New to Agent Hunter? View our welcome video (01.30), read more about the site, or view subscription options.

Profile Summary

After 20 years experience in the publishing industry as an editor, in big name firms such as Waterstones, Harrap, BBC Books, and Headline, Heather set-up the HHB Agency in 2005. Heather represents a wide variety of non-fiction authors covering subjects like history, medicine, travel, craft, cookery, humour, and popular culture. When it comes to fiction, Heather's particular interests cover women's fiction, crime and thrillers, as well as historical novels. As with most agents, Heather highlights two key pieces to works she will consider taking on: quality writing and commercial potential.

It is very important, says Heather, that writers are happy with their manuscripts before they start the submission process. You only have one opportunity to make a first impression, so make it count. Similarly, before an agent begins sending in your work to publishers, they will work with an author to polish and perfect the manuscript as well as developing a killer pitch.

In working with her clients, Heather places a good deal of importance on coming up with the perfect title. Before an editor gets to reading the manuscript, they will see the title front and centre. As such, the title needs to grab the reader's attention in an instant. Heather says that the best titles are 'topical, intriguing or witty and to the point'.

The landscape of the publishing industry is rapidly changing and fewer writers are able to make a living solely off their writing. Heather doesn't see this as necessarily a negative, however, pointing to the number of writers who thrive under pressure and use their work lives as inspiration for writing.



Detailed data

Agency:
HHB Agency
Agent since:
2005
Short biography:
Heather Holden-Brown was a publishing editor for 20 years with Waterstone's, Harrap, BBC Books and Headline before setting up hhb agency ltd in 2005. Heather is a member of Kingston University's Publishers' Advisory Board and in 2004 assessed the food and cookery books for the Andre Simon Memorial Fund's annual awards. She is also a governor of Tudor Hall School in Banbury, Oxfordshire, and a trustee of the Sparrow Schools Foundation which provides education for disadvantaged children in South Africa.
Client list status:
Open to new clients
Genres this agent is interested in:
Travel, Science, Politics, society & current affairs, Other non-fiction, Religion, Mind, Body, Spirit, Memoir and autobiography, Food and Cookery, History, Women's fiction, Historical fiction, Crime, thriller, action, General Fiction, Literary Fiction
Authors & books liked:
Journalism, history and politics, travel and adventure, contemporary autobiography and biography, books about words and numbers, popular culture and quirky humour, entertainment and television, business, family memoir, food and cookery. The title of the book matters hugely. I want something that excites me, something that will draw a similarly instant reaction from any publisher I mention it to. So go for something that is topical, intriguing or witty and to the point. In general writers have one chance to pitch a book to an agent or publisher, so it's important that you don't do so until you are happy with what you're sending them. It's the same with submitting to publishers as to an agent. I have one chance to get their attention with each new manuscript I offer. They may comment on what they don't like, but they will not want to keep seeing resubmissions of the same thing. Rather than taking heart from the new bits, they will spot what did not appeal to them in the first place. Besides her work at the agency Heather enjoys reading Historical Biography and Womens' Fiction.
Other loves & passions:
Heather enjoys exploring London and the Thames, visiting historic houses and churches, theatre and cooking for friends.
How to make a submission:
Agency standard submission.
Other advice and background:
Excessive expectations! HHB is quoted by the Independent as saying, "I think that the best books are often written within the pressures of daily life. What is happening more is that creative writing courses are promulgating the idea that you have to be a professional writer, but that is not true and it is increasingly hard to be." Heather has told us her pet hates include: "Using my first name when people haven't met me and contacting all three agents within the agency instead of researching and contacting the most appropriate", so do your research people!
Attends Festival of Writing or other WW events?
No
Follow on Twitter:
Does not Tweet
Interesting links:
http://www.writersandartists.co.uk/writers/advice/30/preparing-for-submission/how-to-find-a-literary-agent/when-should-you-send-your-manuscript
Clients:
The following names represent the agency's full client list: Anjum Anand, Nick Barratt, Peter Baxter, Jo Behari, Vatch Bhumichitr, Tina Bricknell-Webb, Roy 'The Boy' Brindley, Emma Burstell, Ben Chu, Matilda Culme-Seymour, Clarissa Dickson Wright, Dr Pierre Dukan, Fiona Duncan, Francis Elliott, Pete Firman, Daniel Galmiche, Luke Gamble, Alison Gangel, Tiffany Goodall, Miranda Gore Browne, Sarah Griffin, Mary Gwynn, Trina Hahnemann, James Hanning, Alice Hart, Valentina Harris, Matthew Hussey, Tom Kevill-Davies, Cassie Knight, Jane Lovett, Hannah Miles, Ben Miller, Alex Mitchell, Alex Mitchell, Frank Muir, Dave Nasser, Emma Oxford, Ben Palmer, Stevie Parle, Dr Max Pemberton, Elizabeth Peyton-Jones, Sonia Purnell, Sarah Randell, Kathryn Rogers, Rosemary Shrager, Graham Singleton, Christopher Stevens, Diane Taylor, Louis Walsh, Isla Whitcroft, Angela Young.
Full client list:
http://hhbagency.com/index.php/authors/
Email address:
heather@hhbagency.com

