Janet Reid, the literary agent known for her sharp-tongued writings about the publishing industry, especially on her website Query Shark, died on April 14, following a brief illness.

After moving to New York City from her native Seattle, Reid launched her own boutique literary agency, JetReid Literary, in 2000. Four years later, she joined Imprint Agency, and in 2006 she and Imprint owner Stephany Evans merged agencies to form FinePrint Literary Management, where she worked for the next 12 years, carving out a niche representing crime fiction as well as nonfiction.

After FinePrint, Reid spent three years at New Leaf Literary before relaunching JetReid in 2020. Over the course of her career, her clients included authors Bill Cameron, Adam Eisenberg, Andrew Grant, Dana Haynes, Jeffrey Marks, and Jeff Somers.

Beyond her more than 20-year tenure as an agent, Reid was perhaps best known for her avid blogging, which established her as a frank, outspoken voice within the publishing industry, as well as a trusted advisor for aspiring authors.

Reid's first blog, which she ran anonymously from 2004 to 2008 under the pen name "Miss Snark," offered up commentary on the trends, norms, etiquette, and hypocrisies that Reid observed within the industry. In 2008, Reid launched Query Shark, a website she ran under her own name for the next 16 years, where she offered free critiques of readers' query letters and answered their questions about the industry—for free.

In an obituary posted to the JetReid website, many colleagues, clients, and friends recalled the impact Reid and her work at Query Shark had on them and the industry.

"I want people to remember how kind she was, and how supportive of writers at all stages of their careers," said client Loretta Sue Ross. "Her blog was a major source of advice and encouragement and, of course, Query Shark was an amazing resource for authors at that stage."

"Janet has been a friend and mentor to so many of us in the publishing industry," said Gallery Books executive editor Abby Zidle. "I've never met someone with such a ready hand to help another, whether offering advice on a query, sharing a brilliant new manuscript, or connecting kindred spirits."

"Her passing leaves an unfillable hole for me, and for so many people,” said Keith Kahla, executive editor at St. Martin’s Press. "And yet, I know that somewhere, she’s clucking her tongue and saying, with great sympathy and heart—'I know it's hard... now get back to work.'"

Click here to contribute to a memorial bench in Central Park in Janet's name and to Janet's favorite charity, Wild Bird Fund.