Picador has acquired international rights to Sweet Home, the debut collection of short stories from Belfast-based writer Wendy Erskine, first published in Ireland and Northern Ireland by Stinging Fly.
Editor Ansa Khan Khattak bought world English language rights, including audio, but excluding the island of Ireland, where rights are retained by Stinging Fly. The deal was done through Lucy Luck at C+W.
Sweet Home follows the lives of people in Erskine’s home town, "capturing the intensity of the drama and tragedy that coexist in ordinary lives", Picador said. Each of Erskine’s stories is said to lay bare the "desire, intrigue and sadness at the heart of her characters’ East Belfast lives". A rock star ends his days on the street where he was born; a husband and wife become entangled with another, younger couple; Jean, neglected by her own self-absorbed son, is fixated on the lives of her neighbours. "Deeply compassionate, fully fleshed-out stories showing the peculiarity of every day emotion, Sweet Home succeeds in unveiling the depth of normal lives and the feelings that drive them," said the publisher.
Khattak commented: "Wendy Erskine’s writing is some of the best I’ve read during my time here at Picador. The stories in Sweet Home are beautiful snapshots into domestic lives and I’m so excited about bringing her work to more readers."
The collection will be published in the UK and internationally in June 2019.