People & Publishing Roundup, May 2020

Aydrea Walden (by Stephanie Gerard)

Actor and writer AYDREA WALDEN will be Toastmaster for the 2020 Nebula Awards, to be pre­sented online May 30, 2020.

Brothers and video game devel­opers CHRIS & TIM STAMPER have joined the John Jarrold Literary Agency and will work on multime­dia projects.

ROBERT MARCHBANK is now represented by the John Jarr­old Literary Agency.

ANDY LIVINGSTONE is now represented by the John Jarrold Lit­erary Agency.


RICHARD POWERS‘s The Overstory (Norton) will receive the William Dean Howells Medal from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, “given every five years for the most distinguished American work of fiction published during that time.”

ARKADY MARTINE‘s A Memory Called Empire (Tor) won the 2020 Compton Crook/Stephen Tall Award for the “best debut novel in the science fiction, fantasy, and horror genres.” The award is presented by Balticon, which will be held online this year, with Martine attending virtually. She will receive an award plaque and a check for $1,000.

CHRISTOPHER BARZAK‘s The Gone Away Place (Knopf) and JUSTIN A. REYNOLDS‘s The Opposite of Always (Kath­erine Tegen) were included in the 2021-2022 Choose To Read Ohio list in the Books for Teens category, chosen by the State Library of Ohio, Ohioana Library Association, and the Ohio Center for the Book. The program “promotes reading across Ohio through a biennial booklist of 20 representative titles for all ages.”

Namwali Serpell (by Peg Skorpinski)

NAMWALI SERPELL‘s The Old Drift (Hogarth US & UK) won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for literature that confronts racism and explores diversity in the fiction category. Winners will be honored October 1, 2020 in the Connor Pal­ace Theatre in Cleveland OH.

TÉA OBREHT‘s Inland (Wei­denfeld & Nicolson) and BRYAN WASHINGTON‘s Lot (Atlantic) are among the six titles shortlisted for the £30,000 Dylan Thomas Prize, presented by Swansea University for the best published literary work in the English language by an author aged 39 or under. The winner will be honored at a virtual ceremony on May 14, 2020, International Dylan Thomas Day.

ANDREA LAWLOR and LING MA are among the winners of the 2020 Whiting Awards, which give $50,000 each “to ten emerging writers in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama,” funded by the Whit­ing Foundation and selected by an anonymous committee.

Max Porter (by Lucy Dickens)

MAX PORTER‘s Lanny (Fa­ber & Faber) is on the on the long­list for the £10,000 RSL Ondaatje Prize 2020. The 2020 shortlist will be announced April 20, 2020, and the winner on May 4, 2020.

CADWELL TURNBULL‘s The Lesson (Blackstone) was longlisted for the $5,000 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, presented by Vir­ginia Commonwealth University. The winner will be announced June 1, 2020.

CHLOE ARIDJIS‘s Sea Mon­sters (Catapult) won the $15,000 prize PEN/Faulkner Award for Fic­tion. Aridjis and the finalists, includ­ing Maurice Carlos Ruffin for We Cast a Shadow (One World) and Yiyun Li for Where Reasons End (Random House), will be honored in a 40th Anniversary PEN/Faulkner Award Celebration tribute video that will be released on May 4, 2020.

MALLORY O’MEARA‘s The Lady from the Black Lagoon: Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick (Hanover Square) won the 18th Annual Rondo Hatton Classic Hor­ror Awards in the Book of the Year category.

YIYUN LI and HELEN PHIL­LIPS are among the 175 Guggen­heim Fellows for 2020, announced by the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and awarded “on the basis of prior achievement and exceptional promise.”

SAM J. MILLER will judge the $5,000 Neukom Institute Literary Arts Awards in the debut author and open author categories. The shortlist will be selected by a jury and an­nounced in May, with final winners chosen by Miller and announced in June 2020 at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire.

Books Sold

LAURELL K. HAMILTON sold short novel Rafael, set in the world of Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, to Cindy Hwang at Berk­ley via Merrilee Heifetz of Writers House.

KELLEY ARMSTRONG sold books six and seven in the Rockton series to Kelley Ragland at Minotaur via Lucienne Diver of the Knight Agency.

JASON HELLER‘s punk rock fantasy Repeater sold to Joe Monti at Saga Press via Eddie Schneider of JABberwocky Literary Agency.

MICHELLE SAGARA sold the 16th volume in the Chronicles of Elantra and another book to Margot Mallinson at Mira via Russell Ga­len of Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency.

KAARON WARREN sold col­lection Tool Tales (with photo­graphs by ELLEN DATLOW) and middle-grade novella Morace’s Story, and resold Slights, Mistifi­cation, and Walking the Tree (to be “augmented with new creative material”) to IFWG Publishing Australia. IFWG Publishing Inter­national will publish in the US.

