The Liepman Literary Agency was founded in 1949 by Dr Ruth Liepman-Lilienstein (1909–2001) and Heinz Liepman (1905–1966), in Hamburg. Both had spent the war years in exile. Ruth Lilienstein had gone into hiding in Holland, Heinz Liepman had emigrated to the USA, where he worked as a writer and journalist and established important contacts with US publishers and authors. He later brought Norman Mailer with The Naked and the Dead, James Jones with From Here to Eternity, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Richard Wright, among others, to the agency.
While Heinz Liepman returned to writing exclusively, lawyer Ruth Liepman ran the agency by herself bringing other big names to Germany, including Arthur Miller, J.D. Salinger, Vladimir Nabokov, James Baldwin and Arthur Hailey.
The agency has been based in Zurich since 1961 and is well established in the industry. From 1981, long-time employees Eva Koralnik and Ruth Weibel ran the agency until it entered its third generation in 2013, with Marc Koralnik as the new owner.
Ruth Liepman’s beautiful memoir Maybe Luck Isn’t Just Chance tells you more about the agency’s history and the very eventful life of this grande dame of literary agenting, spanning almost an entire century.