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Profile Summary

Caroline Dawnay is a well-known agent in literary London with over thirty years’ experience in the business. She is a co-founder of United Agents and one of their most senior agents.  

Unsurprisingly given her career history, Caroline has a long and illustrious client list and represents a diverse range of fiction and non-fiction.  As with many well-established agents she has a very limited online presence so we have drawn our pointers from Caroline’s extensive client list on the United Agents' website and a few other sources tracked down by our researchers:

  • Dawnay was awarded Literary Agent of the Year at the 2014 Bookseller Industry Award.  The judges proclaimed her literary list to be ‘one of the deepest in agenting’.
  • This is an agent with a nose for unique narrative voices.  She has represented Man Booker Prize winner, Eleanor Catton (The Luminaries), since the beginning of her career
  • Best selling fiction writers include Jill Dawson (Fred and Edie, Watch Me Disappear) and Chris Brookmyre (The Madden Crime Series)
  • Her non-fiction list is incredibly varied and encompasses architecture, music, history (Dan Snow, Philip Eade), biography (Hermione Lee, Philip Ziegler), philosophy (Alain de Botton), art, nature (journalist and photographer John Reader) and cartoons (Posy Simmonds)
  • Described as a 'canny exploiter of traditional publishing deals and new opportunities'
  • In 2007, she co-wrote ‘An Alphabet of Aunts’ with Mungo McCosh
  • Served as President of the Association of Authors' Agents from 1994-97

Given Caroline’s profile, we think it is highly unlikely that she is actively building her list.  



Detailed data

Agency:
United Agents
Agent since:
1981
Short biography:

Born in 1950, Caroline Dawnay has been a literary agent since 1981. She has been a director at a variety of agencies including AD Peters & Co and PDF. She co-founded United Agents in 2008 and served as President of the AAA from 1994-7. She represents many successful authors, including Alain de Botton and Christopher Brookmyre.

Caroline Dawnay started her agenting career in 1977 at A.D. Peters. She was Literary Agent of the Year in 2014.

She is interested in serious nonfiction and literary fiction. 

Client list status:
List largely complete
Genres this agent is interested in:
Science, Politics, society & current affairs, Other non-fiction, Religion, Memoir and autobiography, History, Literary Fiction
Authors & books liked:

No Data.

Other loves & passions:

No Data.

How to make a submission:
As an agency, we value and welcome approaches from prospective authors. Instead of writing generally to the Book Department, however, we request that you take a look at our literary agents' pages on our website, and make a specific and informed approach to one agent only.
Other advice and background:

No Data.

Attends Festival of Writing or other WW events?
No
Follow on Twitter:
Does not Tweet
Interesting links:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2007/oct/14/features.review
Clients:
Rennie Airth, Kate Auspitz, Laura Beatty, Tom Bingham (Estate), Bernardine Bishop, William Blacker, Alain de Botton, Susie Boyt, Christopher Brookmyre, Dr Michael Brooks, Craig Brown, James Buchan, Jonathan Carr (Estate), Eleanor Catton, Charles Chadwick, Catherine Chidgey, Rupert Christiansen, Charles Clover, Kate Colquhoun, Peter Conrad, Jennifer Cryer, Gillian Darley, Jill Dawson, Guy Deutscher, Charles Dowding, Philip Eade, Toby Faber, James Le Fanu, Tom Fort, Matthew Fort, Richard Francis, Chrystia Freeland, John Fuller, Tim Gautreaux, Gretchen Gerzina, Paul Ginsborg, Charlotte Grimshaw, Valerie Grove, Tessa Hadley, James Hall, Lynsey Hanley, Alexandra Harris, David Hendy, Richard Holloway, Tony Hope, Penelope Hughes-Hallett (Estate), Peter Jones, Sheena Joughin, Martin Kemp, Alexander Kent, Nick Lane, Richard Layard, Hermione Lee, Margaret MacMillan, Field Maloney, Anna McGrail, Daphne Metland, Chris Mullin, James Mylet, Jeremy Mynott, Virginia Nicholson, Sally Muir & Joanna Osborne, Lewis Page, Edward Platt, Jennifer Potter, John Reader, Douglas Reeman, Matthew Rice, Jane Ridley, Gillian Rose (Estate), Tayeb Salih (Estate), Said Sayrafiezadeh, Posy Simmonds, Sid Smith, Helen Smith, Dan Snow, Donald Sturrock, Stephen Taylor, Tony Thompson, Tom Vanderbilt, Nigel Warburton, James Owen Weatherall, Abigail Wheatcroft, Ann Widdecombe, Kenneth Williams (Estate), Dirk Wittenborn, Philip Ziegler, Sofka Zinovieff
Full client list:
http://unitedagents.co.uk/caroline-dawnay?dept=3
Email address:
sscard@unitedagents.co.uk

Agency details

Website:
http://unitedagents.co.uk/
About the agency:
United Agents was established in 2007, following the departure of all 75 members of staff from PDF (Peters Dunlop Fraser), in protest against PDF's parent company. UA is owned by its employees. UA represents actors, authors, cinematographers, composers, designers, directors, editors, playwrights, presenters, and voiceover artists. United Agents is currently in the final stage of negotiations to take over A.P. Watt, the world's longest-established literary agency. UA claim to offer its clients "unrivalled service and creative opportunities with a unique understanding of traditional and emerging media platforms".
Address for submissions:
12-26 Lexington Street, London W1F 0LE
Office address:
No data
Email address:
info@unitedagents.co.uk
Phone number:
020 3214 0800
Number of agents:
18
Accepts email submissions:
Yes
Submission type:
Standard (Letter + Synopsis + First three chapters)
Further submission info:
As an agency, we value and welcome approaches from prospective authors. Instead of writing generally to the Book Department, however, we request that you take a look at our literary agents' pages on our website, and make a specific and informed approach to one agent only. Each agent may have specific requests in terms of how they wish to receive material, and those instructions will be on their individual pages. Generally, we ask you to email a full outline for non-fiction projects, or a synopsis of your novel and the first three chapters, together with covering note telling us about yourself and your writing career to date.
More info on this agency:
No data
Average response time:
8 days
Agency Transparency Index:
34/100
Member of the AAA:
Yes
Overseas offices:
None
Accepts overseas writers:
No
Follow on Twitter:
@unitedagents
Latest news:
http://unitedagents.co.uk/news_archive
More about the agency:
United Agents was established in 2007, following the departure of all 75 members of staff from PDF (Peters Dunlop Fraser), in protest against PDF's parent company. UA is owned by its employees. UA represents actors, authors, cinematographers, composers, designers, directors, editors, playwrights, presenters, and voiceover artists. United Agents is currently in the final stage of negotiations to take over A.P. Watt, the world's longest-established literary agency. UA claim to offer its clients "unrivalled service and creative opportunities with a unique understanding of traditional and emerging media platforms".

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