Literary Agent Sarah N. Fisk

This page was last updated on 6/6/23.

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Sarah N. Fisk is a literary agent at the Tobias Literary Agency, representing all genres in Middle Grade and Young Adult as well as adult science-fiction, fantasy, and romance. Sarah is a former mechanical engineer who made the switch to publishing in 2011. They have worked in the publishing industry as an editorial assistant, author’s assistant, publicist, and art director. Sarah is a former Pitch Wars mentor, board member, and Agent Liaison. They host the podcast Queries, Qualms, & Quirks and are one of the founding members of Disability in Publishing.



  • Young Adult (all fiction genres)
  • Middle Grade (all fiction genres)
  • Adult Romance
  • Adult Science Fiction, Fantasy, and everything under the speculative fiction umbrella except hard, genre horror
  • Select Adult nonfiction

Particular Areas of Interest:

  • atmospheric fantasies or contemporary stories that feel like atmospheric fantasies
  • speculative mysteries or mysteries woven into other genres
  • books that challenge societal norms, especially gender norms
  • personal interest in stories featuring queer characters
  • personal interest in characters with disability, neurodiversity, chronic illness, or mental health challenges
  • great or complicated sibling relationships (think: siblings who will kill for each other or kill each other (or both!))
  • authentic small town, southern, or midwestern settings
  • intriguing villains
  • characters I can’t get out of my head
  • smart heroines
  • con artists who are not cis men
  • books that are compulsively readable
  • social justice issues woven into commercial plots
  • themes: anticapitalist, pro-labor, conservationism, anti-disaster capitalism, etc

For Adult SFF

  • I especially love grounded fantasy and near-future sci-fi.
  • I am particularly looking for books with a strong hook and plot, but also very strong writing (aka upmarket SFF)
  • No Military Sci-Fi, please
  • Not for me: anything that could comp Game of Thrones or a Memory Called Empire

For Adult Romance

  • Pretty much all subgenres that are traditionally published
    • but historical needs to have a high concept, a nice hook, and/or a great voice for me
  • I prefer romance books with a medium or high heat level, or a lot of sexual tension
  • No pregnancy or baby-based storylines, please (it’s not triggering, I’m just not interested!)
  • Romance has a happy romantic ending, by definition

For nonfiction

  • Primarily interested in books with a social justice angle, progressive thought leadership OR
  • Books that provide a new perspective on culture, food, current affairs, finance, food, history, science, nature, or relationships.
  • Author platform is very important
  • Especially interested in disabled or neurodiverse creators, especially those writing from an intersectional lens
  • If the book could’ve been an older You’re Wrong About episode, I’d like to see it
  • Other areas of interest: scam/fraud, capitalism, labor interests, chronic illness, environmental/climate change, cryptids, non-murder mysteries, relationship equity, or books that make me FASCINATED with a topic I previously didn’t care about (a la THE JOY OF SWEAT)
  • Nos: parenting, religion, memoirs without one of the first two bullet points.

Not for me:

  • Hardcore genre horror (horror elements are ok! Horror in MG is great)
  • I am not interested in stories that center around who gets to rule an empire
  • I cannot read stories that center around sexual assault or have on-the-page rape scenes
  • Graphic Novels
  • Portal fantasies unless it’s really unique
  • Stories set in recent historical times (80s, 90s, aughts) need to have a solid reason for the time period for me
  • Any adult genres not listed above (i.e. non-speculative books need to be genre romance. other adult genres that “have a romance” are not for me.)
  • Disabled characters who serve solely as an able-bodied main character’s catalyst.
  • If the main motivation is related to being a parent, it’s probably not for me.
  • Romances between a minor and a non-minor that are not critiqued on-the-page

Submission Instructions

If your book sounds like something I would like, please submit via this form. If you’re not sure if your book would be a fit, as long as it fits in the “Basics” section, go ahead and submit!

Submission Materials include:

  • Metadata
    • Title
    • Genre
    • Wordcount
    • Name
    • Email
    • Everything else is optional
  • Query
  • Synopsis
    • should tell what happens in the entire story from beginning to end, including all spoilers and twists.
    • A synopsis is different from the description used in the query.
    • 1 to 2 single-spaced pages is an ideal length, but use the space you need
  • First three chapters
    • If you have a chapter-length prologue, consider that one of the three. If it is a short prologue (2 pages or less), still include 3 additional chapters
    • If you don’t have chapters, submit 25 manuscript pages.
  • Content warnings (there is a separate field for this)

For non-fiction: place the query/cover letter in the Query section, the Chapter Outline in the Synopsis section, and all other proposal materials in the Sample section.

All materials are copy and pasted into the form.

I assume that all submissions are simultaneous. There is no need to inform me of full requests from other agents. Please inform me if you have received an offer of representation from another agent.

My profile at the Tobias Agency website

Goodreads list of books that are very much my taste | Goodreads list of books I’ve sold

Twitter | My MSWL Tweets

Manuscript Wishlist

Successful queries from Queries, Qualms, & Quirks



What honorific (Mr., Ms., etc) do you prefer?

