firstwriter.com's database of literary agents includes details of 2,412 English language literary agents and agencies that don't charge reading fees. The database is continually updated: there have been 64 listings added or updated in the last month. With over a dozen different ways to narrow your search you can find the right literary agent for your book, fast.
The entertainment industry is going through a reckoning. The WGA has writers banding together to advocate for themselves and their work, which has given us a peek behind the curtain of the frankly appalling treatment writers have had to put up with from studios.
But that’s not the only struggle writers have been dealing with.
In the past week, dozens of authors have reported that a major literary agency, New Leaf Literary Agency, has dropped them from representation. Some of these authors were in the middle of contract negotiations with publishers and will now be left without agents representing them. Some authors were notified of this loss in representation via a 10PM email on Friday evening.
Louise Ripley-Duggan, founder of the the Ripley-Duggan Agency, has joined The Theseus Agency as a literary agent.
Ripley-Duggan started her career in literary management at the Blake Friedman Literary Agency after graduating from university. She set up her agency in 2019 and built up a list of clients, most notably Isabelle Schuler, for whom she secured a two-book deal with Raven in 2021 for Lady MacBethad.
Elizabeth Roy, founder of the Elizabeth Roy Literary Agency, is retiring after nearly 50 years working in publishing. The business will pass to Emily Talbot at United Agents at the end of April.
Roy started her publishing career as Mark Collins’ secretary at Fontana, William Collins’ paperback list and work at Eyre Methuen, Hamish Hamilton Children’s Books and Knight Books, Hodder & Stoughton’s children’s paperback imprint, followed.
Twelve years later she started her agency at a time when there were few children’s specialist agents. She launched the careers of the late Marcus Sedgwick and Jackie Morris among others and has proudly overseen the development of many other writing and illustrating careers, including that of Steve Antony, Nicola Killen and Nicola Morgan.
Niamh O’Grady and Marina de Pass have both been promoted to agents at The Soho Agency.
De Pass represents commercial, book-club and literary fiction and has just concluded a 12-way auction for her first non-fiction project One Pot, One Portion by Eleanor Wilkinson (Ebury).
Other highlights include Carole Hailey’s BBC Radio 2 Book Club Pick The Silence Project (Corvus) and Joanna Miller’s debut The Bee Orchids, pre-empted by Fig Tree just ahead of the book fair and already sold in a number of international territories.
Rae Phillips recently acquired an agent using firstwriter.com's database of literary agencies. We asked her about her writing, and how she found success.
In last month's article, Avoiding literary agency scams (fwn 44), we identified the warning signs to watch out for in order to avoid bad agents. In this article I'll be reversing the question and providing tips on how to find good agents.
For as long as there have been writers eager to get published, there have been con artists ready to prey upon them for a quick buck. Nowadays, the internet is rife with phony literary agencies offering writers false hope in return for a small (or not-so-small) sum of money. In this article I'll look at some of the ways you can spot a dodgy agency, and avoid your time, money, and aspirations being abused. While none of the points below guarantee by themselves that an agency is dubious, together they can make a compelling case, and they should all make you tread a little more cautiously.
Rob Riley recently acquired an agent using firstwriter.com's database of literary agencies. We asked him about his writing, and how he found success.
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