Nathan Bransford's The Secret Year/YA Diary contest nabbed 650+ entries in just three days. Amazing. I saw a lot of great entries in comments, and I don't envy him the task of picking the winners. As the mother of two teens I did chuckle a few times over some of the entries, especially the ones with decidedly eighties overtones (uh, they don't talk like that anymore, guys.)
Agent Kate Epstein is actively looking for YA and nonfiction submissions (link found in this post by Tanya over at SFC.)
Did you know The Donald Maass Literary Agency has a page here that they update every other month with specific info on what they're looking for from potential new clients? Very helpful; I wish more agencies would do this.
Over on Pub Rants agent Kristin Nelson sounds like she's swamped but says the agency should be caught up on all the queries that came in during the holidays by next week. She also has a bit of advice for querying writers: "I’m thinking that if you sent us a query between Dec. 18 and Jan. 4 and you began your query with the words “I’m an avid reader of your blog,” it was definitely non-effective. After all, if you were an avid reader of the blog, you would have known that we were closed and not accepting queries until January." Oops.
Reason #999 to love agent Janet Reid: how quickly she breaks a New Year's resolution, and why.