Essie White started her literary career by focusing on those for whom the literature was written: Children. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Education with her primary focus in Special Education. When working with special needs children, struggling with language, she discovered the beauty of words, and the rhythm of a well composed story, engaged them. She later went on to teach traditional elementary students and found that reading was best achieved, when a good book was the focus, not the specific skillset.
While expecting her third child (she has four), Essie completed her Masters of Arts in Education, specializing in Curriculum and Instruction for Early Childhood Education. That’s when her real journey with books began. Using quality children’s literature as the foundation, she began creating curricula for local and national homeschool groups as well as independent preschool organizations. For each subject, each topic, each thematic unit, she used a book as the starting point. When teaching, she read a book to begin each lesson. And when writing curriculum, she utilized a book as the launching pad for each learning objective.
A few years later, and with her youngest daughter as the inaugural student, Essie used this combination of skills and passions, to start her own early childhood development program. Still in operation today, after seventeen years, the school serves over 110 students daily in the Seattle, Washington area of the United States. Although Essie is no longer managing the school on site, each lesson, each day, still begins with a quality children’s book.
Fueling not just their creativity but also their emotional and intellectual growth, Essie understood the power art played in the development of small children. She became accustomed to including art activities as complimentary lessons to the literary ones. Her passion for exceptional art grew as a result. She witnessed the impact of stories told through beautiful pictures, both the stories the children created, as well as those she shared with them in books.
When she relocated to Minneapolis, Minnesota, and entrenched herself into the local children’s book community, Essie started receiving inquiries from local authors, asking about the path to publication. A lot of research later, as well as a lot of work, Essie decided to open her small agency with the hope of ensuring capable artists and authors, could eventually get their work seen by editors and publishers. Storm Literary Agency was subsequently launched in 2014.
Essie White is most proud, not necessarily of the agency’s work, but of the individuals that compile that agency. She is thankful and appreciative of the efforts of those members who work hard to support one another, and to represent the best in children’s publishing, always mindful of those whom reap the benefits: Children.
Victoria Selvaggio comes to Storm Literary Agency as a Literary Agent and Partner. Previously with The Jennifer De Chiara Literary Agency, she was drawn to the publishing scene first as an author. As a prior Regional Advisor for SCBWI: Northern Ohio, Victoria’s desire to help writers and illustrators reach their publications goals inspired her to become an agent.
With over twenty-five years as a business owner, Victoria is excited to help grow the agency’s client base with talented writers and illustrators, while also helping build the agency from within with motivated agents who possess the same ideals, literary interests, goals, and approaches to the industry.
As a frequent presenter at conferences, library events, contests, etc., Victoria is always interested in meeting writers and illustrators, and hearing about unique projects!
Previously received submissions . . .
While lots of updates are happening behind the scenes, I’ve closed submissions (except for conferences, events, contests, and/or anything I’ve agreed to remain open for), so that I can respond to everything that I currently have and/or requested. As it has always been important for me to respond to writers, I’d like a chance to do so, before opening submissions again. Anything I've received before March 22, 2018 is now being considered for Storm Literary Agency.
Stacy Little grew up, and currently lives, in Seattle, Washington, with her husband and her teen-aged daughter. Though she took a few years off for mothering, she has spent the better part of the last twenty-five years working with young children. With a Master’s in Teaching and years of experience, Stacy understands the importance of nurturing a love of books by exposing children to quality literature.
"While I love all aspects of teaching, the most enjoyable moments have happened during conversations with my young students. I am passionate about engaging children in rich language experiences. It is a wonderful thing to witness those instances when ideas are sparked, connections are made, similarities are noticed, questions are asked, or answers are discovered. Whether reading a book, writing a story, or creating a poem together, it is the art of language that I find so inspiring. It is for this reason that I love a good book! Picture books, chapter books, poetry books…A truly good book is thought-provoking. A truly good book can start a conversation."
Stacy's knowledge of early childhood education and literature, as well as her vast experience utilizing books inside and outside of the classroom, enables her to readily assist with our picture books and early readers.
Lauren Lindsey White has had a lifelong passion for reading. As a young child, she was entranced by the storytelling of Arthur Conan Doyle, Emily Bronte, Robert Louis Stevenson and Tolkien. Over time, her literary interests grew as she was introduced to the works of Toni Morrison, Sam Shepard, Samuel Beckett, Joy Harjo and Nayyirah Waheed.
Lauren graduated with a degree in Classical Literature and Theatre from Fordham University and then headed to Dublin, Ireland to study at Gaiety. Lauren has worked as a teacher, tutor, library educator and literary research assistant so, focusing on literature, especially children's literature, felt like a natural transition.
Lauren is also a writer and performer whose plays and poems have been performed and produced at many NYC theatres including: The LAByrinth Theater, Theatre Row, Ensemble Studio Theater, Maggie Flannigan’s Studio, Nuyorican Poets Café, Sidewalk Café, Grounded.. Her one-woman show, "Lauren White Wants You" was recently produced as part of the United Solo Festival after it premiered in a sold out run at the Dublin Fringe Festival in Ireland.
Lauren remains passionate about literature and relishes the opportunity to ensure manuscripts are the best they can be. She looks for the genius in the work, and strives to ensure those with whom she works, create the best story possible. Her expertise is in middle grade and young adult literature.