2021 Best Banter Contest Final Judges

Janna Bonikowski
Literary Agent

Janna Bonikowski joined the Knight Agency in 2016 with several years of experience as both an independent editor and a freelance editor for Lyrical Press/Kensington. She holds a bachelor’s degree focused on business and economics, but her passion for books made a career in publishing inevitable. 

Janna’s clients have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Indie bestseller lists. She is actively building her list, focusing on finding authors with unique viewpoints and fresh, engaging stories to tell. 

When she’s not reading, Janna tries to keep her challenging dog from eating the cats, the furniture, the stairs, the walls…

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Julie Gwinn
Literary Agent

Julie Gwinn, currently a literary agent with The Seymour Agency, has more than a decade in publishing including serving as marketing manager then Fiction Publisher for B&H Publishing Group and Marketing Manager for Abingdon Press.

Prior to joining the publishing industry, Gwinn has more than 25 years’ experience in advertising, marketing and public relations. She uses her previous experience to aid her authors at every phase of their publishing plan.

She lives in Nashville, TN, with her husband and two children and also enjoys freelance editing, and DIY projects around the house.

Jennifer Herrington
Literary Agent

Jennifer started her career on the editorial side of publishing with Kensington Books Publishing’s Lyrical Press imprint and an internship with Entangled Publishing. She’s also worked as a freelance editor for independent authors. After an internship at a New York agency, she joined the Harvey Klinger Agency in 2020. Jennifer is currently building her list and is interested in representing picture books, chapter books, middle grade, YA, and adult fiction. She’s especially open to BIPOC and LGBTQ voices in the mentioned categories. Jennifer lives in Ontario, Canada, with her husband, three sons, and two dogs.

HARVEY KLINGER LITERARY AGENCY represents high-quality writers of adult fiction, nonfiction, young adult, and middle-grade books.



Julie Sturgeon
Development Editor, Tule Publishing

Julie Sturgeon is a development editor on the Tule Publishing teams, after being the managing editor at Crimson Romance, a division of Simon and Schuster, for nearly six years. She has more than 25 years of experience in journalism and magazine writing/editing throughout her career, which covers everything from lifestyle stories to sports reporting to editorial director of two business-to-business titles. One of her favorite gigs was building the romance department at Pages magazine as its exclusive columnist for the genre until the publication ceased. (That’s polite wording for “it went bankrupt.”)

Her biggest claims to fame are her annual snarky Christmas letter and a video of her in candy-striped bibs, screaming when Indiana University upset the Kentucky Wildcats.