Friday, November 16, 2012

YA Agent Highlight: Michael Bourret

Michael Bourret of Dystel and Goderich Literary Management

Michael Bourret is another top-ranked young adult agent. While studying film and television production at New York University, he joined DGLM as an intern. He started working full-time as an agent in 2000, and after agenting in New York for ten years, he opened the Los Angeles branch of DGLM. 

Mr. Bourret's online presence seems to be active, friendly, and professional. In an interview with author Laurie Thompson, Michael highlights what he loves about agenting: "I like that every day is different. I like pitching to editors, I like discussing ideas with clients, I love finding new voices. I love building relationships and matching authors and editors. I like discussing big-picture ideas with my colleagues, both in-house at DGLM and with the publishing world at large on Twitter and through our blog. It’s hard to say that I don’t like a part of my job, but I don’t like how long things take. I’m really impatient. I don’t have any major publishing pet peeves, but I do wish we could all be more kind and respectful. It’s a challenging business, and emotions run high, but we need to remember that we’re all in it together."


He represents MG, YA, and commercial adult fiction as well as nonfiction ranging from practical to narrative. His client list includes bestselling and award-winning authors.  

Looking for:

From the DGLM website: "(Michael)’s especially interested in food and cocktail related books, memoir, popular history, politics, religion (though not spirituality), popular science, and current events. And if you’ve got something on bourbon or tennis, even better."

In an interview with GalleyCat, Mr. Bourret said, "It’s hard to say what I’m not getting – I get a lot! But I’d love to see more humor. Not “humor books,” but rather novels with humorous stories, especially in middle grade and YA. I like funny, and I don’t see enough of it."

Just last month, in an interview with Lit Stack, Mr. Bourret said, "Editors are asking for contemporary, realistic stories more now than ever before. The paranormal and dystopian trends are waning, and there seems to be a desire to get back to telling compelling stories about real people.  I can’t say I’m unhappy about it!"


Sara Zarr, Heather Brewer, Lisa McMann, Anne Rockwell, Molly Wizenberg, Rhoda Janzen, James Dashner, Tony Mantuano, A.J. Rathbun, Brad Thomas Parsons, and more.


 Michael has reported 11 deals to Publishers Marketplace in the last year, 6 of those for young adult works. Most of his deals are with major publishing houses. 

To query:

 Michael only accepts emailed queries. DGLM guidelines ask for a query, synopsis, and the first chapter.
Send queries to mbourret(at)dystel(dot)com

For a look at a query that caught Michael's interest, check out this installment of Chuck Sambuchino's "Successful Queries."

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