New York Rights Fair program

2019 New York Rights Fair program

Wednesday, May 29

Opening Talk


12:00-12:45 pm
An Inside Look: Hello Sunshine

Driven by a singular mission to change the narrative for women, Reese Witherspoon's company initially made a name for itself in literary circles as a production company dedicated to female authorship and storytelling. Now with one of the most vibrant book clubs around, and forays into everything from scripted and unscripted television, premium cable, streaming shows and feature films to podcasts and audio storytelling, Hello Sunshine is much more than a production company. In this session, two Hello Sunshine executives will address the media brand's vision, how it sees itself working with various forms of literary content, and how it would like to work with a variety of players in the book space, from publishers to booksellers.

Discussion moderator:
Jason Boog Jason Boog, Author, Journalist and West Coast Correspondent, Publishers Weekly
Charlotte Koh Charlotte Koh, Head of Digital Media & Unscripted, Hello Sunshine
Lauren Neustadter Lauren Neustadter, Head of Film and Television, Hello Sunshine


The International Landscape

1:15-2:00 pm
International Blockbusters

The number of books in translation published in the U.S. is alarmingly low, languishing for years at a mere 3%. There's a perception that that translations don't sell. Why? Here we look at four books, written in languages other than English that have become global bestsellers. What sets them apart? How did they gain momentum in the market, first with industry professionals and then with readers? And what can U.S. publishers take away from the success of these books, to publish more works in translation in the States?

The Children's Train by Viola Ardone

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

M: The Son of the XX Century by Antonio Scurati

The Plotters by Un-su Kim

GabriellaGabriella Page-Fort, Editorial Director, Amazon Crossing
Marleen Seegers Marleen Seegers, Owner
foreign rights agent, 2 Seas Agency
Peter Borland Peter Borland, VP & Editor-in-Chief, Atria Books, Simon & Schuster, Inc.
Claire Sabatie-Garat Claire Sabatie-Garat, Literary Agent, The Italian Literary Agency
Barbara Zitwer Barbara Zitwer, Owner and President, Barbara J Zitwer Agency

Inside the World of Foreign Rights Sales and Scouting

Foreign rights sales account for a significant portion of the revenue that publishers and authors make on their books. But how are these rights sold? And what makes one American title more appealing to a foreign house than another? In this discussion, we will get the inside scoop on how foreign rights are sold from professionals who specialize in this aspect of the business, from scouts to specialists working for both publishers and literary agencies.

Kelly Farber Kelly Farber, Owner/Scout, KF Literary Scouting LLC
Denise Cronin Denise Cronin, Senior Vice President, Director, Subsidiary Rights, Random House Group, Penguin Random House
Rebecca Gardner Rebecca Gardner, Vice-President and Rights Director, The Gernert Company
Marleen Reimer Marleen Reimer, Senior Scout, Maria B. Campbell Associates
Stefanie Diaz Stefanie Diaz, Director of International Rights, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates, Inc.

Market Focus: Brexit and the U.K. Book Biz—What Does it Mean?

Although U.K. voters cast their ballot to leave the E.U. over two years ago, the details of Brexit remain fuzzy. Will the Commonwealth face what's known as a "hard Brexit" and leave behind all of the trade agreements membership in the block brought? Will politicians be able to work out another deal? Will another "leave vote" be put to the public? Robert Powell, an expert on the topic with the Economist Intelligence Unit, will open this talk with a presentation about what Brexit might look like and how it could affect various industries in the U.K. His talk will then segue into a discussion with U.K. publishing professionals about their biggest concerns regarding how Brexit may affect the U.K. book business.

Featuring an opening talk from Robert Powell followed by a discussion

Robert Powell Robert Powell, Editorial Director Americas, The Economist Intelligence Unit (The EIU)
Discussion Moderater:
Liz Thomson Liz Thomson, Author and Journalist, The Village Trip
Richard Charkin Richard Charkin, Founder, Mensch Publishing
Isobel Dixon Isobel Dixon, Director & Head of Book, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency Ltd

International Literature: Promoting and Finding Audiences

Over the past decade, there has been a lot of focus on the "3% Problem" (less than 3% of all books published in America are translated into English) and on the production of more works in translation. But simply increasing the number of published works of international literature is not enough—for an interest in international literature to continue to expand among English readers, the industry needs to focus on developing larger audiences for these works. This panel will explore a variety of initiatives—from the new National Book Award for Translation, to the impact of the Man Booker International Prize, to the Booksellers without Borders program—to identify ways in which to get translated literature into the hands of more readers.

Chad Post Chad Post, Founder, Open Letter Books
Michael Reynolds Michael Reynolds, Editor in Chief, Europa Editions
Nick Buzanski Nick Buzanski, General Manager/Buyer, Book Culture NYC
Lisa Lucas Lisa Lucas, Executive Director, National Book Foundation
Jennifer Croft Jennifer Croft, Writer and Translator, New York Public Library

5:00-6:00 pm
2019 Best Translated Book Award Winners Announcement and Reception (open to all New York Rights Fair attendees) presented by Chad Post

Thursday, May 30

Page to Screen


Stream Me: How the Rise of Streaming Platforms is Changing Hollywood's Appetite for Literary Material

Netflix is now a player in the Oscar race. Amazon is winning Emmies. As the traditional studio system continues to be reshaped by the explosion of streaming outlets, film scouts and co-agents will address the impact for authors and publishers. Is more literary material being optioned? Is there more money to be made on film and TV adaptations? Or is it more complicated?
Jason Boog Jason Boog, Author, Journalist and West Coast Correspondent, Publishers Weekly
Jody Hotchkiss Jody Hotchkiss, Managing Partner, Hotchkiss Daily & Associates
Hardy Justice Hardy Justice, Senior Vice President, Maven Pictures
Kevin Cotter Kevin Cotter, VP of Literary Affairs, Anonymous Content
Lucy Stille Lucy Stille, Motion Picture Literary Agent, Agency for the Performing Arts

11:15-12:00 pm
Film Scouting and Co-Agenting—An In-Depth Look:

Which books wind up being made into movies or TV shows can seem like the result of a process that primarily relies on luck or chance. In actuality, film scouts and co-agents have a heavy hand in controlling the flow of literary material from New York to Los Angeles. Their ideas about what books will work on screen play a significant role in many of the options that take place... and the adaptations that ultimately see a book become a TV show or film. Here we talk to some of the leading professionals in this space about how they work and what trends are driving the current book-to-film marketplace.
Marcy Drogin Marcy Drogin, Literary Scout and President, Maximum Films & Mgmt.
Howie Sanders Howie Sanders, Co-Head, Media Rights, Anonymous Content.
Angela Cheng Caplan Angela Cheng Caplan, Owner, Cheng Caplan Company, Inc.
Mark James Mark James, Principal, James Literary Consulting
Emily Conner Emily Conner, Founder, Conner Literary

Book to Screen—From Option to Production:

Many books get optioned, but very few are actually adapted into movies or TV shows. Producers are often key figures in taking literary material from page to screen. This talk will feature two producers who've overseen the development of books from the early stage of acquisition through the production and distribution cycle. They will explain the kinds of things that can derail a book-to-film project and, conversely, the things needed to ensure a project beats the odds and makes it to the screen.
Ryan Doherty Ryan Doherty, Executive Editor, Celadon Books
Gillian Bohrer Gillian Bohrer, Executive Vice President, Fox 2000 Picture
Chris Goldberg Chris Goldberg, Producer, Winterlight Pictures
Braden Aftergood Braden Aftergood, Principal, Balboa Productions

Diverse Content in Publishing and Hollywood:

It may be a hot topic in both publishing and Hollywood, but don't call diversity a trend. Pushes from consumers and industry members to make these businesses more inclusive—both in the makeup of their workforces and the type of content they champion—have been front and center in the media for some time. But where do things stand now? What kind of hurdles do diverse artists face in getting their stories through the gatekeepers controlling these industries? Why are companies big and small still struggling to bring in more diverse hires? How is consumer demand shaping the push for diversity, if it does at all? We will talk to leading professionals from both the book and film industries about how diversity is, and is not, driving the conversation in these entertainment businesses.
Regina Brooks Regina Brooks, President, Serendipity Literary Agency
Tracy Sherrod Tracy Sherrod, Editorial Director, Amistad Press
Michelle Weiner Michelle Weiner, Department Head, CAA
Hilary Zaitz Michael Hilary Zaitz Michael, Literary Packaging Agent, William Morris Endeavor
Marietta Zacker Marietta Zacker, Literary Agent, Gallt & Zacker Literary Agency


