New President and Agency expansion at Transatlantic Agency

 

Transatlantic Agency announces change of ownership and company expansion with two new agents

David Bennett, President of Transatlantic Agency, has sold his controlling interest in the agency to partner Samantha Haywood, who becomes President of the company. David Bennett remains at the company as Chairman Emeritus, Lynn Bennett will remain Treasurer.

Haywood joined Transatlantic in 2004, becoming a partner in 2013. She is a founding member and current President of the newly-formed Professional Association of Canadian Literary Agents. She represents award-winning and bestselling fiction, nonfiction and graphic novels including THE SILENT WIFE by A.S.A Harrison and THE BEST KIND OF PEOPLE by Zoe Whittall. Haywood specializes in international publishing, and handles foreign rights for Drawn & Quarterly.

Rob Firing photoRob Firing joins Transatlantic as a Speakers’ Agent & Literary Agent to create a Speakers’ Division. He has already signed Paulette Bourgeois, Karen Le Billon, and Zarqa Nawaz. Firing was Senior Director of Publicity, Communications and Speakers’ Bureau at HarperCollins in Canada and brings with him nearly  a decade of experience negotiating speaking engagements for some of the most influential speakers in Canada and around the world.

Marilyn Biderman photoMarilyn Biderman, previously of Marilyn Biderman Literary Management, joins Transatlantic as Senior Literary Agent, bringing her clients to Transatlantic including Katherena Vermette, the internationally bestselling author of The Break. Biderman established her own boutique agency in 2010 after twenty years of experience inbook publishing, most recently as Vice President, Marilyn Biderman Director, Rights and Contracts, at McClelland & Stewart Ltd.

David Bennett, who co-founded the Transatlantic Agency with Lynn Bennett, said of the changes, “Lynn and I are thrilled to be passing the torch to Samantha Haywood at a time when the agency is thriving and expanding. Samantha Haywood has always led by example, and will contribute dynamic energy and vision necessary to drive the company’s continued success.”

Said Haywood, “I am excited to invest in the agency and its talented agents. This company has helped me grow significantly as an agent over the past decade, and working hard for my clients will continue to be a top priority while I look forward to building the agency further together.”

Said Firing, “Transatlantic is one of the most dynamic and energetic agencies in Canada or anywhere. Incorporating a speakers’ division seems completely natural. I look forward to working with my current clients under this highly regarded banner, and to exploring new opportunities for Transatlantic’s impressive roster of authors.”

Said Biderman, “I am so excited about this new phase in my publishing career, and so happy to join the strong team at Transatlantic. Many of the agents are people I’ve worked with in the past, and long admired. I’m so grateful for their warm and enthusiastic welcome.”

Rob Firing has managed high-profile media relations and marketing campaigns for over 20 years. He was co-founder and partner in his own publicity and marketing firm before moving to HarperCollins Canada in 2002. He has negotiated paid engagements for celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, rock legend Gene Simmons, renowned explorer and scientist Tim Flannery, Little Mosque on the Prairie creator Zarqa Nawaz, General Rick Hillier, and many others.

At MBLM, Marilyn Biderman helped launch the careers of several prize-winning début authors. At McClelland & Stewart, she sold internationally the works of many acclaimed and bestselling authors, including Leonard Cohen, Alistair MacLeod, Anne Michaels, and Madeleine Thien. She is a lawyer, secretary of the newly-formed Professional Association of Canadian Literary Agents, a member of the Advisory Board of Ryerson University’s Publishing Program and Sheridan College’s Creative Writing and Publishing Program, and is a frequent guest-lecturer at publishing courses and writers’ seminars.

About Transatlantic Agency: 
Transatlantic Agency now has 13 literary agents located in the US and Canada representing over 350 clients. It is currently ranked number one for fiction and children’s books in Canada. From the west coast to the east, we are the only literary agency in North America with experienced agents in both the United States and Canada actively covering adult and children’s books in every market. Founded over 20 years ago, the Transatlantic family is a vibrant collective of tenacious, independent, publishing professionals with diverse backgrounds and specialties. Our clients make frequent appearances on notable best-seller lists across North America, and have won major awards such as the Newbery Medal (US), the Giller Prize (Canada), Michael L. Printz Honor Book (US), and the Governor General’s Award for both adult and children’s literature (Canada).

For more information contact: Samantha Haywood at samantha@transatlanticagency.com

First professional literary agent association formed in Canada

PACLA president and Transatlantic Agency literary agent Samantha Haywood

Thirty-eight Canadian literary agents from 13 agencies announced the formation of the Professional Association of Canadian Literary Agents on Jan. 23. The organization echoes similar long-standing international organizations, such as the Australian Literary Agents’ Association and the U.K.’s Association of Author’s Agents.

PACLA’s agents – led by president Samantha Haywood, of the Transatlantic Agency, and an executive committee comprising vice-president Jackie Kaiser (Westwood Creative Artists), treasurer Hilary McMahon (WCA), and secretary Marilyn Biderman – collectively represent more than 1,000 authors and illustrators.

