishing is, and the possibilities are exciting. There are a lot of options out there for authors, and I love that as a literary agent I get help them find the best home and best avenue for their work.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Publishing is, at its core, such a subjective industry, which makes it both frustrating and exciting. It’s difficult, but I also think it can be immensely rewarding, especially when working with an author you really click with.Aimee Ashcraft has recently entered the world of publishing as an associate agent at Brower Literary & Management.