Agent Fest Online 2023 Faculty Eloy Bleifuss Q&A: Be Prepared to Talk about YOU

Meet Eloy Bleifuss

After studying journalism, Eloy’s first job in publishing was at Simon & Schuster where he assisted the publishers of S&S, Touchstone, and Scribner. He switched to the agency side when he joined Janklow & Nesbit Associates in 2019. In addition to working with Kirby Kim and Paul Lucas, Eloy is cultivating a growing list of fiction and nonfiction clients. A graduate of Vassar College, he grew up in Chicago and now lives in Brooklyn.

Eloy will be teaching “What Agents Look for in a Query,” and participating in Wednesday’s “How to Pitch; Common Mistakes; What Not to Do When You Pitch” – through Role Play.” Look for him on our Query Letter Critique team!


Eloy is drawn to genre-blurring upmarket and literary fiction. He loves contemporary stories of regular people navigating relationships and work, atmospheric thrillers set in an under-explored time or place, and character-driven speculative fiction. When it comes to nonfiction, he enjoys reading a broad sweep of categories from science writing and forgotten histories to pop culture and relatable self-help. Whether it is fiction or nonfiction, he is a fan of writing that is dark, strange, funny, and queer.

Q&A with Eloy

MWW: What advice can you give to querying authors to help them match their manuscript to the right agent wishlist?


EB: Be attuned to the specific book titles agents mention in their wishlist. Would your manuscript sit comfortably alongside them on a shelf at the bookstore?


MWW: Are there elements of a query that you pay particular close attention to?


EB: I’m always keen to learn more about the writer themselves. That’s why I enjoy reading the short biography that typically comes at the end of the pitch. Yes, I want to know your writing history and if you have published stories anywhere. But I’m always curious to know about your day job, where you live, and your hobbies.

MWW: During a pitch session, what’s the most effective use of the allotted time? What don’t you want to hear?


EB: Come prepared with specific questions to ask about how to strengthen your pitch. It’s your time. Make sure you receive the feedback you’re looking for.

MWW: What’s the best book you’ve read this year?



EB: When We Cease to Understand the World by Benjamín Labatut





Check out all of the Faculty and view the Full Schedule

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2023 winner of The Minnesota Book Award and the Anthony Award!

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