Agents of: HHB Agency

Agency details

Website:
http://www.hhbagency.com/
About the agency:
hhb agency ltd was founded in 2005 by Heather Holden-Brown. The agency represents writers of non-fiction - in particular, journalism, history and politics, travel and adventure, contemporary autobiography and biography, books about words and numbers, popular culture and quirky humour, entertainment and television, business, family memoir, food and cookery - and commercial fiction. hhb agency is proud of its dynamic community of writers. A small and friendly company, it represents both established bestselling authors and talented, fresh voices new to the book world.
Address for submissions:
6 Warwick Court, London WC1R 5DJ
Office address:
No data
Email address:
claire@hhbagency.com
Phone number:
020 7405 5525
Number of agents:
1
Accepts email submissions:
Yes
Submission type:
Other - see details
Further submission info:
hhb agency ltd is always pleased to hear from talented writers. Please call or email Claire Houghton-Price before sending in your material. Please do not send international postal vouchers with submissions. As a small agency which believes strongly in regular and consultative personal contact, we do not represent writers based beyond Europe.
More info on this agency:
No data
Average response time:
8 days
Agency Transparency Index:
51/100
Member of the AAA:
Yes
Overseas offices:
No data
Accepts overseas writers:
No
Follow on Twitter:
@hhbagencyltd
Latest news:
No data
More about the agency:
hhb agency ltd was founded in 2005 by Heather Holden-Brown. The agency represents writers of non-fiction - in particular, journalism, history and politics, travel and adventure, contemporary autobiography and biography, books about words and numbers, popular culture and quirky humour, entertainment and television, business, family memoir, food and cookery - and commercial fiction. hhb agency is proud of its dynamic community of writers. A small and friendly company, it represents both established bestselling authors and talented, fresh voices new to the book world.

Similar agents

Eve White
White set up her agency in 2003 after working as an actress for 20 yea ...
View agent
Oliver Munson
Oli Munson joined A.M. Heath in 2012 having spent nine years at Blake ...
View agent
Lesley Thorne
Lesley Thorne is a director of the agency and runs the Film/TV Rights ...
View agent
Andrew Lownie
Andrew Lownie was born in 1961 and was educated in Britain and America ...
View agent
Amy Waite
Amy joined the Agency in March 2013 having previously worked at Greene ...
View agent
Jane Turnbull
Jane was Rights Director of two major publishing houses - Hamish Hamil ...
View agent
Anne Williams
Anne Williams worked for over fifteen years as a commissioning editor, ...
View agent
Liz Puttick
Liz Puttick is Director of the Puttick Agency specializing in mind/bod ...
View agent
Heather Holden Brown
Heather Holden-Brown was a publishing editor for 20 years with Waterst ...
View agent
Gordon Wise
Gordon Wise began working in publishing as a bookseller. He has worked ...
View agent
Lizzy Kremer
Lizzy Kremer joined David Higham as a book agent in 2004 from Ed Victo ...
View agent
Jennifer Christie
Jennifer Christie has worked in PR (Saatchi & Saatchi PR subsidiary, T ...
View agent
Lucy Juckes
Lucy Juckes has worked in the publishing industry for over 25 years an ...
View agent
Sarah Manning
I first worked at Orion before doing a stint in script development for ...
View agent
Philippa Brewster
Prior to becoming an agent, Philippa was an Editor at publishers inclu ...
View agent
Louise Lamont
After studying English Literature and Medieval Studies at university, ...
View agent

Edit this agent