The second edition of TALKING PICTURES: Selected Books honors excellence in book design in five categories: Contemporary Art and Photography; Architecture and Graphic Design; Children's Picture Books; Comic Books and Graphic Novels; and Cookbooks. The 2019 batch of selected books will be presented and discussed in depth by members of the TALKING PICTURES jury. The panel will feature two 2019 winners, Swedish artist Jockum Nordström and French illustrator Tom Haugomat, and one 2018 winner, Manuele Fior.

Introduction by Elena Pasoli, Project Manager, Bologna Children's Book Fair, BolognaFiere


Steven Guarnaccia, Associate Professor, Illustration, Parsons School of Design

Ilaria Tontardini, Hamelin Associazione Culturale

Mark Newgarden, Comics Artist and Adjunct Professor, Illustration, Parsons School of Design

Manuele Fior, 2018 Comic Books Winner, The Interview

Jockum Nordström, 2019 Children's Picture Books Winner and Illustrator, Fabler och Andra BerättelserTom Haugomat, 2019 Children's Picture Books Winner and Author, À Travers

TALKING PICTURES Selected Books Honoree Reception (open to all New York Rights Fair attendees)

Friday, May 31

Selected Genres: A Deep Dive


Market Trends—Frontlist Adult Fiction

For years now, domestic suspense titles have been dominating the fiction charts. So-called "girl" books, from "Gone Girl" to "Girl on the Train," has been one of the major trends in frontlist fiction. Has this finally abated? Has another subgenre come in to take its place? In this talk, editors and literary agents will discuss what's been selling in fiction, and where they see the market moving in the coming seasons.

Annie Hwang Annie Hwang, Literary Agent, Folio Literary Management
Amy Einhorn Amy Einhorn, Executive Vice President and Publisher, Flatiron Books
Sally Kim Sally Kim, Vice President, Editor in Chief, G. P. Putnam's Sons, an imprint of Penguin Random House
Dorian Karchmar Dorian Karchmar, Partner and Agent, William Morris Endeavor
Melissa Flashman Melissa Flashman, Literary Agent, Janklow & Nesbit Associates

Market Trends—Middle Grade and YA

In recent years, YA and MG titles have been dominated by blockbuster franchises; fantasies featuring young wizards gave way to dystopian tales of teenagers vying for survival. Now, though, no single series dominates the children's fiction charts. So what's next? We will speak with leading YA and MG editors and agents about what has been selling and why... and what new franchises are on the rise.

Amy Gordon Amy Gordon, VP, Children's and YA Literary Scout, Bettina Schrewe Literary Scouting
Jenny Bent Jenny Bent, President, The Bent Agency
Stacey Barney Stacey Barney, Executive Director, Penguin Random House
Rosemary Stimola Rosemary Stimola, President and Founder, Stimola Literary Studio
David Levithan David Levithan, VP/Publisher and Editorial Director, Scholastic

Market Trends—Nonfiction, Politics

Politics may be dividing much of the country, but it's proven a boon for the book industry. Authors including Michael Wolff and Bob Woodward have published some of the most successful books of their careers—and of the last year—thanks, in large part, to the fascination the country has with one of the most divisive presidents to ever sit in the White House. With politics a red-hot category, we turn to some of the leading editors and agents buying and selling these books. Do political book sales show any sign of cooling off? Is the subject driving the recent blockbusters, namely President Trump, going to change? Is there room in this space for smaller books, about things other than the president, to break out?


Jaya Aninda Chatterjee Jaya Aninda Chatterjee, Editor, Yale University Press
Paul Whitlatch Paul Whitlatch, Executive Editor, Hachette Book Group
Keith Urban Keith Urban, Founding Partner & President, Javelin
Rafe Sagalyn Rafe Sagalyn, Partner, ICM Partners
Eric Nelson Eric Nelson, Executive Editor, Harper, VP, Editorial Director, Broadside Books