ULTRA LITERARY was founded by publishing veteran Peter McGuigan.
Our list of clients includes established names in literature, journalism, comedy, film, television, sports, music, pop culture, and business, and also prize-winning fiction writers, covering an eclectic range of subjects. ULTRA continues to provide clients with creative, thoughtful, strategic management that ensures their books find the largest possible audiences.
“ULTRA is creative, funky, punky, and punches above its weight,” says McGuigan. “But more than anything, ULTRA believes that books are more valuable, more popular, more important than ever.”
With mega-bestselling clients including Jennette McCurdy and Trevor Noah, Peter McGuigan represents literary stars, both today’s and tomorrows. After almost thirty years in the book publishing business, Peter has seen the industry - and the agent's role in it - evolve.
"Selling books is easy. Developing inspiring projects and guiding them to success is the real work of being an agent today. "
Peter began his publishing career outside of the mail room, working as a bike messenger, then worked in bookstores before landing a job as an assistant at a small agency. He focused on foreign rights, and international publishing remains one of his passions. Five years working in corporate publishing convinced Peter that he was independent at heart, and he took a job at Sanford J. Greenburger Associates, where he began developing his own diverse client list and worked with Bestselling authors such as Dan Brown and Nicholas Sparks.
With Foundry Literary + Media, Peter created a large, independent agency that became known for high-quality bestsellers. Dewey, The Monuments Men, Dopesick, Trevor Noah's Born A Crime, Cassandra Peterson’s Yours Cruelly, Elvira - these projects were not only massively successful around the world, they were all developed from scratch by Peter, the author and their team.
"I am not interested in documenting popular culture," he says. "I want to create popular culture."
Foundry's 13 year run, including massive bestsellers from Jenn Sincero, Mark Manson, Trevor Noah and others, set a high bar for independent, internationally-focused book publishing. Peter also became a producer of TV and film, with credits appearing in Dopesick, Stronger, Searching for Neverland and many other projects.
“Peter McGuigan is one of the core ingredients that made Born A Crime the success it is. The great riddle of books has always been- If a great book is written in the forest but there’s no one to help sell it, then was the book ever written? Thanks to Peter, I never needed to answer this question.” – Trevor Noah
Starting with Ultra Literary’s very first book - Jennette McCurdy’s #1 International Bestseller I'm Glad My Mom Died - Peter aims to make a statement: books are thrilling. Publishing today requires tenacity, ingenuity and vision. Drawn to smart, offbeat nonfiction, particularly works of narrative non-fiction, Peter is a wide-ranging pop culture lover, and this shows in his client list. April Ryan. Lol Tolhurst. Grant Morrison. Kyle Petty. Cassandra Peterson. Frank Figliuzzi. Tim Matheson. Vicky Nguyen. And of course, Trevor Noah and Jennette McCurdy.
“Ultra is high energy, results driven, and client customized. The personal touch makes the difference.” – Frank Figliuzzi
Ultra Literary strives to be a beacon of quality and creativity in a sea of copycats and "comp titles." Peter and his every-expanding crew at Ultra are excited about the future of books and the worlds that they lend to other mediums, from film to podcast to translation to audio original. Clients get more than literary representation, they have doors opened to them around the world and in all formats.
"I love working with writers, and I see a galaxy of opportunity for authors who need more than a salesperson. If you are uniquely creative and crave success, I can't wait to work with you."
Kirsten believes that books provide an incredibly powerful method to deliver important messages to readers around the world. Those messages can and do change not just the conversations we have with each other, but also with ourselves. Her list of clients includes entrepreneurs, personalities, influencers and thought leaders across a wide range of industries. Her hands on, thoughtful approach to representation begins with helping her authors develop the right book concept to best highlight their stories and goals, in addition to connecting with and enhancing their existing platforms. Once she’s procured the best possible deal and publisher for her clients, she remains a steady presence by their side, ensuring each step of the process is handled as seamlessly and carefully as possible. This approach helps her clients have successful books the first time around, and on subsequent books as well.
She represents bestselling authors such as Shark Tank star and founder of FUBU Daymond John, award-winning journalist Kristin Ohlson, author of Burn Rate and founder of Bonobos, Andy Dunn, host of American Ninja Warrior Akbar Gbajabiamila, star of The Hills and The Hills: New Beginnings, Audrina Patridge, founder & CEO of Lil Mixins and author of the revolutionary new guide for parents The Baby and the Biome, Meenal Lele, as well as internet phenom and New York Times bestselling picture book authors Parker and Jessica Curry amongst many others. Upcoming projects include memoirs by Chief Investigative reporter for Inside Edition, Lisa Guerrero, designer of the iconic Boy Meets Girl fashion brand, Stacy Igel and many more. She’s always looking for books that accomplish three important things, the right concept/story, the right author, and the right time.