Rory Power (by Henriette Lazaridis)

RORY POWER sold fan­tasy In a Garden Burning Gold and a second title to Sarah Peed at Del Rey at auction, via Kim Witherspoon and Jessica Mileo of Inkwell Management. UK rights sold to Titan Books via Jenny Hewson of Lutyens & Rubinstein.

CLAIRE LIGHT, writing as JADIE JANG, sold fantasy Mon­key Around to Kate Coe at Solaris via Amanda Leuck of Spencerhill Associates.

G.R. MacALLISTER‘s The Five Queendoms (“A feminist Game of Thrones“) and two more books went to Joe Monti at Saga Press via Holly Root of Root Lit­erary.

LINDSAY ELLIS sold Truth of the Divine, sequel to Axiom’s End, and another book in the series to Peter Wolverton at St. Martin’s via Christopher Herme­lin of Fischer-Harbage Agency.

MARISSA LEVIEN‘s colony ship novel The World Gives Way went to Angeline Rodriguez at Orbit at auction via Sarah Bedingfield of Levine Greenberg Rostan.

JIM LEWIS sold a novel set in a New York City “in which the laws of time and space have been subtly suspended, the dead live and the living die” to Derek Kris­soff at West Virginia University Press via Ellen Levine of Trident Media Group.

RYKA AOKI‘s Light from Un­common Stars and a second book went to Lindsey Hall at Tor in a pre-empt via Meredith Kaffel Simonoff of DeFiore and Company.

KATE FOLK‘s collection The Void Wife, “which combines ele­ments of speculative fiction, horror, and magical realism,” and a second book went to Clio Seraphim at Ran­dom House at auction via Emma Patterson of Brandt & Hochman.

RACHEL HAWKINS, writing as ERIN STERLING, sold romantic fantasy The Ex Hex to Tessa Wood­ward at Avon via Holly Root of Root Literary.

EDWARD ASHTON‘s space opera Mickey7 went to Michael Rowley at Solaris at auction via Paul Lucas at Janklow & Nesbit.

STEPHEN BLACKMOORE‘s next three books in the Eric Carter noir urban fantasy series – Suicide Kings, Hate Machine, and Cult Classic – sold to Betsy Wollheim at DAW via Lisa Rodgers of JAB­berwocky Literary Agency.

W.M. AKERS sold Westside Lights in his Gilda Carr alternate history series to David Pomerico at Voyager via Sharon Pelletier of Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.

Korean author UN-SU KIM‘s 2006 debut The Cabinet will be published in English for the first time by Eleanor Teasdale at Angry Robot, who acquired rights in a pre-empt via Barbara Zitwer of Barbara Zitwer Agency.

ALEX DiFRANCESCO‘s col­lection Transmutation went to Dan Simon at Seven Stories via Natalie Kimber of the Rights Factory.

ETO MORI‘s debut Colorful, translated from the Japanese by Jocelyne Allen, went to Jack Shoe­maker at Counterpoint, with Yukiko Tominaga and Jennifer Alton to edit, on behalf of Bungeishunju LTD.

CHANTAL JAMES sold South­ern Gothic fantasy None But the Righteous – “Jesmyn Ward meets Akwaeke Emezi” – to Jennifer Al­ton at Counterpoint via Stephanie Delman of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates.

M.A. GRANT sold three books in vampire series Whitehorn to Stephanie Doig at Carina Press via Deidre Knight of the Knight Agency.

BRIAN ANDREWS & JEF­FREY WILSON sold three books in the Shepherds, a “faith-based supernatural thriller series,” to Karen Watson at Tyndale, via Gina Panettieri at Talcott Notch Literary Services.

KATE CAYLEY‘s collection Householders, which includes genre material, sold to Dan Wells at Bib­lioasis via Barbara Berson of Helen Heller Agency.

BRETT RILEY‘s dystopian Lord of Order and fantasy Freaks sold to Imbrifex.

LEE MATTHEW GOLD­BERG‘s The Ancestor went to Chris Rhatigan at All Due Respect via Sam Hiyate of the Rights Factory.

JOY ROSS DAVIS sold The Madwoman of Preacher’s Cove to Nancy Cleary at Wyatt-MacK­enzie.

REBECCA ROSS sold fan­tasy Dreams Lie Beneath to Karen Chaplin at Quill Tree via Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary & Media.

LEONARD RICHARDSON‘s SF novel Situation Normal, with illustrations by BRITTANY HAGUE, sold to Athena Andreadis at Candlemark & Gleam.

LUNA JOYA sold Heart and Seek and Flash Point, books four and five in the Legacy series, to Tee Tate at City Owl Press.

