FAQ

What is Quill Shift Literary Agency?
Quill Shift Literary Agency is a boutique literary agency that represents the intellectual property rights of writers of quality books that provide children and young adults with long-lasting value and entertainment. The Agency does this by providing services that include editorial consultation, contract negotiation, sub-rights sales, and business management in order to allow the client to focus on writing marketable and well-written literature. 
Who does Quill Shift Literary Agency Represent?
Quill Shift Literary Agency represents authors of children’s literature ranging from picture books to middle grade to YA. At this time Quill Shift Literary Agency does not represent illustrators, although we are always looking for artists for the cover art of the manuscripts we put up on the website. If you are interested in being a Quill Shift Literary Agency Cover Artist, please go to the question, I’m a children’s book illustrator. Why don’t you like me?
Why the name Quill Shift?
Merriam Webster Dictionary provides an apt definition of the word shift. 1) to change or to cause (something) to change to a different opinion, belief, etc. and 2) a change in how something is done or how people think about something. At Quill Shift Literary Agency we respect tradition, the written word, the publishing process, and print copies of books, thus Quill. However, we also understand that the publishing industry is digitally shifting and expanding as more and more people are turning towards self-publishing as the answer to their writing dreams. There is a greater need than ever to cultivate savvy writers, to provide them with resources to grow and flourish, and to connect them with readers who will most appreciate their works. That is where Shift comes in.
What are shifters?
Quill Shift Literary Agency wants readers to determine which authors and their projects we represent. We call these gladiators who take back their reading experience Shifters.
Can anyone be a shifter?
Yes! No matter if you’re based in the United States or not, or if you consider yourself a publishing industry insider, or if you just like to read books in your spare time, you can participate and be a Shifter. Before you sign up under the Readers tab at the top of the page, please make sure you read and understand Quill Shift Literary Agency’s Terms of  Service and Privacy Policies.
I'm writing a children's book. How do I submit?
Please hover over the Authors tab at the top of the screen and click Submissions Guidelines. That page will outline exactly what Quill Shift Literary Agency is looking to represent and, at the bottom, provides a link to the author submissions form.
I'm a children's book illustrator. Why don't you like me?
We do like illustrators. We think they are amazingly talented (and wish many days for that talent to rub off on us). Unfortunately, at this time Quill Shift Literary Agency only represents writers of children’s and young adult fiction.  We hope someday soon to expand into illustration as well. That being said, Quill Shift is always looking for amazing artists to create enticing covers for its authors to display on the pre-publication platform & buzz creation machine. If you would like to be a Quill Shift Literary Agency Cover Artist, please submit through the form below.

Cover Artist Submissions

How long will it take for me to get a response after I submit?
Every submission submitted in the manner outlined in the submissions guidelines will receive an automatic response confirming receipt of a writer’s work. Even though we try to respond personally to every single submission, we do not guarantee a response. If Quill Shift Literary Agency is interested in discussing representation with an author, we will e-mail the writer within 6 weeks of receipt of the submission via the e-mail provided on the form to discuss our interest and next steps.
What are the next steps after Quill Shift Literary Agency Shows Interest?
There will be a conversation between the writer and a Quill Shift Literary Agency agent. During that conversation the discussion will cover the process of the Agency, the rationale behind the process, the writer’s long-term and short-term goals, and the editorial thoughts that came to mind to the agent when reading the work. If that conversation goes well, and both parties would like to work with each other, a contract with Quill Shift Literary Agency will be sent to the author for their review and signature.
What is pre-publication platform and buzz creation?
Publishers are bombarded with manuscripts everyday. It doesn’t just end with the editor liking an author’s work. The marketing and sales teams get a say in the acquisition of a book, too. That means they’ll have concerns about who the target readers will be, how will they promote the author and the book (and how much will that cost), etc. Not having approval from all departments could stop a book in its acquisitions tracks.

 

The pre-publication platform and buzz creation that Quill Shift does will answer those questions for marketing and sales teams before they even have the manuscript in their hands. Through Quill Shift’s social media presence and the crowdfunding component done for specific books, there will already be a lively community built to support a Quill Shift Literary Agency author’s work.

What is the crowdfunding component to Quill Shift Literary Agency?
Once an author signs with Quill Shift Literary Agency, and both author and the agent decide together that the pre-publication platform and buzz creation is the best way to jump-start the author’s work, their story will be added to the Projects portion of the website where it will be showcased for at least one month. Readers from all over the country will then be able to go to the manuscript’s page and donate small amounts of money to support the work. With their donation, the readers will be able to access more of the manuscript along with other forms of  appreciation tied to the eventual publication of the work. After approximately one month, if the manuscript reaches its goal amount, Quill Shift Literary Agency will move forward and present it to a carefully constructed list of editors.
How are the crowdfunding proceeds utilized?
The crowdfunding proceeds are split between the Agency and the author whose work raised the funds. Quill Shift Literary Agency will utilize its portion of the funds to continue to run the website and provide publicity and excitement for its authors. The writer’s portion of the funds go towards helping the writer offset any costs associated with producing the best work they possibly can.
What levels of participation are available for shifters?
 Once a project is uploaded to the Quill Shift Literary Agency site, Shifters who have provided their e-mail address through the contact form (found under the Readers tab) will be the first notified of the never before seen manuscript now available for viewing on the site from authors the Agency is excited about and believes have promise.  Approximately 10% of each manuscript is shared with Shifters to wet their appetite. After that, Shifters can donate whatever amount of money they like to support the project and have the opportunity to read a little bit more of it, too!