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Profile Summary

While initially brought in to build the non-fiction client list for the Annette Green Authors' Agency, David quickly branched out to represent as many fiction clients as non-fiction. As such, he does have a particular love of non-fiction, particularly politics (he favours left wing), music, film, travel, history, and memoir. Even subject areas he isn't particularly familiar with or has no pre-existing passion for, David feels that if the manuscript were right, he'd be able to spot a winner.

When it comes to fiction, there is no specific genre David wants to see more of than another, but he is generally commercially focused. He won't rule out anything until he's tried it! While he works for a very small agency, they have never specialised in the kinds of clients they take on. At the end of the day, David and Annette follow their guts. If they love what they see, they'll be passionate advocates for your work.

David warns writers just starting out to avoid writing thinly-veiled wish-fulfillment. Agents and publishers will see straight through such things. Be sure to read and edit your work thoroughly before submitting. If there are cliches, typos, or grammatical issues -- especially in those first few pages -- you will put off agents for mistakes that could have been easily fixed. When it comes to what he's looking for in an exciting voice or style, David has said 'discipline, the flare and the surprise that really hook me.'

There's no one correct route to becoming David's client. He and Annette personally read all the submissions the agency receives through the slushpile and have been known to take on new clients that way. However, David is also open to other methods. Occasionally their existing clients will recommend other writers and the agency maintains close ties to many creative writing courses. The agency works in conjunction with several TV and film agencies and occasionally picks up writers looking to publish outside of the screen for the first time.



Detailed data

Agency:
Annette Green Authors Agency
Agent since:
2001
Short biography:
After graduating from Cambridge in 1985, David worked in sales, marketing and distribution at the Time Out publishing group, and also trained as a lawyer at one of the City of London's largest firms. In 2001, he joined Annette Green Authors Agency as a partner.
Client list status:
Open to new clients
Genres this agent is interested in:
Young adult fiction, Travel, Science, Politics, society & current affairs, Other non-fiction, Religion, Mind, Body, Spirit, Memoir and autobiography, Food and Cookery, History, Historical fiction, Crime, thriller, action, General Fiction, Literary Fiction
Authors & books liked:
Naturally I love all our own authors, but other contemporary favourites include Paul Auster, Ian McEwan, John Le Carre, Gerald Seymour, Julian Barnes, Sarah Waters, Salman Rushdie, Fay Weldon, Haruki Murakami, Deborah Moggach, Maggie O'Farrell. As for classic fiction Dickens is of course unbeatable. But my favourite novel of all is The Mill on the Floss by George Eliot. Keen on Austen, but not in love with her. Early Kingsley Amis still works for me. In non-fiction I can always devour books by Francis Wheen, Nick Cohen, Christopher Hitchens. Wheen's Karl Marx is the benchmark of biography for me, not least because he smuggles a line from a Bob Dylan song into it. Lisa Jardine, Mary Beard also excellent. I don't really have guilty pleasures, but I do sometimes wonder if I'm the only person who ever read Eric Idle's 70s novel 'Hello Sailor'.
Other loves & passions:
I'm a huge film fan, starved of recent brilliance, but loving Hitchcock, Howard Hawks, Jean Renoir, James Whale, Ida Lupino, Coppola, early Scorsese, George Romero, Arthur Penn, Rohmer, Bresson, Woody Allen. I also love cooking, I'm passionate about politics and geo-political affairs, from a heavily left-wing stance, and I love all kinds of music, often very ethnic stuff, as well as punk, blues, rock. Musical heroes are Dylan, Springsteen, Costello, Mitchell, Emmylou Harris, Neil Young, Joe Strummer, Bob Marley, Jimmy Cliff, Morrissey, Van Morrison. I love BBC 6Music, but I'm also addicted to Radio 4.
How to make a submission:
Agency standard submission.
Other advice and background:
Before you submit any work, read it and read it again. Then pick up one of your favourite books and read that. And then ask yourself honestly, is what I've written even close to being as good as this favourite book. If the answer is no then go back and rewrite for as long as it takes. Writing is immensely difficult and very few people can do it well. Be honest and ruthless with yourself. You can't fool the publishing world. Novels that are designed to be third rate Harry Potters: boy discovers special power, goes through portal, has to save kingdom etc. Novels about gap year backpacking. Novels that 'eschew' conventional narrative and simply bang on about how cross the late-adolescent author is about the state of the world. . Stereotype. Boring sentences that add nothing to a book. Laziness in writing. Historical writing that seems to think it has to adopt some kind of arch, lofty tone instead of aiming for authenticity. Stories about utterly implausible dystopian societies which posit the idea of extreme, perfect totalitarianism when we all know that totalitarianism is grubby, incompetent, flawed and riddled with corruption.
Attends Festival of Writing or other WW events?
No
Follow on Twitter:
@djxsmith
Interesting links:
http://www.writewords.org.uk/interviews/david_smith.asp
Clients:
This agency does not produce an individual agent client list. The following names represent the agency's full client list. Fiction authors include: Caro Adams, Julie Armstrong, Charlotte Betts, Bill Broady, Emily Bullock, Meg Cabot, Simon Conway, Victoria Connelly, Simon Dale, David Evans, Patricia Ferguson, Tara Gould, Margo Jackson, Julia Jones, Ariel Kahn, Frances Kay, Claire King, Geves Lafosse, Catherine Marshall, Stephen May, Maria McCann, Sam Meekings, Barbara Mitchelhill, Christopher Neilan, Helen Newall, Jenny Newman, Giles Paley-Phillips, Alex Pheby, Imogen Robertson, Sarah Salway, Kirsty Scott, Bernadette Strachan, Deborah Swift, Bev Thomas, Juliet Thomas, Patrick Thompson, Eoghan Walls, Craig Watson, Elizabeth Woodcraft, Andrew Wright. Non Fiction authors: Andrew Baker, Tim Bradford, Malcolm Burgess, David Cromwell, Terry Darlington, Mark Doyle, Jim Driver, Leaf Fielding, Matt Ford, Chris Gordon, Jamie Ivey, Geves Lafosse, Jon Leyne, Adam Macqueen, Ian Marchant, Laura Marcus, Lillys Miles, Jonathan Neale, Professor Charles Pasternak, Lilian Pizzichini, Justin Ruthven-Tyers, Peter Shapiro, The Very Revd Victor Stock
Full client list:
http://www.annettegreenagency.co.uk/clientlistfiction_62338.html
Email address:
david@annettegreenagency.co.uk

