Ali Lake

Janklow & Nesbit Associates

My Manuscript Wish List®

I am a young agent at Janklow & Nesbit Associates building my list in nonfiction, fiction, and YA. I love books that show me a new corner of the world or unexpected facet of human experience through an original, surprising voice. I am interested in stories from writers from traditionally underrepresented or marginalized backgrounds.


  • Memoir/narrative nonfiction that takes you on a tour of a strange world w/ author’s personal journey (Uncanny Valley, H is for Hawk, Wild, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil)
    • Would love something in the digital space—that takes you down an internet wormhole into a thriving subculture you didn’t know existed–a reddit group, nouveau digital art frenzy, social media trend, etc.
    • Or an outdoor adventure narrative from a writer who is not the traditional group who gets to tell these kind of stories.
  • Memoir/narrative nonfiction of a struggle for justice/against the casual injustice of the world (Know My Name, Three Women, Crying in H Mart)
  • Pop science and evidence-based self-help with a strong voice and defined vision. (How to Change Your Mind, Atomic Habits, The Power of Habit)
  • Cookbooks with a sassy voice and eye to teach beyond the recipes, ie. new skills, how to shop, how to intuit what ingredients work together, about culture or history…


  • Lit fiction that’s eerie/uncanny or upmarket in the thriller, horror genres—explores some type of repressed trauma that bubbles to the surface/is quietly present in day-to-day life (Trust Exercise, Never Let Me Go, The Plot, The Hunting Party).
  • Lit fiction/upmarket that’s witty, sharply observed, captures some truth about love/life (The Idiot, Pretend I’m Dead, I Capture the Castle, Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine)
  • Literary low fantasy (The Pisces, Such a Fun Age) and the occasional high fantasy adventure (Six of Crows, Throne of Glass)
  • New adult/campus novel—YA themes/pacing set at college or soon following. Self-discovery & social climbing. Fun but with horror or creepy fantasy elements. (Ninth House, Yolk)


  • Low fantasy, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, magical creatures invade the real world, horror elements (Legendborn, Cemetery Boys, Vampire Academy, The Nature of Witches)
  • High school rom-com exploring deeper issues. Fun, but changes your worldview.
  • Young detectives – Sammy Keys, Nancy Drew, Veronica Mars, Encyclopedia Brown, Hardy Boys for the current day (One of Us is Lying)

Previous to joining J&N, I worked at ICM Partners. I have a BA in English and French Literature from Columbia University.

Fun facts about me:

I used to dance ballet professionally. In the summer and fall, I love to hike and run. In the winter you’ll find me skiing or knitting while listening to an audiobook.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions should be emailed to

Submissions guidelines:

  • Include “Ali Lake” in the subject line.
  • For fiction submissions, send an informative description, a brief synopsis and the first ten pages. Please include the sample pages in the body of the email below your query.
  • For non-fiction submissions, send an informative description, a full outline, and the first ten pages of the manuscript. Please include the sample pages in the body of the email below your query.

Guidelines & Details