Founded by Kate Woodrow in 2015, Present Perfect Dep't. is a literary agency based in San Francisco and Oakland, California. Laura Lee Mattingly joined as partner in 2016. Kate and Laura Lee have a combined 20 years of editorial experience at major trade publishing houses, and now as agents represent the best in relevant, thoughtful, beautiful books.

Present Perfect Dep't. is a place where good ideas get great—and get published.

 photo by liz daly.

 photo by liz daly.

Kate Woodrow

I specialize in artist representation, especially illustrators and painters. I'm looking for projects driven by visual content and gift-worthy books about creativity and personal passions—everything from literature and drawing to science and pizza. The common thread is books that encourage people to spend more time with the things in life that they find meaningful and beautiful. I also enjoy developing guided journals or gift products driven by an interesting production element or interactive concept.

Before launching PPD in 2015, I spent a decade as an editor at Chronicle Books, where I developed more than 300 books and paper products (see portfolio for a selection). Taking so many of these projects from brainstorm to bookshelf gave me a keen sense of what makes a book successful, and how to convey that to an acquiring editor. I also copyedited the lifestyle magazine Anthology for its 21-issue run and am passionate about art and design.

Listen to Kate talk about the pitch process on The Jealous Curator podcast here


photo by peter ellenby

photo by peter ellenby

Laura Lee Mattingly

I’m looking for books that get to the heart of living well, whether the topic is unlocking creativity, forging a new career path, redefining work, exploring new places, cultivating mindfulness, or practicing self-care. I’m passionate about titles that help readers discover more purpose, joy, and fulfillment in life.

Through my work at Hyperion Books, Random House, HarperCollins, and most recently as a senior editor at Chronicle Books, I’ve had the privilege of editing hundreds of books—including numerous national and New York Times bestsellers—that reflect these passions (check out my portfolio for a selection of these titles). I’ve collaborated with bloggers, life coaches, podcasters, photographers, business owners, and lifestyle personalities to turn their book visions into printed reality.

Listen to Laura Lee talk about working with an agent on the Being Boss podcast here