Agents of: Annette Green Authors Agency

Agency details

Website:
http://www.annettegreenagency.co.uk/
About the agency:
This is an independent literary agency founded in 1998 by Annette Green. The agency now enjoys a reputation for discovering major new talents, striking enviable deals and looking after the interests of its clients with energy and efficiency. We have always followed an energetic policy of seeking out the very best undiscovered writers of fiction; of encouraging leading figures from the worlds of broadcasting, politics, academia, media and entertainment into publishing projects; and of offering our clients a personal service that is second to none. What we look for in fiction and non-fiction alike is vision, imagination, originality, and invention, conveyed in writing which inspires passionate enthusiasm.
Address for submissions:
No data
Office address:
5 Henwoods Mount, Pembury, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN2 4BH United Kingdom
Email address:
annette@annettegreenagency.co.uk
Phone number:
01892 514275
Number of agents:
2
Accepts email submissions:
Yes
Submission type:
Standard (Letter + Synopsis + First three chapters)
Further submission info:
If you wish to submit material to us please send or email a short covering letter, a brief synopsis, and between 5,000 and 10,000 words from your book: ideally the opening chapters. If you are submitting material to other agencies at the same time please tell us in your letter. If you are sending hard copy please also include a stamped self addressed envelope for our reply and for anything you need returned. If you do not include an s.a.e. or an email address we will be unable to reply. Submissions should be addressed simply to the agency, not to individuals. Please do not send cheques or cash for return postage. We are unable to return material unless you enclose a stamped addressed envelope. Please do not send material by recorded delivery. We aim to respond within four weeks but at very busy times it can take longer.
More info on this agency:
This is an independent literary agency founded in 1998 by Annette Green. After several years at A M Heath & Co - one of the oldest agencies in London - she decided to set up her own business and seek out new, exciting writers of fiction and non-fiction. Aware that not all writers are happy in the environment of the large corporate agencies, she was determined that her agency would offer an alternative. This took the form of a personally attentive, individual service to writers whose work she admired. Rather than working through assistants and secretaries, a client of this agency would deal only with his or her agent. The philosophy has worked and the agency now enjoys a reputation for discovering major new talents, striking enviable deals and looking after the interests of its clients with energy and efficiency. In 2001 David Smith joined as a partner, during a period of rapid expansion. After graduating from Cambridge in 1985 he spent many years working in sales, marketing and distribution at the Time Out publishing group, and also trained as a lawyer at one of the City of Londons largest firms. We have always followed an energetic policy of seeking out the very best undiscovered writers of fiction; of encouraging leading figures from the worlds of broadcasting, politics, academia, media and entertainment into publishing projects; and of offering our clients a personal service that is second to none. What we look for in fiction and non-fiction alike is vision, imagination, originality, and invention, conveyed in writing which inspires passionate enthusiasm.
Average response time:
4 days
Agency Transparency Index:
48/100
Member of the AAA:
Yes
Overseas offices:
No data
Accepts overseas writers:
No
Follow on Twitter:
None
Latest news:
http://www.annettegreenagency.co.uk/news_62236.html
More about the agency:
This is an independent literary agency founded in 1998 by Annette Green. The agency now enjoys a reputation for discovering major new talents, striking enviable deals and looking after the interests of its clients with energy and efficiency. We have always followed an energetic policy of seeking out the very best undiscovered writers of fiction; of encouraging leading figures from the worlds of broadcasting, politics, academia, media and entertainment into publishing projects; and of offering our clients a personal service that is second to none. What we look for in fiction and non-fiction alike is vision, imagination, originality, and invention, conveyed in writing which inspires passionate enthusiasm.

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