Courtney Stevenson

Quill Tree Books / HarperCollins Children's Books

My Manuscript Wish List®

For my list, I’m looking for mostly MG and YA fiction. I tend to skew more toward the literary, but I also need a narrative pace that keeps me turning pages, and clever humor is always a plus. I’m not as invested in flowery descriptions as I am in engaging plot and characters that I believe in.

Most often I gravitate toward contemporary fiction for both MG and YA. I’d love to find more stories that tackle tricky family relationships, generational histories, or adoption stories, and more representation of religious faith and/or grappling as a lens on coming of age. (I’m not a believer of any kind, but as young people figure out how they fit into the world, religion might be a big part of that!)

When it comes to genre, I can fall in love with a fantasy or sci-fi if it feels rooted in the real world. I’m too much of a wimp for straight horror, but I do love stories that have darkness and mold around the edges, or that have me looking over my shoulder while I’m reading.

I’m dying to find some really strong historical fiction, with a story readers may not have heard before that is begging to be told. I’m particularly interested in American history, and stories that are more “slice of life” or pure adventure in a historical setting. (And if it’s magical or haunted, I’m definitely open to that too!)

Wishlist of vibes: old timey cities, family secrets, mistakes that were meant to happen, optimism in spite of it all, fierce mothers, not-quite-humanness, houses of ill repute, body weirdness, punk rock, craftsmanship, Over the Garden Wall feels, grotesqueries, cowboys (any gender), seafaring (feminine), convents (hijinks), and characters who remind me of Roy Kent.

For something completely different, I’d be excited to see a Mary Roach-type book for young readers–something that incorporates some similar gross humor/fascination, and isn’t afraid to ask the really weird questions.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions should be emailed to

Agented submissions only.

Vital Info