Elizabeth in a London Bookshop

About the Agency

Founded in 1990, Wales Literary Agency (originally Levant & Wales) represents more than 60 clients and several independent presses. Seattle-based, the agency has come to be regarded as a competitive boutique agency with a quality list.

Client titles have appeared on the New York Times bestseller lists, Publishers Weekly, and other national bestseller lists; earned strong reviews; and attracted a long list of awards and grants, some of which are listed below.

“... discerning Seattle outfit in search of literary nonfiction and fiction from the Pacific Rim and beyond.”



Elizabeth Wales, owner and principal agent, began her career in publishing at Oxford University Press in 1980. She also worked at the Strand Bookstore and in trade sales and marketing at Viking Penguin in New York. A graduate of Smith College, she did graduate work in Literature at Columbia University. Member of Association of Author’s Representatives, Inc. (AAR) and the Authors' Guild.

Neal Swain, assistant agent, graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in History. She handles foreign rights.

In memoriam: Dan Levant, a founding partner of the agency, died on April 9, 2012. He provided critical support during the agency’s early years.

Recently published titles represented by the Wales Agency include: Dan Savage's American Savage: Insights, Slights, and Fights on Faith, Sex, Love and Politics; Growing a Feast by Kurt Timmermeister; Indie pick Badluck Way, a memoir by Bryce Andrews; poet and MacArthur Fellowship award winner Lucia Perillo's short story collection, Happiness is a Chemical in the Brain; Leela Corman's graphic novel, Unterzakhn, an LA Times Book Award Finalist and Eisner Award Finalist; and geomorphologist and MacArthur Fellow winner David Montgomery's The Rocks Don't Lie: A Geologist Investigates Noah's Flood.

Client awards include: American Book Awards, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Literary Award, the Anisfeld-Wolf Book Award, the AWP Award, Guggenheim Awards, the Harvard Goldsmith Award, a Julia Child Literary Food Writing Award, Lambda Literary Awards, Lannan Awards,  a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Library of Congress, MacArthur Fellowships, NEA Fellowships, PEN Awards, the Polk Award, Pulitzer Prize finalists, Pushcart Prizes, Rockefeller Grants, and Washington State Book Awards.

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