Mary Cummings

Great River Literary

My Manuscript Wish List

After thirteen years as an agent for kids' books with Betsy Amster Literary Enterprises, in spring 2021 I opened my own agency: Great River Literary, dedicated exclusively to representing authors and author-illustrators of books for children and teens. Among my sales are board and picture books, chapter books and novels to such houses as Abrams; Little, Brown; Knopf; Random House; FSG; Imprint; Holt; Feiwel and Friends; Viking; Philomel; Nancy Paulsen; Chronicle; Candlewick; WorthyKids; HarperCollins; Balzer & Bray; Holiday House; Wiseman S & S and others.

Fun facts about me:

I'm wild about opera, mountains, dark chocolate, travel (Western U.S., Italy, England, Japan, etc.).

Submission Guidelines

Submissions should be emailed to

If you would like to submit your work for potential representation:

Please follow these guidelines (see also "Wishlist" in articles on Great River Literary website,

I represent fiction, literary nonfiction and poetry for children and teens, from board and picture books to middle grade (including chapter books) and young adult. (No adult projects, please).

For picture books, please embed the entire text in the body of your e-mail. If you are an author/illustrator, send a link to the dummy and sample illustrated pages (do not send attachments).

For longer works, please embed the first three pages.

Include a bit about your project, some bio info, plus related writing or other relevant experience. It's helpful to know your experience with kids, too.

Submit to: *** NO ATTACHMENTS *** They will be deleted without being read. No phone or snail-mail queries. Please understand that owing to the number of queries I receive, I am able to respond only to those that may be a potential fit.


Guidelines & Details

Vital Info

Fiction: Children's

Favorite sub-genres: Children's, Contemporary YA, Literary Middle Grade, children's diversity, children's graphic novels, fiction and non-fiction picture books
I'd like the next...

I'd like the next ... amazing, funny, gorgeous, moving, incredible book project for children. What does that look like? (Check out what I've acquired for some hints:, BOOKS).

My favorites include...

Oh, so many. Besides books I've sold, here are a few favorites. For picture books: THE MONSTERS' MONSTER (Patrick McDonnell), THE WOLF, THE DUCK & THE MOUSE (Mac Barnett/Jon Klassen), LOVE (Matt De La Pena/Loren Long), IN A JAR (Deborah Marcero), WHY AM I HERE? (Constance Orbeck-Nilseen/Akin Duzakin), A BIRD OR TWO: A Story about Henri Matisse (Bijou Le Tord), ALL THE WORLD (Liz Garton Scanlon/Marla Frazee), GOODNIGHT MOON (Margaret Wise Brown/Clement Hurd) and YOU ARE HOME (Evan Turk). A few novels: THE WILD ROBOT (Peter Brown), JOURNEY OF THE PALE BEAR (Susan Fletcher), GOING THROUGH THE GATE (Janet Anderson), WITCHES OF BROOKLYN (Sophie Escabasse) and SNOW AND ROSE (Emily Winfield Martin).

My Upcoming Events:

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