Laxfield Literary Associates was founded by Emma Shercliff in 2020.
Emma has over 20 years of experience in the publishing industry. She has worked for publishing houses in Paris, Melbourne, Abuja and London, and for the British Council in Nigeria and Iran. Emma was formerly M.D. of Macmillan English Campus, and Head of Export Sales at Hodder Education. She was Sales & Rights Director of Cassava Republic Press UK, an award-winning independent African publishing company, until 2019. Emma was Publishing Director for Ankara Press, an African romance imprint launched in 2014, and conceived and coordinated the acclaimed Valentine’s Day Anthology (2015), which featured contributions in multiple languages from authors and translators across Africa.
Emma sits on Advisory Boards for the Centre for Book Cultures and Publishing, University of Reading and the MA Publishing, University of Exeter. Emma has written for industry publications including The Bookseller, Publishing Perspectives, Wasafiri and LOGOS, and contributed a book chapter on Black British Publishing to The Edinburgh Companion to Women in Publishing (forthcoming 2024).
Publishing consultancy work includes a review of the publishing sector in Ukraine for the British Council (2020-2021), and the development of an author diversity report & toolkit for the UK Publishers Association (2021). Emma has spoken on industry panels and at publishing conferences including the Salon du Livre in Geneva, the London Book Fair, the Emirates Literary Festival and the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair. She regularly chairs literary events, including at the Primadonna Festival and the National Centre for Writing, and programmes the Low House Litfest.
Emma lives in Suffolk.
“I was spurred to establish Laxfield Literary Associates in part by a report published in April 2020, which called for more literary agents to move outside of London in order to make the route to publication more accessible and representative. The Common People report also included testimonials from authors whose experience of agents was a negative one, and who felt that the agenting process was closed to them, unnecessarily secretive and difficult to navigate. I wished to establish my own agency to build on the spirit of collaboration and openness which represents the best of the publishing industry and, above all, to provide each author with the bespoke support they need.”
WHAT WE DO:
We provide representation for authors in Norfolk and Suffolk, and writers from under-represented backgrounds. We are particularly interested in working with authors based in Africa & the Caribbean, the Middle East, Afghanistan and Ukraine. We provide a complete agency service, with a focus on author care, dialogue and transparency.
We are proud to represent a wide range of exceptional talent, from debut authors to established writers. Awards won by our clients include the Caine Prize for African Writing, the Whiting Award for Fiction, the Sundance Film Festival Audience Award and the Pulitzer Prize.
RIGHTS & PERMISSIONS:
- Isobel Dixon, MD, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency
- Chris Gribble, Chief Executive, National Centre for Writing
- Abubakar Adam Ibrahim
- Sarah Ladipo Manyika
- Gaby Wood