R.T. COLEMAN‘s SF novel Vagabonder went to Olivia Knight at Aurelia Leo via Stephanie Hansen of Metamorphosis Literary Agency.

ADEN POLYDOROS sold fan­tasy The City Beautiful and a sec­ond book to Rebecca Kuss at Ink­yard Press via Thao Le at Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency.

CHARISSA WEAKS sold The Witch Collector and two more no­vellas in the trilogy to Tee Tate at City Owl Press.

FRAN WILDE‘s middle-grade The Sorries went to Maggie Leh­rman at Amulet.

NATASHA PULLEY‘s YA The Kingdoms (“Master and Com­mander meets The Man in the High Castle“) sold to Alison Hennessey at Bloomsbury UK and Grace McNamee at Bloombsury US in an exclusive submission via Jenny Sav­ille of Andrew Nurnberg Associates.

Fantasy novelist TASHA SURI sold her first YA, a historical Wuthering Heights retelling, to Emily Settle at Feiwel and Friends via Laura Crockett of TriadaUS Literary Agency.

ASTRID SCHOLTE‘s YA fan­tasy League of Liars went to Stacey Barney at Putnam Children’s via Hillary Jacobson of ICM.

ADRIENNE TOOLEY‘s YA fantasy Sofi and the Bone Song sold to Sarah McCabe at Simon Pulse via Jim McCarthy of Dystel, Goderich & Bourret.

AXIE OH sold The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea, a YA “femi­nist retelling of the Korean folktale ‘The Tale of Shim Cheong’,” to Em­ily Settle at Feiwel and Friends via Patricia Nelson at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency.

DESTINY SORIA‘s YA fantasy Fire with Fire went to Nicole Scla­ma at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s via Taylor Haggerty at Root Literary.

LAURA SEBASTIAN sold YA Castles in Their Bones to Krista Marino at Delacorte via John Cusick of Folio Literary Management.

CARRIE HARRIS‘s YA Elder God Dance Squad – “Bring It On meets Stranger Things” – sold to David Purse and Debbie Purse at Inked Entertainment via Kate Scha­fer Testerman of kt literary.

DESIDERIA MESA‘s first novel Bindle Punk Bruja and a second title went to David Pomerico at Voyager in a pre-empt via Rachel Brooks of BookEnds.

VERONICA HENRY sold first novel Bacchanal – “The Night Circus meets N.K. Jemisin and American Gods” – plus a second book to Adrienne Procaccini at 47North via Mary C. Moore of Kimberley Cameron & Associates.

First novelist XIRAN JAY ZHAO sold YA Iron Widow and a second book in a duology de­scribed as “Pacific Rim meets The Handmaid’s Tale, and inspired by East Asian myth,” to Peter Phillips at Penguin Canada Children’s via Rachel Brooks at BookEnds.

REGINA M. HANSEN‘s first novel, YA fantasy The Sea Tithe, went to Reka Simonsen at Atheneum in a preempt via David Dunton of the Harvey Klinger Agency.

LAUREN BLACKWOOD sold YA fantasy debut Within These Wicked Walls “an Ethiopian-inspired Jane Eyre retelling,” and a second book to Tiffany Shelton at Wednesday Books in a pre-empt via Lauren Spieller of TriadaUS Liter­ary Agency.

MEG LONG‘s first YA novel Cold the Night Fast the Wolves – “a sci-fi reimagining of the Iditarod sled dog race meets Mad Max” – and another title sold to Eileen Rothschild at Wednesday Books in a pre-empt via Alexandra Machinist of ICM.


ZAKIYA DALILA HARRIS sold The Other Black Girl to Bloomsbury UK at auction via Van­essa Kerr of Abner Stein on behalf of Stefanie Diaz in association with Stephanie Delman of Sanford J. Greenburger Associates. Atria is publishing in the US. TV rights were optioned by Hulu at auction, with Tara Duncan and Temple Hill to produce and Harris as co-writer and executive producer via Jasmine Lake and Addison Duffy of UTA on behalf of Delman.


Film rights to VERONICA ROTH‘s Chosen Ones were op­tioned by Picturestart in a pre-empt with Erik Feig and Roth to produce via Pouya Shahbazian and Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary & Me­dia.

TV rights to KIERSTEN WHITE‘s The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein were op­tioned by Sony Pictures Television via Lucy Stille at Agency for the Performing Arts on behalf of Mi­chelle Wolfson at Wolfson Literary Agency.

TIM PRATT will write space opera The Fractured Void, set in the world of strategy board game Twilight Imperium, for Aconyte Books via Ginger Clark of Curtis Brown.

This and more like it in the May 2020 issue of Locus.

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