Souvenir Press pre-empts 'unbearably funny' Create Your Own Midlife Crisis by Marie Phillips

Claire Coughlan
Rights - NonFiction Tuesday, 12 March 2019

Newly appointed publisher Rebecca Gray's first signing for the Profile imprint

Souvenir Press, now an imprint of Profile, has pre-empted the "unbearably funny" Create Your Own Midlife Crisis by novelist Marie Phillips. This is the first acquistion for publisher Rebecca Gray, who was appointed to her new role last month. Gray bought UK and Commonwealth rights (excluding Canada) from Kerry Glencorse at Susanna Lea Associates.

Create Your Own Midlife Crisis is a "hugely entertaining adventure through the many small decisions that lead us to where we find ourselves in midlife - often somewhere very different to where we dreamed we’d be. What if you had a chance to do it over, and make different choices? Like all the best humour, it captures something profound about how frazzled and overwhelmed a lot of people (particularly women) feel in midlife, but does it with wit and imagination." Phillips' third novel, Oh, I Do Like to Be... was published in January 2019 by Unbound.

Gray said: "From the moment I decided to text Fit Russell on the first page, I have been crazy about this book. The proposal travelled from hand to hand around the office provoking squawks of laughter and recognition as it went. Marie has put everyone in hysterics, spoken directly to our mid-life hearts, filled us with (appropriate) amounts of fear about what this madness might make us do, and done it with good humour, a sense of the absurd, and a dash of sympathy too. I am so glad her book is my first acquisition for Souvenir, and now I'm going to see if I can disable the aubergine emoji on my phone, just in case."

Phillips said: "When I was a kid I really loved those books where you got to make your own story, even though I always ended up in a dungeon being tortured by a warlock or eaten by a troll. At the time those stories seemed nothing like real life. But lately, I've had so many conversations with friends in midlife in which we wonder how the choices our younger selves made led us to the places we are now, every small decision adding up in increments until we end up somewhere we never dreamed we'd go, and not always somewhere we particularly wanted to be. And unlike in those books, we can't go back to the start and try for a better result... Until now. I've written this book to give us all a second, third, fourth go at surviving midlife, while indulging in a few unexpected adventures on the way. I'm thrilled that I'll be working with Rebecca and the team at Souvenir Press will to bring the book to life, but I refuse to be responsible for any inappropriate behaviour they indulge in as a result."

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