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Literary Estates

Emma has worked closely with literary estates for over a decade, advising and offering support around the day-to-day management of the works of high-profile authors, as well bigger-picture thinking and longer-term strategy across all parts of the business for well-established estates or those looking to bring works back into the spotlight. She is an expert in the field, across both poetry and prose, having supported and advised estates of authors such as T.S. Eliot, Seamus Heaney, William Golding, Ted Hughes, Sylvia Plath, Philip Larkin and Stevie Smith. She understands that every estate is unique, with individual aims, considerations and responsibilities whilst working alongside an author’s final wishes. 

She has loved working with families, boards, and trustees to honour an author's writing and legacy, and to give it the best possible chance to reach long-term readers as well as new audiences. 

With this in mind, Highbury Literary offers two services specific to literary estates – the first a one-off or annual review of your titles and business; the second a bespoke programme tailored to meet the exact needs of new or established estates.  

In both instances, Emma is happy to offer an initial free 45-minute phone or video call consultation to ensure we can offer you exactly what you’re looking for. 


We are able to adapt our services to your individual needs so please be in touch with us at if none of these options fit what you’re looking for and we’d be happy to discuss with you in more detail. 

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 Audit and Business Plan

Full Audit and Business Plan: a full audit of all existing and expired UK and international licences (including subsidiary rights), as well as an outline of questions to have in the back of your mind when speaking to agents or publishers; details to keep track of and things to keep in mind in the short-term and long-term; and targets for individual titles as well as the entire portfolio.  

What we need from you: copies of all paperwork you’d like to be reviewed, and a sense of any specific priorities or aims for the estate at this stage. All details will remain confidential.

What we will provide: a full audit spreadsheet, three to four pages of accompanying written notes and a ninety minute long video-call / in person meeting to go through any questions after you have received the material. 

A one-off fee starting at £750 dependent on the number of titles / size of the portfolio you are looking to review.

This can be a one-off service, but Emma also offers an annual review for any follow-up audits at a fee of £375 per annum and you can opt into this at any stage. If you would like to review this more regularly (for example, quarterly or bi-annually), we’d be very happy to discuss in more detail, and please do drop us a note below.

Bespoke Mentoring

Bespoke Mentoring: Emma will be available to act as an impartial consultant to answer any questions you may have about the publishing process; from subsidiary rights (such as Permissions, Performance or Translation), through to contracts and negotiation, trade marks, unpublished material and copyright infringement. Please note that Emma is not a lawyer.

A one-off fee of £125 for each one hour session when booked individually.

Alternatively, we also offer the option to purchase bundles of sessions at discounted rates: two sessions at £110 per session, four sessions at £100 per session, six sessions at £90 per session. For a number of sessions over and above this, Emma is happy to offer £80 per session. 

These sessions can happen either over video call or in-person. 

Emma's expertise in handling literary estates, and her market insights, gave us the confidence to approach a top agent for our father's work, resulting in it being accepted for representation. Emma is thoughtful, down to earth, easy to work with, and immensely knowledgeable.


Janet Laugharne and Rebecca Hughes, daughters of Cledwyn Hughes (1920-78), Anglo-Welsh Author

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