Agent Savant

The musings of literary agent Laurie McLean

FUSE Literary Acquires Penumbra Literary and Adds Jennifer Chen Tran as Associate Agent

Written By: laurie - May• 26•15

May 25th 2015 – San Francisco, California – FUSE LITERARY, the hybrid literary agency that brings technology and innovation to the more traditional aspects of book publishing, today announced the acquisition of Penumbra Literary LLC and the addition of its principal and owner Jennifer Chen Tran as an Associate Agent at the firm.

Jennifer Chen Tran

“We are always on the lookout for people and technology that will further our vision to create the literary agency of the future,” said Laurie McLean, who formed Fuse Literary (formerly Foreword Literary) two years ago alongside her business partner Gordon Warnock.

Gordon and Laurie were impressed by Jennifer’s entrepreneurial spirit and professionalism, as well as her wide-ranging client list and background in publishing law. Penumbra’s focus on books that can change the world also fit right in with the Fuse Literary mentality. Prior to establishing Penumbra Literary, Jennifer served as Of Counsel at The New Press and interned at Zachary Shuster and Harmsworth literary agency.

“We’ve always sought to not only be the change in publishing but to do so in a socially responsible manner,” Gordon said. “We’re very excited about what Penumbra brings to the table.”

“I’ve been following Fuse for awhile,” Jennifer said, “and after Jen Karsbaek stepped back from being an agent to being the agency’s Midwest scout, I reached out to Gordon and Laurie, and things just developed from there. The timing was right for me both personally and professionally and I can’t say enough good things about Laurie, Gordon, and everyone else at Team Fuse.”

“Fuse Literary is at the forefront of continual changes in the publishing industry, and their motto of ‘Igniting Author Careers’ is progressive and in perfect alignment with my core values for my author-clients. I am elated to join Team Fuse and continue to grow and champion my authors’ careers, and to assist them in publishing books that entertain, delight, and make a difference in the world.”

As a Fuse agent, Jennifer is now seeking a balance of nonfiction and fiction, specifically: literary fiction, commercial fiction, women’s fiction, upmarket fiction, mature Young Adult, New Adult, graphic novels, memoir, narrative fiction, lifestyle books, narrative non-fiction, and commercial non-fiction (particularly in the areas of biography, current affairs, medical, history, pop-culture, social entrepreneurism, and psychology). As a second-generation Taiwanese-American, Jennifer is particularly drawn to fiction that represents diverse characters from marginalized and under-represented communities. As for non-fiction, Jennifer loves to work with passionate individuals in shaping book proposals that are both inspirational and instructive.


Fuse Literary is a new type of hybrid literary agency, blending the knowledge and skills of traditional book publishing with the brash new opportunities engendered by digital publishing, self-publishing, ebooks, social media, and technology. The company has agents in California, New York, Vancouver, and Chicago. Founding partners Laurie McLean and Gordon Warnock are joined by agents Connor Goldsmith, Emily Keyes, Michelle Richter, Sara Sciuto, and Jennifer Chen Tran, as well as book scout Jen Karsbaek, in house publicist Estelle Hallick, and a wide-ranging group of interns and readers. For more, visit or follow us on Twitter @FuseLiterary.

For more information contact:
Gordon Warnock, Fuse Literary, 916-549-5864
Jennifer Chen Tran, Fuse Literary 516-350-1653

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *