Transatlantic Agency Announces New Vice-President

Haywood (1)TORONTO —  David Bennett, President of the Transatlantic Agency, has announced a new management structure for the company. The day-to-day management of the agency will now be handled by a management committee, to be chaired by Samantha Haywood. Haywood, a long-time partner and shareholder in Transatlantic, will become Vice-President of the company. The management committee will be comprised of a core group of Transatlantic agents and administrative staff, with others rotating in as their expertise is required. David Bennett founded the Transatlantic Agency in 1994 and wishes to reduce his administrative workload. Said Bennett, “this new structure draws on the talent and experience of our longest serving senior agents and promotes their greater involvement in guiding the future of the company. Samantha Haywood has always led by example, and will contribute the energy and vision necessary for the company’s continued success.”

Said Haywood, “I have committed the last decade of my career to growing my client list at Transatlantic and look forward to leading the company through this new, exciting phase of growth.”

Haywood launched her client list with Transatlantic in 2004. Prior to joining the Agency she worked in the foreign rights departments of Random House of Canada Ltd. and at WCA Ltd. She lives in Toronto with her husband Pieter Swinkels, EVP Publisher Relations & Content of Rakuten Kobo, and their two children.

About Transatlantic Agency:

For more than twenty years the Transatlantic Agency has been the umbrella for a vibrant collective of independent publishing professionals with diverse backgrounds and specialties. Its 250+ clients make regular appearances on notable bestseller lists across North America and around the world and regularly win major awards both domestically and internationally.

McClelland & Stewart and Doubleday U.S. Make Joint Pre-empt for First Novel The Boat People by Sharon Bala

BalaSbwToronto, March 23, 2016—Melissa Danaczko of Doubleday (New York) and Anita Chong of McClelland & Stewart (Toronto), have jointly acquired U.S. and Canadian rights to THE BOAT PEOPLE, a debut novel by Sharon Bala. The book was purchased on a pre-empt, for publication in January 2018. The deal was arranged by Stephanie Sinclair.

Says Danaczko: “THE BOAT PEOPLE is an extraordinary novel about a group of Sri Lankan refugees trying to navigate a byzantine immigration system. Bala is a vivid, compassionate writer, immediately pulling you into the mindset of not only the asylum-seekers from a war-torn country but also those whose job it is to decide their fate. A stunning debut that is at once intimate, urgent and universal in the questions it raises.”

Upon the acquisition, Anita Chong added: “Fiction has the power to create bridges of empathy and understanding, and this is what Sharon Bala has done so powerfully in THE BOAT PEOPLE, by illuminating the universal and deeply human aspects of the immigrant and refugee experience in a way that feels both fresh and urgent. From the bones of a little-known, real-life incident, Bala has crafted a beautiful and high-stakes story that asks difficult but necessary questions—questions that will only become increasingly relevant as the world-wide refugee crisis continues. I devoured this novel, and I know readers will do the same.”

The manuscript for Bala’s novel won the Percy Janes First Novel Award (May 2015) and was short listed for the Fresh Fish Award (October 2015), and has already begun to catch the eye of other writers: “THE BOAT PEOPLE is full of drama and character, sharp bold sentences and movement of all sorts, global and interior,” says bestselling author Lisa Moore (Caught and February). This is “gorgeous writing, compassionate and urgent.”

THE BOAT PEOPLE focuses on thirty-five-year-old Mahindan, who has survived the harrowing experiences of civil war, a prison camp, and a perilous ocean voyage from Sri Lanka. When the rusty cargo ship carrying him and 500 fellow refugees reaches safe Canadian shores, he thinks the struggle is finally over. But in reality, his journey has only begun. Set in Vancouver and Sri Lanka, THE BOAT PEOPLE follows Mahindan and his six-year-old son as they are separated, imprisoned, and forced to navigate the morass of the refugee system. Inspired by real life events, THE BOAT PEOPLE is a timely novel about identity and belonging, family secrets and loss, and the rift that can sometimes form between immigrant parents and their third culture children. It is an important contemporary novel that invites us to explore what people leaving everything they know to become strangers in a strange land are going through, and provokes a more compassionate lens through which to view the current refugee crisis.

For more information, please contact:

Stephanie Sinclair, 416.488.9214stephanie@transatlanticagency.com

Freehand Books hires Stephanie Sinclair for Foreign Rights

Stephanie SinclairFreehand Books has entered into agreement with Transatlantic Agency to be the exclusive representative of Freehand’s list for world rights excluding Canada.

Starting January 2016, Stephanie Sinclair will represent Freehand as a corporate client and will be responsible for the sale of international rights for the publisher. Freehand’s excellent roster of award-winning and original fiction and nonfiction dovetails seamlessly with Sinclair’s personal literary taste. She will represent them alongside her already existing list of award-winning personal writing clients.

Freehand Books was established in 2007 with a simple mandate: to publish excellent Canadian literature. They publish writing that exhibits outstanding craft, is stylistically creative and original, and has content that is both engaging and slightly quirky, a little outside the mainstream. The eclectic, purposeful mix illustrates the dual nature of the word freehand; drawing freehand may be expressive of both unfettered creativity and exquisite control. Freehand has published works by some of Canada’s most well-loved authors, including Saleema Nawaz, Ali Bryan, and Maurice Mierau.

For more information on titles available, please contact Stephanie Sinclair at stephanie@transatlanticagency.com

Stephanie Sinclair Seeking New Submissions

Stephanie Sinclair is actively seeking submissions from aboriginal writers. Stephanie is of Cree-Ojibway descent and would like to expand her list with a specific focus on representation for writers of aboriginal descent. She is looking for literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, memoir, or true crime.Please see Stephanie’s submission guidelines. She looks forward to reading.

U.S. agent Sandra Bishop joins Transatlantic

Sandra BishopThe Transatlantic Agency is pleased to announce that SANDRA BISHOP has joined the company as its newest literary agent. Bishop has been an agent for six years in the U.S., where she was a Vice President with MacGregor Literary. While there she was named 2010 “Agent of the Year” by ACFW, an international organization of inspirational authors, an area in which she specializes.

Sandra represents writers of both fiction and non-fiction across a variety of categories – from serious narrative to inspirational romance. Among her most noted books are HANDS FREE MAMA by Rachel Macy Stafford; GUNNY’S RULES by R. Lee. Ermey; 100 WAYS TO SAY I LOVE YOU TO YOUR KIDS by Jay K. Payleitner; THE MEASURE OF KATIE CALLAWAY by Serena B. Miller; BEYOND THE DOOR by Maureen Doyle McQuerry; and SWEETHAVEN SUMMER by Courtney Walsh.

“Sandra’s considerable experience as an agent and the range of authors she represents dovetails perfectly with Transatlantic’s already-existing offerings. We now have four agents on the west coast – two each in Canada and the U.S. — giving us substantial representation in the region. We’re thrilled to welcome her aboard,” said Transatlantic’s President, David Bennett.

“I’m very pleased that Transatlantic recognizes the value my current clients will bring to the agency,” said Bishop. “I couldn’t be happier about the invitation to join a group of such diversely talented and experienced agents. It’s humbling and exciting, and I’m eager to get to work!”

Sandra Bishop lives in Portland, Oregon, where she will work alongside fellow Transatlantic agent Fiona Kenshole, who joined the agency in 2013.

New Agents at Transatlantic

The Transatlantic Agency is pleased to announce the appointment of two new Associate Agents, effective immediately.

Stephanie SinclairStephanie Sinclair has been working with Transatlantic since 2012 as Samantha Haywood’s full-time assistant.  Under Samantha’s mentorship, Stephanie has begun building her own client list, primarily in the areas of literary fiction, upmarket women’s fiction, narrative non-fiction, investigative journalism and true crime. She will maintain the post of Samantha’s assistant and is also co-representing (with Samantha) three new clients: Justin Rutledge, Myles Estey, and Daniel Karasik.

Stephanie is a graduate of the Publishing Program at Ryerson University, the Creative Writing program at the Humber School for Writers and the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts. For many years, authors, journalists and theatre writers have benefited from Stephanie’s uniquely attuned and effective advice in her work as an award-nominated freelance editor.

Amy Tompkins has worked in publishing since 2002, and has been Transatlantic’s contracts consultant since 2007.  In addition to continuing her duties in that role, Amy will represent both adult and children’s authors, and is already the international rights agent for two corporate clients – Orca Book Publishers Ltd. and Islandport Press.

Amy was previously the contracts manager at Westwood Creative Artists, is a graduate of the Publishing Program at Ryerson University, and has an MA in English Language and Literature.  Her areas of interest include literary, historical, and women’s fiction (including smart romance), narrative non-fiction, and quirky or original how-to books. On the children’s side, she is looking for authors of early readers, middle-grade, young adult, and new adult projects.

Transatlantic Agency Forms Alliance with Page Two

The Transatlantic Agency is pleased to announce an alliance with the newly founded Page Two, whose principals, Jesse Finkelstein and Trena White, will represent adult non-fiction to the book trade as Transatlantic associate agents.

Jesse FinkelsteinFinkelstein and White met on the management team at D&M Publishers Inc., whose day-to-day operations Finkelstein ran as chief operating officer. She also led the company’s digital and international sales strategies, licensing content in multiple formats and in global markets, and developing one of Canada’s first enhanced ebook apps. Prior to working at D&M, Finkelstein was associate publisher at Raincoast Books, where she managed the publishing department and oversaw acquisitions.

Trena WhiteAs the publisher of Douglas & McIntyre and Greystone Books, White was responsible for running a publishing program of sixty new books a year. She set the vision and strategy for list development and author relations and oversaw acquisitions. Before joining D&M, White spent several years in Toronto as an editor at McClelland & Stewart. She has worked with acclaimed writers such as Allan Gotlieb, Andrew Potter, Michelle Shephard, and Joshua Knelman. Both Finkelstein and White are graduates of the Simon Fraser University Master of Publishing program.

“Transatlantic is a successful agency with a longstanding track record and an excellent reputation,” says Finkelstein. “Working within their network will add tremendous value to our service offering, to the benefit of our agency clients.”

“We are thrilled to be joining forces with Transatlantic,” says White. “We’ve always appreciated their agents’ integrity and professionalism, and we have been impressed with the collegiality we’ve experienced throughout our negotiations.”

“We couldn’t be happier than to have these two highly-respected entrepreneurs joining Transatlantic,” says David Bennett, the agency’s president. “This new arrangement will make us all stronger and more robust in our respective endeavours. We look forward to welcoming them to the team.”