Published On: Mon, Jun 22nd, 2020

Authors leave JK Rowling’s literary agency over her comments about trans people | Ents & Arts News

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Four authors have quit JK Rowling’s literary agency, saying that the company refused to publish a statement in support of rights for transgender people.

Three of the writers, Fox Fisher, Ugla Stefania Kristjonudottir Jonsdottir and Drew Davies released a statement together, saying they were leaving The Blair Partnership.

Another author also left the company but did not sign the statement.

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According to the statement, the trio, which includes members of the LGBT+ community, asked the agency to “reaffirm their stance to transgender rights and equality”, but said that after a number of private talks, they had been “unable to commit to any action that we thought was appropriate and meaningful”.

They said it was important that they were represented by an agency that “supports our rights at all avenues, and does not endorse views that go against our values and principles”.

A spokeswoman for The Blair Partnership, which says “Progressive is our watchword” on its home page, said it championed “equality and inclusivity” but had refused to “meet their demands to be re-educated to their point of view”.

They said: “We support the rights of all of our clients to express their thoughts and beliefs, and we believe in freedom of speech.

“Publishing and the creative arts are dependent on these things. It is our duty, as an agency, to support all of our clients in this fundamental freedom and we do not comment on their individual views.

“We are disappointed by the decision that four clients have taken to part ways with the agency. To reiterate, we believe in freedom of speech for all; these clients have decided to leave because we did not meet their demands to be re-educated to their point of view.

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“We respect their right to pursue what they feel is the correct course of action.

“We value all our authors’ voices and, as an agency, champion equality and inclusivity. We remain committed to making the agency the most welcoming environment it can be for everyone.

“The diversity of our clients’ voices is our strength and we take enormous pride from each and every one.”

The agency was set up in 2011, and touted Ms Rowling as its main client. It represents around 80 authors, including Olympic gold medallist Sir Chris Hoy and world champion boxer, Tyson Fury.

Harry Potter actress Evanna Lynch, who played Luna Lovegood in the films, is also a client at the agency.

JK Rowling (L) and Emma Watson attend the Lumos fundraising event hosted by JK Rowling at The Warner Bros. Harry Potter Tour on November 9, 2013 in London, England
Emma Watson (R) has already distanced herself from Rowling’s (L) comments

JK Rowling, who penned the world-famous Harry Potter books, has come under heavy criticism following her comments on transgender issues. Writing in a recent, lengthy essay she said she wanted to address the subject due to what she believes is an increasingly sexist society.

Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, who played the main characters in the film adaptations of the books, have all affirmed their support to the transgender community, following Rowling’s comments.

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