Literary agent Bill Clegg has been the talk of the town since last week, when Radaronline.com reported that Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, his boss at the William Morris Agency, had gone out with a proposal for a memoir he intends to write about his descent into and recovery from crack addiction.
Today, Pat Strachan of Little, Brown acquired the rights to Mr. Clegg’s book, which is tentatively called Portrait of an Addict as a Young Man. Ms. Walsh confirmed that Ms. Strachan had made the acquisition but declined to comment further. Mr. Clegg did not respond to an e-mail.
Mr. Clegg was the subject of much concern and speculation within the publishing industry in 2005, when he abrupty stopped coming into work at the agency he ran at the time with Sarah Burnes, and left his clients—Nicole Krauss, Susan Choi, and Andrew Sean Greer among them—without representation. He resurfaced in 2006 as an agent at William Morris, where he has been ever since. It is widely understood that he was in recovery during the time he spent away from work.
UPDATE: A source says Ms. Walsh got Mr. Clegg a $350,000 advance for North American rights. According to an announcement, the book will be published in 2010.
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