View Full Version : Agents who rep Paranormal Mystery

07-02-2007, 02:13 PM
OK, my revision is complete and I'm ready to start sending out queries again. I noticed on Agent Query there is no category for Paranormal Mystery. does anyone have any tips on what agents look for/represent paranormal mystery? The story is about a girl who writes for a gothic soap where the main characters are a real werewolf and vampire. The werewolf is suspected of murder and she's trying to clear his name. the main character is attracted to both the werewolf and the sexy Homicide Detective with a secret.

any suggestions? Many thanks. Prior versions were rejected by Ginger Clark and Caren Johnson. I believe it's not proper to then query them again with a revision unless it was asked for, right?

Linda Adams
07-02-2007, 02:17 PM
Visit the agent's Web site and see what kinds of paranormal they've sold. That should tell you if your story is appropriate for them. You may have to submit it under urban fantasy to agents since the werewolf parts may make it hard to sell as a mystery.

09-06-2007, 09:32 AM
From what I've read, mystery readers generally don't like stories that include the paranormal or the supernatural. When you're working with elements like that, your book immediately falls into a genre. If it isn't mystery, romance, sci-fi, international espionage, action-adventure, or some other recognized genre, what is it? Unfortunately for us creative souls, publishers (and consequently agents) are quite strict with their classifications. They want to know immediately what category your manuscript falls into. The more you stray from the standard categories, the more likely they are to turn it down.

It sounds as if your book belongs in fantasy or horror. I wouldn't try to market it as a mystery--even though, from your point of view, it may be one. I would start by looking for agents who are interested in horror.

As for resubmitting your ms., don't do it unless the agent has specifically asked you to do so.

Good luck!

clara bow
09-06-2007, 06:45 PM
oooohh...BookEnds *just* blogged about this...head over there now to read the post about Jessica's suggestion to spin paranormals into/as mystery. It's under Market News. You should query her!!! good luck!

09-06-2007, 07:05 PM
Maybe call it Paranormal Thriller?


09-06-2007, 07:27 PM
I would approach agents who rep paranormal romance, whatever you call it. A lot of PR agents also rep UF, and vice versa. Lots of crossover between the genres.

The mystery angle is present in a lot of paranormal books of all stripes. Many urban fantasies are essentially P.I. stories -- the main plot often involves who is getting killed and why, though the suspects may be vampires instead of gangsters. That doesn't make them mysteries, though.

But an essential part of your book involves a female protag who is attracted to two different . . .men. Paranormal romance agents will be interested. The fact that itís also, or even mainly, a mystery is not a problem.

Mostly, agents who rep mysteries will reject at the first whiff of a werewolf.

09-09-2007, 12:41 AM
Unless yours is heavy on the romance, the genre you want is Urban Fantasy. This includes a number of writers like Jim Butcher, Rachel Caine, Marjorie M. Liu, Kim Harrison, Charlaine Harris, etc. They all have a good mystery element in their books.

I write it too, and trust me, a mystery house isn't gonna buy a paranormal. Purist mystery readers do not want what they call "the woo-woo" factor (anything supernatural) in their story. You'll need to go with a house that does like Ace, ROC, Baen, Tor, or St. Martin's.

You can try:



Or check the websites of your favorite Urban Fantasy writers to ask them if they'd mind sharing the name of their agent with you.

"Dear Ms. Harris, I'm an aspiring writer looking for an agent for my urban fantasy. Could you recommend one? BTW--I LOVE your Sookie Stackhouse series! Thank you, A. W."

Carefully check the ageny's website for submission guidelines. So many queries are rejected out of hand for just not reading and following directions!

Good luck!

Cathy C
09-09-2007, 02:06 AM
Actually, Berkley has two separate lines that publish paranormal mysteries that are actually shelved IN mystery. The Berkley Prime Crime (here's one by a friend of mine, Yasmine Galenorn (http://www.amazon.com/One-Wedding-Chintz-China-Mystery/dp/0425211177/ref=pd_bbs_sr_4/104-1132358-1452758?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1189288691&sr=8-4)) and Berkley Sensation (Annette Blair (http://www.amazon.com/Kitchen-Accidental-Trilogy-Berkley-Sensation/dp/0425198812/ref=pd_bbs_sr_2/104-1132358-1452758?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1189288768&sr=1-2) is a popular mystery author with a chick-lit flair.) They're the only ones that I've seen that consider them mysteries, though, so looking at the urban fantasy publishers is also a good thought.