Foreign Rights Agents
Meredith Miller, Foreign Rights Agent; Sylvie Rosokoff, Associate Director of Foreign Rights; Alex Slater, Foreign Rights Agent; Claire Roberts, Director of Foreign Rights
THE WORLD IS OUR MARKET
Whenever clients first hear Trident's foreign rights book agents make that statement, there is a look of disbelief or at least a thought that this must be some exaggeration. However, the fact is that the world is the market for Trident's Foreign Rights Department. Last year, the department concluded over 500 sales for Trident's clients in over thirty-five foreign markets. Trident has the largest dedicated foreign rights department in the literary agency business and a record unmatched by any other literary agency.
Robert Gottlieb, chairman of Trident, takes a direct interest in the Foreign Rights Department's operations. "I believe that the personal contact with foreign publishers on behalf of our authors can sell foreign rights to our authors' books more effectively than publishers," says Robert. "We care a lot more, and we want to sell the books everywhere—big markets, small markets, Europe, Asia, Latin America, and Africa."
Claire Roberts, the managing director of Trident's Foreign Rights Department, says that success is the result of several factors. "Through Trident's domestic literary agents, we get to know our authors' books long before they are published. Next, we have developed longstanding one-to-one relationships with editors and executives at publishing firms around the globe, and we know who to contact to generate the most interest in a specific book. Accordingly, during the course of a year, we meet with several hundred editors to promote our clients' works.
Sylvie Rosokoff, the associate director of the department, says that the department's mission is "to manage our clients' careers around the world with the focus always on securing the best possible publications. We test the markets and strategies to find the right fit for each book."
Trident's foreign rights literary agents each year attend the London, Frankfurt, and Bologna book fairs. Robert Gottlieb leads the team to London and Frankfurt. Alex Slater, a foreign rights literary agent in the department, says, "Before we leave for a fair, our days are already booked with non-stop meetings from early in the morning through the evening. Everyone wants to meet with us, and no market is too small." To prove that point, Alex has closed deals in Qatar and in the South African language of Afrikaans.
"One of the unique tools that Trident uses to generate interest in its clients' books in advance of a fair is the Hot List," says Meredith Miller, a foreign rights literary agent who is responsible for its preparation. "The Hot List creates great buzz before we arrive at the fair and kicks off a competition among publishers."
And Trident's New York office is the place for editors around the world to stop when they are in New York City. U.S. agencies and publishers such as The Fiction Studio and The Story Plant that want their foreign rights sold also come to us. "They get to meet the entire team," says Claire. And the team's credentials are very impressive. Claire is a vice president of the firm with over eighteen years experience in international markets. Sylvie will soon be with the department for five years. She's also fluent in French and highly proficient in German. Alex has over five years of publishing experience and joined the foreign rights department about a year ago. Meredith joined Trident's Foreign Rights Department after working in the editorial departments of publishers.
They all view their goal to be the same: "We are dedicated to the long-term, global success of our clients—presenting their books to the top international editors, making the perfect match of publisher and author, negotiating the best terms for every contract, and being an active partner in the publishing process."