Walker Books has acquired the debut teen novel by comedian and screenwriter Nat Luurtsema.
Goldfish is a comedy about Lou Brown, a swimmer who fails an Olympic time-trial and decides to give up the sport completely. She tries to find her new ‘thing’ and enters a world of underwater somersaults, crazy talent show auditions, bitchy girls and awkward boy chat.
Following a five-way auction, commissioning editor Emma Lidbury negotiated a two-book deal for world English language rights from Hellie Ogden at Janklow & Nesbit. The agency has also sold the rights to Goldfish in Germany, Italy and France.
Lidbury said: “It’s rare to find a genuinely hilarious voice, and Nat’s tone is spot on. I also fell in love with her characters, especially her hapless six-foot heroine, who doesn’t take herself too seriously and has a wisecrack for every occasion. Goldfish delivers a positive message about image and self-belief within the context of comedy, and the TV talent show storyline is silliness in its best form.”
Publication is set for 2016.
Luurtsema is a third of sketch group Jigsaw and her short film Island Queen was nominated for a BAFTA in 2014. She has also written the non-fiction book Cuckoo in the Nest (Hodder).