Andrew Nurnberg Associates (ANA) International is creating an annual bursary in honour of agent Anna Droumeva, who died last month aged 77.
The bursary, supported by both ANA International and ANA Sofia, will provide an opportunity for its recipient to "make meaningful, professional connections somewhere other than home". The agency said more details will be announced in due course.
Paying tribute to Droumeva, Andrew Nurnberg described her as a "true force of nature" and "pioneer" who "single-handedly, educated and championed a host of young Serbian, Bulgarian and Romanian publishers in the mores of international publishing".
Droumeva was fluent in English and had studied English Philology at Sofia University. She worked in the Union of Bulgarian Authors before moving to Germany, first in Berlin and then in Bonn, before a few years working in New York until she returned to Sofia in 1991.
Nurnberg said: "Being at her side as she built the agency in Sofia was as much fun as it was a privilege, and I am sure that I learnt more from her than she learnt from me: from Belgrade to Bucharest, meeting with editors late at night in not-so-salubrious bars were an eye-opener. Slowly but surely, she extended our representation from her beloved Serbia into the surrounding markets of Albania, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Kosovo and Bosnia. The monies earned from these markets were, and remain, modest however she devoted as much attention to these deals as larger ones from Romania or those back in her native Bulgaria, bringing joy to many an author on finding these exotic editions on their door mat of a morning.
"Ever prescient, she expanded the agency, ANA Sofia, where her daughter, Mira Droumeva, has now been co-director for many years: the smoothest of transitions for both the local publishers as for our international clients who she had represented so brilliantly over many years. We will miss Anna terribly, but we are blessed by the warmth and determination that characterised her life and career."