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About Us

Irene Goodman of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Irene Goodman has been a leading member of the publishing community for over 25 years. Her clients are regulars on the New York Times, USA Today, Publishers Weekly, and Bookscan bestseller lists. She began her career as the assistant to the agent who represented Stephen King, and established her own agency a year later. Her fiction list includes upmarket womenís fiction, middle grade, young adult, thrillers, historical fiction, and mysteries. Her non-fiction list includes pop culture, science, Francophilia, and lifestyle. Together with her dynamic staff, her agency represents over one hundred fifty authors in these fields.

Irene is the creator of the "power summit meeting", a highly effective day in which all the key people in the authorís professional life get together in one room to focus on the authorís career. This technique enhances and accelerates the authorís growth beyond the sum of its parts. It allows everyone to invest in the authorís vision, and functions like a shot of adrenaline to the team.

Irene has written columns and articles for a number of writersí publications, including the Novelists Ink newsletter, the Mystery Writers of America newsletter, Solander (the newsletter of the Historical Novelists Society), the Romance Writers of America newsletter, and many regional publications. She is also a frequent speaker at writerís conferences, including keynoting at the Historical Novelists Society and Novelists Ink., and workshops at the Romance Writers of America, the Surrey International Writers Conference, the Pacific Northwest Writers Conference, SEAK, the South Carolina Writers Workshop, and Malice Domestic.

Originally from the Midwest, Irene has a B.A. and a masterís degree from the University of Michigan. She and her husband divide their time between New York and the Berkshires, and have two grown children. Her personal passions include travel, Doonesbury, opera, Mark Twain, theatre, and children.

Beth Vesel of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Beth Vesel began her publishing career at the Watkins Loomis Agency in New York in 1985, working under principal agent Gloria Loomis, after which she joined Sanford J. Greenburger Associates as a senior agent for the next fourteen years. She then founded The Beth Vesel Literary Agency in 2003. Beth is known for her work with academics, psychiatrists, psychologists and other professionals in helping them transition to authors of landmark books.

Her areas of specialty include narrative non-fiction, cultural criticism, psychology, science and memoir. Best sellers include Your Money or Your Life by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez, I Don't Want to Talk About It by Terrence Real, Finding Your Own North Star by Martha Beck, Inside the Mind of Scott Peterson by Keith Ablow, Against Love by Laura Kipnis, and Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline.

Beth has a B.A. from UC Berkeley in English and Political Science where she also completed graduate work in comparative literature. Beth is a poet and studies in modern dance and Pilates.

Miriam Kriss of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Miriam Kriss joined the Irene Goodman Literary Agency just as she was finishing her master's degree in Fine Arts at New York University in early 2004, and quickly became one of the hottest young agents in town. Going from Michelangelo to Nora Roberts was not as great a leap as it might seem, as Miriam had been obsessively reading commercial fiction since she found a copy of Judith McNaught's classic Whitney, My Love in a rented lakeside cabin when she was thirteen. A few pages in, not only were some gaps in her Catholic school education filled, but she was hooked. She reads fast: one hundred pages an hour, a novel a day, and well, that adds up to a lot of books a year. Miriam likes to say Irene knows the market because she's been doing this for over twenty-five years and is savvy as all get out, but Miriam herself knows the market because she is the market. And that knowledge has paid off for both her and her clients in a big way.

Miriam's focus remains on commercial fiction and she represents everything from hardcover historical mysteries to all subgenres of romance, from young adult fiction to kick ass urban fantasies, and everything in between. If it's fun to read, she probably represents it. She doesn't look for specific stories, focusing instead on finding a voice she can fall in love with and champion. This strategy of taking on only clients she's passionate about has led to six-figure deals for first-time authors and numerous clients appearances on the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists. During one memorable week, she had two authors appear on the Times list at the same time.

Barbara Poelle of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Barbara Poelle began her publishing career as a freelance copywriter and editor before joining the Goodman Agency in 2007, but feels as if she truly prepared for the industry during her brief stint as a stand-up comic in Los Angeles. She has found success placing thrillers, literary suspense, historical romances, humorous/platform driven non-fiction, and upmarket fiction and is actively seeking her next great client in those genres, but is passionate about anything with a unique voice. Barbara has a very hands on approach with the craft and editorial details of the books she represents, and loves working with her clients to take their writing to the next level.

Rachel Ekstrom of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Rachel Ekstromís decade of experience working in the publicity departments at St. Martinís Press, Minotaur Books, and Penguinís Dutton and Gotham imprints has given her an insiderís view of the publishing industry. With a knack for book promotion, sheís honed her skills building the careers of debut authors and #1 New York Times bestsellers. Rachel is passionate about a variety of genres, including young adult, womenís fiction, new adult, mysteries, thrillers, romance, and the occasional quirky work of nonfiction. She's looking for books that will make her heart beat faster than it does when she's biking through Manhattan traffic.

Danny Baror of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Danny Baror is president of Baror International, Inc., an independent literary agency primarily engaged in the sale of British and translation rights for other agencies. Danny handles these rights for our books. Known as the "King of Foreign Rights", Danny is a tireless pursuer of foreign markets. As a result, our books appear in foreign languages all over the world.

One of the things that makes him different is that he rarely uses subagents. Instead, he deals directly with publishers in each country. This means that he is the sole guardian of each author's foreign presence, instead of a multitude of subagents in a wide variety of places.

Born and raised in Israel, Danny has lived in New York for more than 25 years. His work ethic, aggressiveness, and won't-take-no-for-an-answer attitude is unheard of among the old-guard foreign agents. He gets our books into the hands of foreign editors; follows up these submissions tenaciously; creates buzz and excitement for our clients in each territory; then negotiates with a fervor that has never been seen before in the traditionally restrained world of foreign rights.

Heather Baror of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

After attending Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, Heather Baror entered the magazine world, first working at Conde Nast Publications and then transitioning over to Hearst Magazines. A few years later, she joined Baror International as a literary agent having been drawn to the more literary aspects of book publishing.

With her editorial background in magazines, Heather combines her writing experience and agenting skills, creating a unique package that allows her to understand the literary work in the most beneficial commercial sense - working to procure the best possible arrangement for the authors and publishers alike.

At Baror International, Heather sells foreign rights, focusing on young adult titles as well as adult literary and fiction works.

Steve Fisher of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency, New York City

Steven Fisher began his career in television journalism in New York. He worked as the Head of the Research Department at World News Tonight with Peter Jennings for several years. He also produced and wrote anchor copy for CNN.

Moving to Los Angeles, Steve worked at ICM, Innovative Artists, and H.N. Swanson before that firm was acquired by The Renaissance Agency. He represents screenwriters, television writers, and novelists in the film and TV arena. His client list includes Dorothy Allison (National Book Award nominee for Bastard Out of Carolina); Alison Bechdel (author of the acclaimed graphic memoir Fun Home); Robert Stone (National book Award winner); estate of Arthur C. Clarke; Patrick OíBrian (Master and Commander series); Lee Child (Jack Reacher franchise currently at Paramount with Cruise/Wagner); Jim Sallis (author of Drive at Universal with Hugh Jackman attached to star and Marc Platt to produce); bestselling suspense author John Saul; Young adult author Garth Nix, John Connelly, and Pulitzer Prize winners Phil Caputo (Rumor of War) and Burrows & Wallace.

He is currently with Agency for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles.