The Tompkins Agency for Ukrainian Literature in Translation
TAULT is a nonprofit literary agency and translation house devoted to the visibility and availability of contemporary Ukrainian Literature in the English-speaking world. Founded in 2018 by literary translator Zenia Tompkins, TAULT promotes the work of award-winning Ukrainian authors, with a specific interest in Ukraine’s younger generation of writers. Through our New Voices program, we also seek to build visibility for emerging authors of exceptional promise.
TAULT represents Ukrainian literature across a variety of genres and styles, from literary fiction and popular fiction to the growing field of Ukrainian creative nonfiction and the remarkable universe of Ukrainian children’s literature. In collaboration with our translators, we take a comprehensive approach to promoting our authors’ work, with the goal of building a broader audience for both the individual author and contemporary Ukrainian literature as a whole.
WHO WE ARE
Zenia TompkinsFounder, Senior Agent, and Core Translator
Zenia, an American of Ukrainian descent, began translating Ukrainian literature in 2015, after fifteen years’ experience in education, academia, and the private sector. She holds graduate degrees in Middle Eastern Languages and Literatures from the University of Columbia and Islamic Studies from the University of Virginia. A past recipient of fellowships from the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Education, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among others, Zenia has varying levels of proficiency in nine languages. Her first translation, Tanja Maljartschuk’s A Biography of a Chance Miracle, won the 2016-17 Kovaliv Fund Award for best translation of a Ukrainian book. She currently lives in Tegucigalpa as the spouse of a U.S. diplomat, but considers Narrowsburg, NY home. Quite shamefully, her three diplo-tots don’t know a lick of Ukrainian.
Ali KinsellaScout and Core Translator
Ali has been translating from the Ukrainian for seven years. Her published works include essays, poetry, monographs, and subtitles to various films. She holds a Master’s degree in Slavic Studies from Columbia University, where she focused on Eastern European history and literature and wrote a thesis on the intersection of feminism and nationalism in small states. A former Peace Corps volunteer, Ali lived in both Western and Central Ukraine for nearly five years. She is currently a resident of Chicago, where she also sometimes works as a baker. Ali is hopelessly modest: her resume will surprise you.
Nina MurrayCore Translator
A native of the Western Ukrainian city of Lviv, Nina holds degrees in Linguistics and Creative writing. She has translated both poetry and prose from Ukrainian and Russian, including three novels: Peter Aleshkovsky’s Stargorod and Fish from Russian, and Oksana Zabuzhko’s The Museum of Abandoned Secrets from Ukrainian. Minimize Considered, a collection of Nina’s own poetry, was published by Finishing Line Press, and a second collection, Alcestis in the Underworld, is forthcoming from Circling Rivers press. Currently, Nina is deeply absorbed in training her new dog, Koto.
Hanna LelivAffiliated Translator
Hanna is another Lviv native, and holds an MA in English Language and Literature from Lviv Ivan Franko National University. With the support of a Fulbright Scholarship, Hanna attended the University of Iowa’s MFA in Literary Translation program in 2017-2018. She has translated books by Kazuo Ishiguro, Ernest Hemingway, and Stephen Hawking, and her translations into English have appeared in The Washington Square Review, The Adirondack Review, and The Puritan. Hanna is one of those linguistically rare birds that translates in both directions.
Maria holds an MFA in Visual Studies with an emphasis in Illustration from Missouri State University, where she currently teaches. A native of Ukraine who has been living in the U.S. since her late teens, she is the author and illustrator of multiple bilingual Ukrainian-English children’s books. Maria recently joined the TAULT team to assist with marketing-related design, the procurement of cover art in Ukraine, and the development of our Children’s Corner. She lives in a world populated by illustrated creatures, typefaces, and other things we don’t understand.
Co-founded in late 2017 by Caitlyn Garcia, a PhD student in French Literature at New York University, and literature aficionado Andrea Goldbergova of Brno, Apofenie is a magazine of modern Central and Eastern European literature, with a special interest in contemporary Ukrainian authors. To date, the journal has published issues highlighting the literary scenes in present-day Ukraine and the Czech Republic, as well as translations from other languages of the region.
Cadmus is a small press devoted to translations of literature from Eastern and Southeastern Europe that was co-founded in 2015 by Edward Lipsett and Dr. George T. Sipos as a sister-imprint of Kurodahan Press, a publisher of contemporary Japanese literature in translation. The first author published by Cadmus was Zoran Živković of Serbia, whose collected works the press is undertaking. The press published its first Ukrainian author, Tanja Maljartschuk, in 2018.
WHO WE WORK WITH
TAULT works with native-speaking translators at all stages of their careers. Our translators seek to support each other in their respective pursuits, with a shared mission of helping to promote Ukrainian literature in the English-speaking world. The authors whose work we represent are, likewise, at various stages of their careers, but we see both tremendous talent and promise in all of them.
TAULT is currently promoting books published by Old Lion Publishing (Lviv), Books XXI (Chernivtsi), Tempora (Kyiv), KSD/Family Leisure Club (Kharkiv), KM Books (Kyiv), Nora-Druk (Kyiv), Krok (Ternopil), and Krytyka (Kyiv).