I very highly prefer no honorific. Feel free to address correspondence to me using my first name.

Do you take previously published books?

It’s not a hard no, but to take on a previously published book it essentially has to be one of the best books I’ve ever read in my life. If you have something new, please submit that instead.

I submitted but made a mistake. What should I do?

If you make a small mistake, there is no need to message me about it! We all make mistakes and I will not hold it against you. If you make a big mistake, like forgetting to copy your pages in, please withdraw and resubmit. (I will also not hold that against you.)

Are comp titles required to submit to you?

They are not required, but if you have some, they can be helpful. To me, comps can be most helpful when it’s the type where your book “feels like” or will be enjoyed by the same readers as your comp.

Do you expect the query letters to be personalized to you?

There is no need to personalize queries to me. However, if your book has an element listed in my particular areas of interest, please do mention it!

Do I have to disclose my marginalized identity(s) in the query?

Absolutely not. However, if you do, I will not disclose it to anyone else without your direct consent and I will never pressure you to disclose it to anyone.

Do you prefer to have metadata at the beginning or end of the query?

To be clear, this will never impact my decision, but I do prefer it at the beginning. But no worries at all if it’s at the end! Author bio, if included, should always be at the end for fiction.

How long should I wait to hear back on a query? Do you respond to all queries?

I respond to all queries and am currently running at about a 6-week response time. I occasionally tweet about where I am in my inbox, which people also add to my Query Tracker page. There is no need to nudge me unless I’ve said I’m past a certain date and you submitted before then.

Can I resubmit if I’ve made significant revisions?

Yes. Please indicate this in your query letter, so I don’t think it’s an accidental resubmission of the same material.

Can I email/DM/message you to ask if a project might be a good fit for you before querying?

No. If it fits these guidelines, please just submit a query via the form. I will not respond to pre-queries.

Would you be interested in speaking/teaching/taking pitches at conferences and workshops?

I’m very much an extrovert and love speaking, teaching, taking questions, and taking pitches at conferences. Please email me if you would like to invite me to yours.


If you need help filling out the query manager form, or need to submit via email instead, due to a disability, please don’t hesitate to email me. If you do not need help with accessibility, do not use this email address for query updates or questions — use QueryManager to send these notes.

Upcoming Events

7/6-9 – Sleuthfest – Boca Raton, FL

7/27-30 – The Muse and the Marketplace – Virtual

10/6 – Querying an Agent at James River Writers – Virtual

10/20-22 – Surrey International Writers’ Conference – Surrey, British Columbia, Canada


May 19, 2023 – Book Sale

2021 School Library Journal Co-Librarian of the Year Amanda Jones’s THAT LIBRARIAN, a David-and-Goliath story of a Louisiana librarian’s battle against book banning, offering a look at the onslaught of harassment she faced and her courageous decision to fight back, to Anton Mueller at Bloomsbury, for publication in 2024, by Sarah Fisk at The Tobias Literary Agency (world English).

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April 2023 – Literary Agents of Change Mentorship

I was selected as a mentee for the AALA’s Literary Agents of Change mentorship program.

February 24, 2023 – Book Sale

Erin Luken’s debut OUR SHATTERED MASKS, about a magical thief who cons her way onto an exclusive enchanted island for her biggest heist yet: stealing the source of all magic; but something sinister is happening behind the island’s enchantments—and she might not survive the magic long enough to steal it, to Camille Kellogg at Bloomsbury Children’s, for publication in fall 2024, by Sarah Fisk at The Tobias Literary Agency (world).

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January 3, 2023 – Book Sale

Jenn P. Nguyen’s JUST ANOTHER MEET CUTE, about a girl who tries to track down the boy who saved her from a disastrous hike and succeeds, only to figure out too late she’s dating the wrong twin, to Jennifer Thompson at Scholastic, for publication in summer 2025, by Sarah Fisk and Natascha Morris at The Tobias Literary Agency (world English).

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October 20, 2022 – Book Sale

Debut author Caitlin Rozakis’s DREADFUL, a high fantasy farce in which a man wakes up in in a dread lord’s destroyed lab with no memories only to discover he’s the evil wizard and must play along with his own nefarious plan, to George Sandison at Titan Books, for publication in April 2024, by Sarah Fisk at The Tobias Literary Agency (world English).

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September 20, 2022 – Promotion

Promoted from Assistant Literary Agent to Associate Literary Agent

July 19, 2022 – Book Sale

Caldecott Award-winning WE ARE WATER PROTECTORS author Carole Lindstrom’s two untitled books, the first a debut middle grade which features life on the prairie from the perspective of a young Metis girl who assists as a spy against the government, in order to save her people’s land and way of life, to Mary Kate Castellani at Bloomsbury Children’s, in a two-book deal, for publication in 2024 and 2025, by Natascha Morris and Sarah Fisk at The Tobias Literary Agency (world).