Federica Martin Leonardis has announced she is leaving the agency world to concentrate on being a mother and tackle new projects.
A former contracts executive for Orion, she started Martin Leonardis Literary Management four years ago after leaving Rogers, Coleridge & White.
The agency had a focus on commercial fiction, cookery and positive thinking/lifestyle, with a roster of authors including Thom Eagle, Caroline Kenyon and Oliver Rowe. It will remain open this year to ease the transition for her authors but is now closed to submissions.
In a post on her website, Leonardis, who gave birth in July, revealed she had made the "painful" decision to leave agenting so she could prioritise motherhood and pursue other projects.
She added: "Another part of the equation is what I believe an agent should be or do for his or her authors. I’ve been extraordinary lucky and privileged to work with talented authors, who deserve the best an agent can give them. I believe they deserve my dedication and my passion and yes, they deserve an agent who enjoys what she does and whose attention isn’t often somewhere else."
Leonardis told The Bookseller: "I became a mother in July. The birth was really dramatic and scary which definitely gave me food for thought and forced me to re-evaluate my priorities."
She said highlights from the past four years had included Thom Eagle winning the Fortnum & Mason Food & Drink Award for Début Food Book in 2019 with First, Catch (Quadrille).
"I will continue freelancing as a proofreader and copyeditor and I will announce a new project in due course," Leonardis added.
She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org