David Ebershoff, who has distinguished himself as both an editor of literary bestsellers and an author of them, is leaving his job as editor to focus on his writing career. Ebershoff isn't entirely severing ties with his employer, though; he will continue to be published by Random House, and Kate Medina, his standing editor, is working on his forthcoming novel, The Prodigies.
In an announcement about Ebershoff's departure, Susan Kamil, publisher and editor-in-chief of Random House, said he "has brilliantly mastered two Random House careers simultaneously" but will officially leave his role as v-p and executive editor at the imprint next month.
Ebershoff, who started at Random House 20 years ago as an intern, rose up through the company, becoming publishing director of Modern Library before joining little Random. As an editor, he's worked on such commercial and critical hits as Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell, Super Sad True Love Story by Gary Shteyngart and Open City by Teju Cole. Ebershoff is also known, in publishing circles, for becoming the first editor to have two of his authors win a Pulitzer Prize in the same year. (In 2013, Ebershoff's author Adam Johnson took home the fiction prize for The Orphan Master’s Son while Fredrik Logevall won the prize for history for Embers of War.)
As an author, Ebershoff has also found success. He has published three novels--The 19th Wife (2008), Pasadena (2002) and The Danish Girl (2000)--as well as the short story collection The Rose City (2001). As Kamil noted in her announcement, The Danish Girl has been adapted into a 2015 film starring Eddie Redmayne that is generating Oscar buzz, while The 19th Wife was a bestseller in the U.S. as well as in the U.K. and was adapted into a television movie.