Haywood says there has long been a need for such an organization in Canada, and its creation will result in better communication with other members of the publishing community both domestically and overseas.
“Many agents in Canada have been wanting to form an association for some time, and we need one that can concentrate on publishing issues that face Canadian authors in particular,” Haywood says. “Agents are the intermediaries between publishers and writers, and as a result we have a privileged perspective on the publishing ecosystem in Canada and abroad. … We hope to keep in regular communication with [other agent] organizations about our shared industry issues.”

PACLA’s main aim will be to advocate for authors, and also to provide professional development and standards of practice for agents. It will support endeavours like the Fair Contracts Initiative for equitable author contract terms, first launched by the U.S. Authors Guild in 2015.

“As the Writers’ Union and other organizations have pointed out, it’s never been more difficult to make a living as an author. While our association won’t be directly negotiating new terms with publishers, we will be actively advocating on behalf of what we feel is just and fair for authors in Canada,” Haywood says.

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.

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.”

Don Sedgwick Steps Down as Chair of Transatlantic Agency

After fifteen years with the Toronto-based Transatlantic Agency, Don Sedgwick is stepping down as chairman, director, and shareholder in the literary agency.

“I have enjoyed my time at Transatlantic, but most of my days are now taken up as executive director of the new MFA in Creative Nonfiction at the University of King’s College (Halifax). I need to ensure that these MFA students are given independent and unbiased advice about how to get their work published.”

“I understand his reasons,” says David Bennett, president of Transatlantic, “although this was not an easy decision for either of us. I wish him every success with the program at King’s, and I thank him for all his years of service and dedication to the agency.

TLA Rebrands

As its 20th anniversary approaches, the Transatlantic Literary Agency Inc. (TLA) is proud to unveil a new name and a new look. The agency will now be known as Transatlantic Agency.

We welcome you to our beautiful new website at www.transatlanticagency.com.

“The electronic universe is changing quickly,” notes Transatlantic’s president, David Bennett. “We have used our web presence very efficiently up until now as both a sales tool and a portal for illustrator portfolios, and our 20th anniversary seemed the right time to freshen our presence in the marketplace.”

Please note, as well, that e-mail addresses for all of our agents will also be changing, following a firstname@transatlanticagency.com format.

All other contact information will remain the same, including Transatlantic’s head office at 2 Bloor Street East in Toronto.

Contracts will continue to exist under the company’s official registered name, Transatlantic Literary Agency Inc., as they have for the last two decades.

The Transatlantic Agency has been selling rights to literary properties into worldwide markets since 1993. Established as a community of creative people with many years experience in book publishing, Transatlantic is a company of professional literary agents operating in Canada and the United States.

Transatlantic Adds New Partners

Transatlantic has completed a company reorganization in which agents Samantha J. Haywood (Canada) and Marie Campbell (Canada) have become shareholding Partners in the company.

 

Said David Bennett, President, “We are very pleased to have these two excellent agents becoming vested in the company as we move into 2013.”

Samantha Haywood and Marie Campbell were previously appointed to an expanded Board of Directors for the agency in 2011.

Samantha J. Haywood specializes in international publishing and has over 15 years’ Samantha Haywood experience selling primarily Canadian authors at home and abroad for volume publication and film/TV representation.

Samantha represents a diverse and vibrant client list of authors, ranging from award-winning and bestselling fiction (novels and stories) to narrative nonfiction writers (investigative journalists and memoirs) and she has a passion for graphic novels. Samantha handles foreign rights for the independent publisher, Drawn & Quarterly. Samantha launched her client list with the Transatlantic Agency in 2004 after working in the foreign rights departments of Random House of Canada Ltd and Westwood Creative Artists. Samantha works with her colleagues on the adult side of the agency, Shaun Bradley and Meghan Macdonald.

Marie Campbell specializes in representing writers of juvenile and YA fiction.
A former Marie Campbell editor and in-house rights manager, she has worked in London, UK, and in Toronto for more than 20 years. Her writers and clients have received awards recognition from every part of Canada, and internationally, including the Governor General’s Literary Award and the Canadian Library Association’s Book of the Year Award.

Also an instructor in Ryerson University’s Publishing Program, Marie joined the Transatlantic Agency in 2003 and works with her colleagues on the children’s side of the agency, David Bennett, Fiona Kenshole, Amy Tompkins, Patricia Ocampo and Jennifer Starkman.

Transatlantic Moves

Transatlantic Literary Agency is thrilled to announce the new location for our Head Office in Toronto.

Effective May 1, 2010, our address is:

Transatlantic Literary Agency Inc.
2 Bloor Street East, Suite 3500
Toronto, Ontario
M4W 1A8
Canada

Phone: 416.488.9214 (same)
Fax: 416.929.3174 (new)
Email: info@tla1.com