Ina Park (ipark98 on QT) has signed with agent Jessica Papin of Dystel Goderich & Bourret LLC.
Dear Ms. Papin,
In the 10 seconds it takes to unzip and lower your pants, 100 people around the world will be newly infected with a sexually transmitted disease (STD). By this time tomorrow, the World Health Organization estimates nearly one million others will follow suit. My narrative non-fiction work CLAP: The Science of Sex and its Unintended Consequences analyzes the latest STD research spanning syphilis to Zika to answer questions you never thought to ask during middle school sex ed: When is sleeping with 10 partners less risky than sleeping with one? How do you clear unwelcome visitors out of your vagina? When can overzealous depilation spread STDs like wildfire? CLAP explores these and other fascinating concepts, dispels common myths, and offers practical advice for curious readers who enjoy science with a touch of humor and sass.
Drawing on a decade of my experience as a physician, CLAP informs by blending tales of my patients’ sexual escapades and interviews with scientists who study genital creatures, great and small. When Michael discovers he has syphilis, he joins sex detectives from the health department on a quest to hunt down the source and find his partners before a full-blown outbreak ensues. When Brenda’s vagina acts up, she meets my favorite expert who demystifies the vaginal microbiome through Star Wars' analogies and associations with the common kitchen oven. Beyond patient stories, the science of sex becomes personal as colleagues share life events that led them into the field of STD/HIV. Marian, an immunologist, stumbles down the rabbit hole of a polyamorous sex cult. Herpes researcher Nick is excommunicated by a Mormon tribunal for being gay. Ronan, an infectious disease physician, is completely blindsided when he learns of his own HIV diagnosis. Like Mary Roach’s BONK or Po Bronson’s NurtureShock, CLAP weaves scientific data through intimate narratives that are at turns entertaining, tender, surprising, raunchy--and sometimes all of the above.
As an associate professor at the University of California San Francisco-School of Medicine, I’ve been recognized for my expertise by awards from the American STD Association, American Academy of Family Physicians and American Medical Women’s Association. I consult regularly for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and was appointed to the editorial board of the journal Sexually Transmitted Diseases. I’m known as an engaging speaker on the topic of STDs/HIV, and have spoken to live audiences as large as 1000 in 17 states and Canada. In 2015 and the first half of 2016 I booked 27 speaking engagements, reaching at least 10,000 health professionals. Links to a selection of my speeches, podcasts, blog posts, and scientific publications can be found at: http://profiles.ucsf.edu/ina.park. Three national organizations where I have served as a speaker have enthusiastically agreed to promote CLAP to their email subscribers, which will reach more than 30,000 additional readers.
I am seeking your representation based on your interest in narrative science and your extensive experience working with academics as both an editor and an agent. I also loved your interview at Emory when questioned about your "dangerous missions" as a literary agent; in my field our children tell their classmates that "my mom works in the sex industry". I think you would be an invaluable partner to help navigate the world of publishing for my debut work for the lay public. I've included my first chapter as an attachment to this email. May I send you my full proposal for CLAP: The Science of Sex and its Unintended Consequences? Thank you for your consideration.