Meet our speakers: Penny Holroyde

Find out all about Penny Holroyde, who will be joining us for our BookTrust Represents training event in Bradford.

Penny Holroyde

Penny Holroyde will be running a session for illustrators about working with an agent at our Bradford event on 21 September.

Getting to know Penny

Who was your favourite author and/or illustrator when you were growing up and why?
I grew up with lots of books in the house but my go-to titles were always the Ant & Bee books by Angela Banner. I think it was because I discovered them when I was just about to crack the literacy code and they were really helpful and fun in that regard. My mum still keeps my old copies, which have my scribbles in the margins.

What advice would you give to a new author and/or illustrator that you wish you had been given?
In my role as an agent I see many people wanting to break into writing and illustrating for children. Both authors and illustrators should read and look at as many books as possible.

What has been your career high so far?
As an agent my career high has by far been starting a business with Claire Cartey.

What are you currently reading?
In children's I'm reading Evie and the Animals by Matt Haig, illustrated by Emily Gravett – what children doesn't want to be able to talk to animals! In adult, I'm reading Middle England by Jonathan Coe; he's a master world-builder and the perfect observer of the human condition.

Who or what inspires your work?
My clients' creativity.

Why are you supporting BookTrust Represents?
There are a lot of myths out there about the publishing industry and about agents and I hope to debunk some of them.

More about Penny

I have worked in children's publishing for almost 25 years. I began my career at Walker Books dealing in foreign rights and then relocated to Boston, Massachusetts as Rights Director at Candlewick Press for six years before returning home to become an agent specialising in children's books with the Caroline Sheldon Literary Agency. After 10 years there, in 2015 I founded Holroyde Cartey with Claire Cartey, former art director in children's books at Hachette.

Join us in Bradford on 21 September

BookTrust Represents

Our project promotes and supports children’s authors and illustrators of colour, so young readers find the books that represent them.

Learn more about BookTrust Represents