Elaine Spencer

The Knight Agency

My Manuscript Wish List®

My Manuscript Wish List® Items

I’m looking for fiction that wholly transports me- be it to another place, another decade, or to another life. I have an equal love for both the type of upmarket fiction that book clubs love discussing, and alternatively, the purely escapist commercial narratives that make a great beach read. I gravitate towards strong female voices, sweeping love stories, historical fiction, new adult stories (with big unique plots), romantic comedies (with a voice that is truly funny), quirky mysteries, family dramadies (who doesn’t love a last will and testament gone wrong) and high concept psychological thrillers. I have a soft spot for books with a southern flair and a desire for bringing previously underrepresented narratives to market. I always want stories that make me feel all the things: joy, anger, hope, frustration, shock, laughter, desperation, and longing. I believe a strong and memorable voice will almost always trump everything else. 

In Nonfiction I’m interested in narrative, prescriptive and gift nonfiction in a vast arena spanning from true-crime (especially as it relates to its lasting impact on history, a place or a group of people such as Missoula by Jon Krakauer or Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann), pop-culture, motivational/self-help, how-to guides, female empowerment, humor, business, finance, wellness, spiritual, diet, platform-driven social media brands, modern parenting, and lifestyle. 

Elements, Tropes and things that will always make me take notice in a pitch: 

  • Heist, Grifter, Spy, Con stories like First Lie Wins, The Social Climber, Counterfeit, Stone Cold Fox, Listen for the Lie
  • Strong Male voices like Steven Rowley, Matthew Norman, Will Leitch, Tom Perotta, Peter Heller
  • Family-focused narratives such as The Sweeney Sisters, Last Summer at the Golden Hotel, All Adults Here, The Unsinkable Greta James, Laurie Frankel.
  • Twentieth Century Historical Fiction focused on places, people, or story-angles that we haven’t heard of but that feel familiar some great examples I love Fiona Davis, Beatriz Williams, Susan Meissner, Marie Benedict
  • Women vs The World such as Women Are The Fiercest Creatures, The Wife App, Smile and Look Pretty
  • Romance for the modern reader, give me all the Emily Henry, Meet Me At the Lake, Thank You For Listening, Romantic Comedy, Funny You Should Ask, Nora Goes Off Script
  • Stories with unforgettable animals like Lily and the Octopus, Remarkably Bright Creatures, West With Giraffes
  • Art-centered plots (contemp or historical)- I devoured Woman On Fire, Fake, The Art Forger, The Night Portrait
  • Cozy Crime / Mystery The Maid, Thursday Murder Club, Finlay Donovan is Killing it, Everyone In My Family has Killed Someone, Dial A for Aunties
  • Books with Speculative Elements such as The Lost Apothecary, The Keeper of Lost Things or any magical realism
  • Stories with a strong setting great examples are Elin Hildebrandt, Karen White, or Where the Crawdads Sing
  • Isolated Locations ie boarding school, deserted island, airplanes, remote cabin
  • Characters Behaving Badly which crosses close to the con/grifter/heist bullet but not quite- The Club, A Novel Obsession, 
  • Books about Books,  The Midnight Library and The Reading List are opposites on this spectrum. The Wishing Game was pure magic.


Fun facts about me:

  • Original mid-westerner from Ohio, but now consider myself a true southerner after twenty+ years and mastering the fine art of preparing both collards and grits.
  • Never met a dog I didnt want to pet
  • Avid college football fan
  • Love cooking, recipe collecting, and all things epicurean
  • Fitness enthusiast
  • Pride myself on being an excellent gift-giver
  • Huge audio book listener
  • Love gardening, both for food and flowers

Submissions should be emailed to https://querymanager.com/query/Elaine_Spencer_TKA