French Literary Agents Create a Professional Alliance

In News by Olivia Snaije

‘The time was ripe to create a professional organization that unites French and Francophone literary agents.’ And so, the Alliance ALF is formed in Paris.
Image - iStockphoto: DelPixart

Image – iStockphoto: DelPixart

By Olivia Snaije | @OliviaSnaije

‘For Better Visibility of the Profession’
Days before the opening of the Paris Book Fair, 11 French literary agents from eight agencies have announced the creation of the L’Alliance des agents littéraires français (ALF).

All the agents represent either authors or publishers, or work as sub-agents, and the group reports that they anticipate more agents will join. French publishers have long been considered by some to hold a certain dislike for literary agents, but in a statement the alliance said:

Laure Pécher is President of France's new Alliance des Agents Littéraires Français, "Alliance ALF"

Laure Pécher is President of France’s new Alliance des Agents Littéraires Français, “Alliance ALF”

“With the globalization of the trade, the proliferation of possible uses of a text (publishing and co-publishing, translations, adaptation for film and television, e-books, audio-books, and graphic novels) and authors who are increasingly nomadic, [writers] are more and more likely to seek out agents to represent them.”

“The alliance’s mission is:

  • “To bring together agents for better visibility of the profession;
  • “To ensure optimal representation of authors and publishers; and
  • “To maintain a running dialogue with authors’ unions, publishers, producers, as well as national and international institutions.

The alliance membership expects to play a educational role in the agenting profession as well, training authors and agents on technical issues and promoting an international presence for its members.

“Given the positive role that literary agents have in boosting the book markets — we owe the boom in Latin American and Indian literature to the well-established Anglo-Saxon model — given the vastness of the Francophone region and its potential (new writers, new publishers, new readers), the role of Europe and France on the international publishing scene, and the challenges we face in the coming years, the time was ripe to create a professional organization that unites French and Francophone literary agents.”

The founding members of the ALF Alliance are:

  • Pierre Astier, Astier-Pécher Literary Agency
  • David Camus, AJA Anna Jarota Agency
  • Anna Jarota, Anna AJA Jarota Agency
  • Mark Kessler, Susanna Lea Associates
  • Marie Lannurien, l’Autre Agence
  • Patrick Leimgruber, Patrick Leimgruber Literary Agency
  • Corinne Marotte, L’Autre Agence
  • Gregory Messina, Messina Linwood Literary Agency
  • Laure Pécher, Astier-Pécher Literary Agency
  • François Samuelson, Intertalent
  • Michael Wenzel, Editio Dialog Literary Agency
About the Author

Olivia Snaije

Olivia Snaije is a journalist and editor based in Paris who writes about translation, literature, graphic novels, the Middle East, and multiculturalism. She is the author of three books and has contributed to newspapers and magazines including The Guardian, The Global Post, and The New York Times.