Andrew Lownie

Andrew Lownie was born in 1961 and was educated in Britain and America. He read history at Magdalene College, Cambridge where he was President of the Union. He went on to gain an MSc at Edinburgh University and spend a year at the College of Law in London. After a period as a bookseller and journalist, he began his publishing career as the graduate trainee at Hodder & Stoughton. In 1985 became an agent at John Farquharson, now part of Curtis Brown, and the following year became the then youngest director in British publishing when he was appointed a director. He set up the Andrew Lownie Literary Agency in 1988.

In 1998 he founded The Biographers Club, a monthly dining society for biographers and those involved in promoting biography, and The Biographers' Club Prize which supports first-time biographers. He has a regular advice column in the writing magazine Words with Jam, writes an entry each year on submitting to agents for The Writers Handbook, contributed to The Arvon Book of Life Writing and regularly gives talks on aspects of publishing.​


Stalin's Englishman: the lives of Guy Burgess

Saturday 25th March - 14.30 - 15.30

Andrew Lownie unravels the many lives of Guy Burgess, the most important, complex and fascinating of 'The Cambridge Spies', in all their intriguing, chilling, colourful, tragi-comic wonder.


Guy Burgess was the most important, complex and fascinating of 'The Cambridge Spies' - Maclean, Philby, Blunt - all brilliant young men recruited in the 1930s to betray their country to the Soviet Union. In this first full biography, Andrew Lownie shows us how even Burgess's chaotic personal life of drunken philandering did nothing to stop his penetration and betrayal of the British Intelligence Service. Even when he was under suspicion, the fabled charm which had enabled many close personal relationships with influential Establishment figures (including Winston Churchill) prevented his exposure as a spy for many years. Through interviews with more than a hundred people who knew Burgess personally, many of whom have never spoken about him before, and the discovery of hitherto secret files, Stalin's Englishman brilliantly unravels the many lives of Guy Burgess in all their intriguing, chilling, colourful, tragi-comic wonder.

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Routes to Publishing: Traditional vs. Independent

Sunday 26th March - 11.00 - 12.00

Andrew Lownie and Rachel Abbott discuss the pros and cons of the different publishing models available to writers now. Why are some authors leaving their long term publishers to follow the indie route, while successful self-published authors chase a traditional deal?

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