Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Former Toro editor Finkle plans literary agency for freelance writers

Derek Finkle, the former editor of Toro magazine, is hoping to launch a new literary agency to represent freelance writers, starting in January . While the official launch will be sometime in October, he is holding two, off-the-record preview meetings in Toronto for interested writers. In an e-mail message distributed today, Finkle said:
Ultimately, I think this agency can be of great benefit to Canada's freelance writers and the publications they work for. Writers will be marketed in a way that will make them much easier to find for editors from coast to coast. Both sides stand only to gain from the overall injection of added professionalism to our profession.

Many of the writers I have worked with over the course of my career, as an editor at both Saturday Night and Toro, have already committed to the agency (they will be named in the email to come in early October). For the agency to succeed, however, it will require a definitive critical mass. If enough writers sign on this fall, the agency will open for business at the beginning of 2009.
The two Toronto meetings are on Tuesday, September 9 from 3 to 4 p.m. and on Monday, September 15 from 10 to 11 a.m. Both will be held at VERITY, a private club at 111 Queen Street East, between Church and Jarvis.Further information: 416-504-1200 ext 226 or Derek(dot)Finkle(at)sympatico(dot)ca.
I will be joined [says Finkle] at the meetings by media lawyer Iain MacKinnon, who has agreed to be retained by the agency, particularly in order to represent its clients when it comes to the negotiation of rights - electronic, exclusivity, copyright, and so forth - where freelancers have been giving much away for many years now.
Of course this is an entirely different direction from that being pursued by the fledgling Canadian Freelance Union which, for going on three years, has been struggling to get enough freelancers to sign up and make the union a reality.

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