Visiting International Publishers (VIPs) 2023

Meet the VIPs!

We are delighted to announce the 14 international publishers, editors, and literary agents participating in the 22nd year of the Visiting International Publishers (VIPs) program. The program will return as an in-person program in 2023 and will be held alongside the Sydney Writers’ Festival from 22–26 May.

The Australia Council also continues its valuable partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) for the fifth year.   

  • Federico Andornino, Executive Publisher – Sceptre Books, UK
  • Jon Baker, President – Baker Literary Scouting, US
  • Erica Berla, Co-Founder & Literary Agent – Berla & Griffini Rights Agency, ITALY
  • Peter Borland, Vice President, Editor in Chief – Atria Books/Washington Square Press, Simon & Schuster, US
  • David Forrer, Literary Agent – Inkwell Management, US
  • David Gressot, Editor – Editions Actes Sud, FRANCE
  • Simona Herzig, Head of Children’s Books – Loewe Verlag, GERMANY
  • Liwen Lin, Senior Editor – Locus Publishing, TAIWAN
  • Simon Lörsch, Acquisitions Editor – Suhrkamp Verlag, GERMANY
  • Jody Mosley, Vice President, Associate Publisher – Abrams Children’s and Abrams ComicArts, US
  • Michael Reynolds, Editor in Chief – Europa Editions, US
  • Emilia Rhodes, Editorial Director – HarperCollins Children’s Books, US
  • Friederike Schilbach, Editorial Director – Aufbau Verlage, GERMANY
  • Nick Thomas, Executive Editor – Levine Querido, USA

CLICK HERE to view the full bios and areas of interest of this year’s VIPs.

The selection of participants was made by the VIPs Committee, in collaboration with Australia Council staff. The VIPs represent a range of territories; genre specialties; boutique and multinational publishers; and English-language and translation markets.

Request your business meetings with the VIPs

To manage the high demand for one-to-one business meetings, and ensure the most targeted matches, the VIPs select the Australian publishers and agents with whom they’d like to meet.

To request a meeting with one or more of the VIPs, please complete the online form via the link below.

CLICK HERE to request a meeting.

The Australia Council will collate and submit the requests to the VIPs; the VIPs will make their selection; and the Australia Council will schedule the meetings.

Registration is open to Australian publishers or agents who publish or represent literary titles, in the areas of fiction, narrative non-fiction, poetry, or children’s books (i.e. creative writing).

Publishers primarily involved in educational or reference books and/or other non-literary titles, self-publishers, printers, and distributors, are not eligible to register for business meetings, but are invited to attend the free industry forum sessions which will be announced on this page in early April.

Registration for business meetings closes on Thursday 30 March 2023. You will be advised of the outcome of your meeting requests by mid-April.

The 2023 VIPs program is delivered in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

  • Wednesday 24 May 2023: VIPs industry forum, networking events
  • Thursday 25 May 2023: one-to-one business meetings
  • Friday 26 May 2023: one-to-one business meetings

The full program of events including times and locations will be updated on this webpage by early April.

Delivered alongside the Sydney Writers’ Festival each year, the VIPs program supports international publishers, scouts and literary agents to participate in a week-long schedule of business meetings, networking events, industry forums, writers’ festival events, and panel discussions with Australian publishers and agents. The program showcases Australia’s literary talent, and promotes the sale of rights to Australian titles in international markets.

The visiting delegation are immersed in Australia’s unique literary culture, share insights into global publishing trends, strengthen relationships with their Australian counterparts, and expand opportunities for Australian authors overseas.

Since its inception in 1998, the VIPs program has welcomed over 284 international guests to Australia, from 28 countries, with more than 300 Australian titles sold into overseas markets through the program. These titles include Fight Like a Girl by Clementine Ford, The Patchwork Bike by Maxine Beneba Clarke, Boy Swallows Universe by Trent Dalton, The Dark Lake by Sarah Bailey, Scrublands by Chris Hammer, I Love Me by Sally Morgan and Ambelin Kwaymullina, Do Not Lick This Book by Idan Ben-Barak, Jasper Jones by Craig Silvey, The Secret River by Kate Grenville, The Weather Makers by Tim Flannery, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, The Broken Shore by Peter Temple, and Picnic at Hanging Rock by Joan Lindsay.

Click here to view the VIPs alumni.

In 2017, we completed a five-year longitudinal evaluation of the VIPs program from 2011-2016, which included a survey of Australian publishers and agents. The report is available here.

The evaluation revealed that:

For every $1 we invest in the VIPs program, $5.45 is generated for the Australian literature sector – a 445% return on investment.

More than $4.1 million in rights sales was reported over the five years ($3.8 million in direct sales to VIPs who attended, and a further $300,000 in indirect sales through referrals from VIPs to other international publishers).

Participation in the VIPs program in 2016 accounted for 15% of all rights sales for Australian publishers.