RAYA is a Lebanon and France based literary agency, specialized in the representation of world translation rights of Arabic works.
I created RAYA agency for Arabic literature in 2004 because I felt that Arabic literature was under-represented. Publishers have an interest in this literature, but no straightforward access to it, and not enough information. Agenting seemed like an efficient way to bring some interesting titles forward.
Of course ‘interesting’ is a personal matter.
I look for books that have something to say. They either tell an amazing story, feature a beautiful voice, cover a historical event that deserves to be known. Anything that moves me in the right way interests me.
I am not interested in books that feel like a successful recipe is being used again and again. I am not interested in books that appeal to a certain kind of exoticism. I am not interested in clichés, and in easy emotions.
What I look for is guts: Something that is intimate to the author and echoes deep into the reader; something that is brave and audacious.
Some useful information
My list is represented by several co-agents on different territories. Check the ‘co-agents‘ tab.
RAYA authors have been placed in houses like:
Sindbad, Actes Sud (France)
Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation (UK, Qatar)