Tomaszewska steps up as Virago editorial director

Tomaszewska steps up as Virago editorial director

Virago’s Rose Tomaszewska has been promoted to editorial director, two years after joining the company.  

Tomaszewska joined Virago as senior commissioning editor to cover Sarah Savitt’s parental leave in June 2019, and became a permanent member of the editorial team in February 2020.  

While covering Savitt’s parental leave, she published a second edition of The Guilty Feminist paperback and acquired Hag, featuring stories by Daisy Johnson, Liv Little, Eimear McBride and Irenosen Okojie, among others; she also published Bess Kalb’s Nobody Will Tell You This But Me, which was shortlisted for the Wingate Prize. 

“Tomaszewska has made many stellar acquisitions since joining Virago, most notably winning an eight-way auction for Leah Hazard’s Womb as well as a five-way auction for Sharma Taylor’s debut novel What a Mother’s Love Don’t Teach You as the underbidder,” Virago said. “She also won a six-way auction for an account of the first female astronauts at Nasa, The Six by Loren Grush; a groundbreaking book about how racism kills, Weathering by Dr Arline Geronimus; Undressing Women, a century’s history on fashion and beauty by acclaimed historian Virginia Nicholson; along with a pre-empt for Easy Beauty by Chloe Cooper Jones.” 

Tomaszewska is also the editorial lead for Virago podcast “Ourshelves”, as well as hosting Virago Speakeasy events at Pages of Chesire Street in East London. She has taught at Arvon, Faber Academy and the University of Edinburgh and is based in Brighton. She has spent 10 years in publishing overall and helped to set up riverrun, the literary imprint of Quercus. 

“When I first came to Virago, everyone who knew me in the industry seemed to grin and say, ‘Yes, that’ll suit you’,” Tomaszewska said. “Two years—most of which has been quite weird, and working from home—later, I hope I’ve not disappointed them. I’m still waiting to see many of the amazing books I’ve been lucky enough to acquire come out, and cheer on the authors whose beautiful writing has brought so much light into my lockdown. I’m proud of them, and so grateful to Sarah and the whole team who have given me their belief, their infectious enthusiasm for my projects, and their guidance—they make Virago a true home.” 

Savitt said: “I knew as soon as I met Rose, while interviewing for my parental leave cover, that she would bring so much to Virago, and I am thrilled we were able to hire her permanently—and now give her a very well-deserved promotion. Her intelligence, unflagging energy and devotion to Virago are notable and she has made a huge difference to the whole team.”