Claire Friedman, Inkwell Management Literary Agency

YA Contemporary

On Submission

Louisa Onomé is a contemporary YA writer based in the Toronto area. She holds a BA in professional writing, does content writing at her day job, and is training to be a mental health professional. She is also an all-around cheerleader for diverse works and writers. When she is not writing, her hobbies include picking up languages she may never use, trying to bake bread, and perfecting her skincare routine.

I started writing seriously in 2012 (RIP my fanfic writer life) and wrote/edited/queried 4 novels (adult and YA) before signing with my agent on the 5th. I credit being an AMM Round 3 mentee for really helping me polish my manuscript and teaching me how to revise properly.

My background is in professional writing and I’m a previous AMM mentee (R3!). Specifically, as a former mentee, I know the level of dedication needed on both sides for a mentorship to be successful. I’ve found that a combination of perseverance, skill, and discipline has helped me as a mentee and now as an agented author. I’m happy to share what I know to help another writer on their journey.

Mentorship is such a huge reason of why I’ve found success and I’m such an advocate for it that I feel it’s important to pay it forward, especially for other marginalized writers like myself. It’s so much simpler when you have someone guiding you through a process.

I’m looking for YA with a strong hook and the characters to pull it off. When I say strong hook, though, that doesn’t mean every scene has to be outwardly action-packed. Quiet hooks are also welcome (and more of what I’m familiar with).

I love stories that make the ordinary special; stories that are lyrical and real, too.

Bonus points for offbeat hooks or characters. Personality and characterization is huge for me, so if this is something you’re interested in working on yourself, I’m happy to work with you!

And as always, this goes without saying, but a resounding yes to diversity of any kind!

  • Contemporary
  • Sci-Fi
  • #ownvoices
  • Romance
  • Urban/Contemporary Fantasy

In all genres:

I Love: enemies to friends (!!!), awkward characters, characters who don’t always make the right choices, familial bonds, lush settings (especially in contemporary).

I Dislike: one-dimensional love interests and secondary characters, vulgarity for the sake of it, tokenism.


  • Edit Letter (Big Picture developmental feedback)
  • Line edit (dropping notes into a Word Document)
  • Freestyle in chat

I love big picture edits so that’s always my main priority. I like to read over the entire story and take notes on where things felt lacking or where elements can be added/beefed up. Line edits can come later, but I’ve always felt those have more to do with your style as a writer vs overarching plot or character issues. In terms of communication methods, we can figure out what works best and is most convenient. I’m always available for questions and would love to help out with a query list when the time comes!

I want to work with someone who understands how necessary revision is and is serious about moving forward in their career. Someone who is open to new and potentially exciting possibilities for their work would be ideal as well.


  • Sweet contemporaries that will ruin my life forever (see. THE SUN IS ALSO A STAR).
  • Awkward girls who don’t fit in or stand out
  • Boys who aren’t super soft or super tough and err more on the side of realism.
  • I’m also a huge huge huge fan of (read. would die for) the Final Fantasy series (7, 8, 9, 10, 12, 13, 15), so any sci-fi with that kind of feel is a huge plus.
  • Anything to do with battle rapping (please, it’s my latest obsession!) like the movie “”Bodied””.
  • Anything to do with hip-hop culture that may not also have anything to do with rapping traditionally.
  • Anything set in a futuristic West African country (no royalty or slavery please).
  • “A book where highkey nothing happens” (see. EMERGENCY CONTACT) (I love quiet books too!)
  • Ensemble books with distinctive characters.
  • Anything that either reads like a Nigerian movie (my first love) or a Korean drama (my second love) in terms of plotting, characterization, and to be honest, dramatics.”


  • Anything non-consensual
  • Anything racist, homophobic, and/or transphobic
  • Anything where the big surprise is someone is terminally ill
  • High-fantasy. I’m not the right fit for it at all.
  • Any kind of abuse towards women

Books: The Sun is Also a Star, Americanah, The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl, Catcher in the Rye, After Dark, Starfish, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe, and of course the Harry Potter series (Slytherin!).

TV: Brooklyn 99, Schitt’s Creek, Kim’s Convenience, Insecure, Cowboy Bebop, Attack on Titan, My Name is Kim Sam-Soon, Signal, Avatar: The Last Airbender, The OC.

Movies: The Sound of Music, anything animated Disney, Juice, and also various true crime documentaries.