Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Wishin’ and hopin’ and thinkin’…

by Miriam

The year is winding to a close and as some of us immerse ourselves in lists of 2010’s greatest hits, I’m thinking ahead to 2011 and pondering what I’d like to see more of in that prime number year. In no particular order, I want:

Really good historical fiction. You know, like The Alienist or I, Claudius or The White Queen or The Crimson Petal and the Whitethe kind of thing that totally transports you to another era, giving you insights into the lives of the characters, and the cultural mores and political imperatives they were subject to, while also thoroughly immersing you in a transfixing story.

A memoir that makes one individual’s journey mirror the preoccupations, experiences, fears and fantasies many, if not most of us, share. Oh, and if that could come with a funny, self-aware but not self-important, charming protagonist whose life I don’t mind being wrapped up in for 300 pages, that’d be great too.

Gripping science narratives. I was browsing in a book store the other day and came across The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee. I stopped to read so long that I was almost late to my appointment. Dr. Mukherjee grabbed my interest from the very first line and I’m his new biggest fan. I’d like to see more of the kind of writing and storytelling that brings scientific or medical topics to life and creates characters out of concepts or ideas.

A political book that explains what’s going on in our crazy republic. Let’s face it, we have some pretty colorful characters running the country (or trying to) these days and I find myself frequently as baffled as entertained by their antics. I’d love to see someone put it all in some kind of historical perspective while analyzing what it is about us (and them) that would make the founding fathers throw up their hands and head to Vegas.

An edge-of-your-seat, can’t-put-it-down, scary-suspenseful-sexy thriller with a hero/heroine who’d give Jack Reacher a run for his money.

Is that too much to ask? What’ve you guys got?


  1. Miriam,

    How do you feel about a re-query after a piece of work has gone through a major revamp? I originally submitted to you in August and since then have been improving and lengthening the work in question.
    Unfortunately, I submitted the work to you prematurely, due to a lack of publishing education and patients in myself. However, I have learned to take more time with a project and how the publishing process works.
    Please let me know if a second look would be worth submitting for after the work is completed.

    P.S. I hope to be able to meet one of the above criteria.

  2. A book about a female Jack Reacher??? Someone needs to write that please!

  3. M.A., I'd be happy to take a look at your revised work. I don't know about other agencies but we're usually open to considering something once it's been revised and polished. Sometimes the second or third time's the charm. Jennifer, I second that emotion!

  4. Nice to read your wish-list, Miriam. I queried you on Nov. 11 regarding a memoir I have ready to go, so maybe it will be something you're looking for. (Teri Carter)

    Either way, I wish all of you at DGLM a peaceful holiday. I can't believe it's already December.

  5. I'd love to get more into historical fiction again next year, so if you come across any more really good ones, let us know!

    I haven't read The Emperor of All Maladies, but it sounds like something that'd be right up my alley. I'd love more good SF that balances really outrageous ideas, scientific detail, and a focus on the personal effects those ideas/events have on a well-developed group of characters.

    Also hoping for sequels to some of my favorite books that are part one of their series...

  6. Oooh, I love agent lists! Miriam, how would you feel about a book that has female protags and combines a present day suspense with ancient historical?

    And I agree -- the world needs a female Jack Reacher!

  7. Kristin, if you love historicals, then I'd try Michelle Moran. She's amazing.

  8. Alli, I'm game. Send it on.


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