Agent Interview: Emma Sector

EmmaSector - headshot
Emma started her career with Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, where she worked in the marketing department before joining the Aladdin editorial team. After leaving S&S, she continued to do editorial work on a freelance basis and become acquainted, as a publicist, with the bookstore landscape. Having approached publishing from so many different angles, Emma has developed a comprehensive view of the children’s literature market, as well as an appreciation of all the hard work it takes to get a book from author to reader. She is looking to create long lasting relationships with authors, working with them to polish their work and find the right editorial match.
Kirsti Call: When I first met Emma Sector (through email), I liked her immediately. Her passion for children’s literature is contagious and since I signed with her just one month ago, her knowledge has helped me improve my manuscripts.  Welcome to Writers’ Rumpus, Emma!  
truthWhat inspired you to become an agent?
Emma Sector: So many things! Though the opportunity to partner with authors and illustrators for the long term is what excites me most. And I must give credit to the wonderful Kim Zarins; she and I worked together on her Young Adult (YA) novel, Sometimes We Tell The Truth when I was at Simon & Schuster. Kim suggested I talk to Rachel Orr (who also works at Prospect) about being an agent. Rachel is brilliant in every way and was so helpful as I made the decision.
KC: What kinds of manuscripts are you looking for?
ES: I’m looking for middle-grade and YA of all types, but I’m especially drawn to fantasy adventure, magical realism, and historical fiction. I love picture books with big ideas and few words and chapter books with quirky, vibrant characters.
KC: Who is your ideal client?
ES: Someone who is passionate about their work and open to collaboration. As you know Kirsti, I love getting on the phone to brainstorm!
KC: Yay! Brainstorming is the best!  What makes you keep reading a submission?
ES: The voice is the most important for me. If I connect with the voice, I can follow a story anywhere!
KC: What was your favorite book as a kid, and what’s your favorite book now?  Why?
ES: I was a huge Harry Potter fan as a kid. I also loved Little Women and Anne of Green Gables. Hard to say what my favorite book is now, but I think I’ll go with My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante. All these books feature strong friendships and explore how powerful they can be, which I love.
KC: What’s something funny or unique about you?
ES: I had seven wisdom teeth! They’ve all been removed but for a time I
was very wise. 🙂
KC: What’s your advice for aspiring authors?
ES: Make author friends! Being connected with other writers is such a special part of the writing journey. It’s so important
to have people to give you feedback, support and advice. And the kid’s book world is such a beautiful community!
KC: Thank you for visiting Writers’ Rumpus! If you are interested in querying Emma or want to learn more about her and her agency, you can find her submission guidelines here.


  1. Very helpful, informative interview , thank you! ( I love Harry Potter too.) I can’t help wondering how many words constitutes “few“ for picture books!

    Liked by 1 person

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