Gates Gets ‘Elemental’ for S&S

At Simon & Schuster, Trish Todd bought world rights, at auction, to Erin Gates’s Elements of (Life)Style. The title marks the debut of Gates, a Boston-based interior decorator and stylist who started a blog ( in 2007. S&S described Gates as a “design expert” for brands and endeavors like O, The Oprah Magazine and Ikea’s Life Improvement Project. The book, which is scheduled for 2014, will be illustrated and, as S&S put it, “incorporate the honest and witty style and voice” of the blog. Gates was represented by Kathryn Beaumont at Kneerim, Williams & Bloom.

McQueen Sells ‘Jewel’ to Sourcebooks

British author Alison McQueen sold U.S. rights to her sophomore novel, Under a Jeweled Sky, to Shana Drehs at Sourcebooks. McQueen’s debut, The Secret Children, was published by Orion in January 2012. This book, said agent Grainne Fox of Fletcher & Co., who represents McQueen, will be in the vein of Paul Scott’s 1966 novel, The Jewel in the Crown. (That book, the first in a series, served as the basis for a later U.K. TV miniseries, and follows a collection of characters in a fictional city in British-controlled India during the 1940s.) Jeweled Sky is about a Delhi-born English woman who, in 1957, returns to her native metropolis with her new husband. Orion is publishing the novel in the U.K. in April.

B’Bury ‘Dopes’ With Quinones

Pete Beatty at Bloomsbury nabbed world rights to L.A. Times reporter Sam Quinones’s Doped Up, in a sale coordinated by FinePrint’s Stephany Evans. The book, which is scheduled for winter 2015, explores the the collision of drug lords and pharmaceutical CEOS. Elaborating, the house said the book examines how two different marketing messages—one created by a pharmaceutical company and the other by heroin dealers—came together to “create an opiate epidemic” in America.

HC Kids Invests in Middle Grade Debut

In a four-book pre-empt, Rosemary Brosnan and Karen Chaplin at HarperCollins Children’s Books took world English rights to a debut middle grade fantasy series, called The Winged Herds, by stay-at-home mother Jennifer Lynn Alvarez. Jacqueline Flynn at Joelle Delbourgo Associates brokered the sale, and the first book, The Winged Herds of Anok, is tentatively slated for fall 2014. The work, Delbourgo said, has drawn comparisons to Erin Hunter’s Warriors series; Alvarez’s story follows five herds of winged battle horses, called pegasi. Chaplin will be editing the series.

Tor Nabs Doyle Series

Author Tom Doyle sold world English rights to a new military series to Claire Eddy at Tor/Forge. Bob Thixton at the Pinder Lane & Garon-Brooke Agency brokered the deal with Eddy, closing the sale at auction. The first book, American Craftsman, Thixton said, features “ancient American magic and 21st century espionage.” Doyle’s short story collection, The Wizard of Macatawa and Other Stories, was published by indie Paper Golem Press in December.

Page to Screen

Sean Daily at Hotchkiss and Associates sold dramatic rights to Sara Lunsford’s memoir Sweet Hell on Fire to CBS Television Studios. Frank Marshall’s production company, The Kennedy/Marshall Company, (Lincoln) is attached. The subtitle of the book (which Sourcebooks published in paperback in November) is “A Memoir of the Prison I Worked In and the Prison I Lived In”; it chronicles the author’s experience as a corrections officer at a maximum security prison for men. (In its review, PW called the book “gritty” and “raw.”) Lunsford writes fiction under the pen name Saranna DeWylde, and Sweet Hell marked her first work of nonfiction. Daily did the deal on behalf of Deidre Knight of the Knight Agency.


Renee Sedliar at Da Capo bought world rights to Johanna Stein’s Mother-Eff’ed: Lessons in Parenting from a Highly Questionable Source. Doug Abrams at Idea Architects represented Stein, who is a comedian and TV writer. Da Capo said the book is a collection of “way-too-candid” tales of child rearing.