Joanna MacKenzie

Nelson Literary Agency

My Manuscript Wish List®

Joanna MacKenzie is an Sr. Agent with Nelson Literary Agency where she represents authors writing for both the adult and children’s markets across all areas of fiction, poetry and select non-fiction projects. She is drawn to vivid, engaging writing and is particularly interested in high concept thrillers (with a soft spot for speculative and anything that challenges tropes) , voicey mysteries, dark academia, stories that straddle genres, and women’s fiction where the personal intersects with the world at large – if any of these are set in the Midwest, all the better. Across the board, she’s looking for works that highlight under-represented voices. Her authors are New York Times bestsellers, Edgar and Anthony Award nominees, and critically acclaimed storytellers.

Fun facts about me:

I wrote my MA thesis on Romantic Comedies.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions should be emailed to

Submissions are accepted via email only.

  • Make sure NLA represents the type of project you’ve written. (See below.)
  • Decide which agent you want to query. You may only query one agent at the agency. Our first-round readers and agents share and discuss query letters, so a response from one NLA agent is a response from all NLA agents.
  • Open a new email and address it to the appropriate agent. (See below.)
  • In the subject line, write QUERY and the title of your project. This will help ensure that your query isn’t accidentally deleted or caught in our spam filter.
  • In the body of your email, include a one-page query letter and the first ten pages of your manuscript.
  • No attachments please. Because of virus concerns, emails with attachments are deleted unread.

Guidelines & Details