Cheyenne Faircloth

Handspun Literary Agency

My Manuscript Wish List

Hi! My name is Cheyenne (she/her). I'm most interested in manuscripts from historically excluded communities, i.e. queer, BIPOC, AAPI, neurodivergent, and disabled voices.

My interests include YA, Southern Gothic, folkloric elements, gothic romances, fantasy stories with political elements and well-grounded world building, non-western mythology, sports romances in conversation with institutional issues/sexism/gender, and creatures from myth told through a queer allegorical lens.

I am not currently accepting middle grade, picture books, or nonfiction.

In YA

  • Queer (I'm really drawn to hopeful/joyful queer narratives.)
  • Voice! (Especially within a contemporary YA space, I want the pages to be really voice-y with a high concept plot! Make me laugh/cry/feel all the angst!)
  • Southern Gothic (think Summer Sons for a younger audience (also open to this in adult), or a darker version of The Raven Cycle).
  • Stories that challenge sexuality/gender norms (this goes for all genres and age groups).

Fantasy (both YA and Adult) 

  • Well-grounded magic systems and/or world building (Tomi Adeyemi, Xiran Jay Zhao, Fonda Lee).
  • Writing that feels folkloric/atmospheric (Naomi Novik, Katherine Arden, Emily Tesh.)
  • Dark/gothic fantasies with romantic elements (Amélie Wen Zhao, Ava Reid, S.T. Gibson.)
  • Romance fantasy! (A sweeping romance at the center of an epic fantasy? Sign me up!)
  • Stories that pull inspiration from non-western mythology. (Iron WidowChildren of Blood and Bone, She Who Became the Sun). 
  • Fresh takes on mermaids, vampires, werewolves (not just western interpretations/myths, and preferably through a queer lens; darker interpretations welcome, ones closer to the original myths).
  • Stories firmly rooted in place/culture (I love when a setting acts like a character.)
  • Feminist retellings of myth. 

Adult

  • Fresh takes on sports romances (queer, in conversation with gender, sexism, ones that address institutional issues; very partial to ice skating, not so much hockey).
  • Unlikable women (think Fleabag).
  • Exploration of taboo/toxic relationships/lovecraftian horror (think Hannibal on NBC but with Will and Hannibal's much deserved on-screen kiss, and A Dowry of Blood). 
  • Trope-filled stories, soapy writing: found family, secret royal (yes, she’s *that* kind of American), all the romance tropes (enemies/rivals to lovers, grump meets sunshine are some of my favorites). 
  • Characters with complicated relationships with religion (think the “Hot Priest” in Fleabag).
  • A story that encapsulates Kristan Chang’s quote from “Churching”: “Godhood is just like girlhood: a begging to be believed.”
  • Healthy examples of polyamorous relationships.

Horror (open to adult or YA)

  • really voicey, the intensity of the voice is adding to the horror element
  • sad horror ie. The Haunting of Hill House and Bly Manor
  • dark academia (something like Babel by R. F. Kuang, but perhaps a tad shorter).

Fun facts about me:
  • One of my favorite songs is "Malhari" from Bajirao Mastani. You can't listen to this song and not dance.
  • My first jobs as an editor were on Ao3, and I have a huge respect (and love) for fan-fiction writers.

Submission Guidelines

Please fill out this form on Query Manager:

https://querymanager.com/query/HandspunLit

For fiction: please have a query letter, short synopsis (ideally 5 pages or less), and the first three chapters or 50 pages of the novel, whichever is more.

Attachments are best; we prefer Word docs to PDFs.


Guidelines & Details

Vital Info

Agent
Fiction: Action/Adventure, Erotica, Fantasy, Historical, Horror, LGBTQ, New Adult, Romance, Young Adult

Favorite sub-genres: Epic Fantasy, Gothic Horror, Magical Realism, Speculative Fiction, Urban Fantasy
I'd like the next...
  • The All for the Game series (but more timely/less problematic; I love the found family of misfits, queer aspects, the sort of outrageous plot that you can't stop reading.)
  • Iron Widow (I love the politics, the poly relationship, the unapologetic characters, the centering of feminine rage, and the disassembling of a patriarchal society, extra points for being a YA fantasy.)
  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone series (I love fantasy stories that don't simplify conflict to just good versus evil; this series does an amazing job at bringing to light the very real horrors of war, while also having characters on both sides of a conflict that readers can sympathize with. Extra plus that it's YA fantasy!)
  • Children of Blood and Bone (an epic, African-inspired fantasy with interesting dynamics between characters, loved how immersive Tomi's writing is.)
  • Bring Me Their Hearts (a MC that can make me laugh and cry in the same breath as Zera does in this series; a humorous voice that tackles heavy topics; again, another plus for being YA fantasy).
  • Six of Crows (found family, gritty setting, voice-y writing, heist story, all my favorites)!

My favorites include...
  • Hannibal on NBC: I will truly never forgive that network for not picking it up for a fourth season. I love that it's obvious to the audience that you're not supposed to be rooting for the bad guy, but the writing is so good that you can't help but eventually root (at least a little) for him. And if there had eventually been an on screen kiss between Will and Hannibal? Chef's kiss! But, NBC wasn't ready for that *tears*.
  • Fleabag: I love when a story can make me laugh and cry in the same breath. There's a special type of vulnerability within that.
  • K-dramas: epic slow burns, ridiculously lovable characters, outrageous plots that somehow work.
  • Borgia: interesting time period, villains are the main characters, "exposing the church/people in power" tropes.
  • Peaky Blinders: only the earlier seasons when you could still root for Thomas Shelby, and the vibe centered around exploring this family, their bonds with one another, and how they're tested by the corruption around and within them.

My Upcoming Events:

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