Publishers’ Rights Corner: A Place for Frankfurt’s New Deal

Publishers’ rights managers are booking tables in a new ‘Publishers’ Rights Corner,’ adjacent to the sold-out LitAg at Frankfurt Book Fair — for saner meetings on #FBM16 Tuesday.
In the Literary Agents and Scouts Center (LitAg) at Frankfurt Book Fair. Image: FBM – Peter Hirth
In the Literary Agents and Scouts Center (LitAg) at Frankfurt Book Fair. Image: FBM – Peter Hirth

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

‘Total Chaos’ No More: Escape From the Hofs

[dropcap]E[/dropcap]verybody loves the Frankfurter Hof. What’s not to like? Among Frankfurt Book Fair veterans, the grand hotel is an essential landmark and watering hole. But when it comes to coherent, productive publishing-rights meetings, the Hof not is a great hotel.

As a South American agent puts it, “We hate meetings at the Frankfurter Hof, it’s total chaos. [It’s] way better to meet at the Agents’ Center on Tuesday.” Fun? Sure. Productive? Not so much.

“This last year was impossible at the Hof,” one US agent tells us.

So, while most of us are London-bound at the moment, publishing house rights directors are busy securing their spots in a new arrangement for Frankfurt.

‘Like Being on a Subway at Rush Hour’

This year, Buchmesse administrators are doing two new things to help facilitate the booming rights action of the Literary Agents and Scouts Center (LitAg) at the Fair, which already has sold out all 460 of its tables, more than six months in advance of the year’s largest trade show.

  • First, #FBM16 as the Fair is hashtagged, is opening the LitAg in Hall 6.3 a day early — on the Tuesday, October 18, before the official Wednesday opening of Book Fair.
  • Second, the Fair is installing a new, comfortable, well-equipped space, Publishers’ Rights Corner, so that publishing houses’ rights personnel have a workspace of their own. The Corner will be open on that Tuesday, the 18th, immediately adjacent to the LitAg. And editors will be given free access to the Fair grounds that day so that they can take care of business, and conduct their meetings with the agents and scouts in the LitAg in a quieter, saner environment.

Our colleague Riky Stock at German Book Office New York tells us that some 60 agencies already have committed to hold their Tuesday meetings at Building 6.3, and that list is growing fast.

Publishers or rights managers who are registered with a stand at Frankfurt can book an additional table with four chairs in the Rights Corner on Tuesday the 18th. They’ll get free wi-fi, coffee, snacks, and an invitation to that evening’s rights drinks reception in the LitAg, as well.

Rights directors interested in a spot in the Publishers’ Rights Corner can use the email address to make inquiries and reserve.

Barbara Zitwer: ‘Crazy for Meetings and Business’

And meanwhile, States-based agent Barbara Zitwer has a keen explanation of why it’s time to haul the meetings out of the Hof(s). Zitwer tells us:

Barbara Zitwer
Barbara Zitwer

“We are trying to move the action from the Frankfurter Hof over to the Fair because many of us feel the Frankfurter [Hof] scene is crazy for meetings and business.

“Sure, it’s a rock-‘n’-roll fun scene.

“But in reality it’s so jam-packed, noisy and such a small space that many people can’t find people that they’re supposed to meet, you can’t hear anyone talk unless you shout, and it’s like being on the subway at rush hour before New Year’s Eve in New York City.“

There’s more: Read the full story at Publishing Perspectives

By Porter Ander­son

Originally published at


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