Lynn C. Franklin, Literary Agent and Memoirist on Adoption, Dies at 74

Literary researcher and agent Lynn C. Franklin, who made a name for herself with her own book, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, in which she shared her personal story about giving up her son for adoption in the 1960s, died at her home on July 19th. house in Manhattan. He was 74 years old.

His sister, Laurie Franklin Callahan, said the cause was metastatic breast cancer.

Beginning in the 1970s, growing up as a worldwide Army custodian, Ms. Franklin built a career as a scout for international publishers, finding and purchasing the rights for upcoming books to be translated and published in North America. in other countries.

He headed Lynn C. Franklin Associates, his own boutique literary agency specializing in non-fiction in New York, and represented numerous distinguished writers in their fields. The most prominent among them Archbishop TutuSouth African Nobel laureate who led the fight against apartheid and with whom he developed a close friendship. He has sold the rights to several of his books, including his post-apartheid memoir “No Future Without Forgiveness” (1999). Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which was the president.

But perhaps the closest to his heart was his own book, “The Circle May Not Be Broken: An Intimate Journey into the Heart of Adoption” (1998, with Elizabeth Ferber) is a description of her experience as a biological mother who gave up her son for adoption in 1966 and was reunited with him 27 years later. More than a memoir, the book serves as a guide, as it covers many aspects of adoption not only from the biological mother’s perspective, but also from the perspective of the adopted child and adoptive family.

Ms. Franklin was a 19-year-old college sophomore at the American University in Washington when she found out she was pregnant, but she didn’t tell anyone, including the boy’s father. He was planning to marry her, but got out on bail two days before the wedding. “He was a man without much ambition” said in a radio interview With “Alison Larkin Presents” in April. “It was obvious it wasn’t going to work.”

After her parents found out she was pregnant, they sent her to a home for unmarried mothers on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Being unmarried and pregnant was still considered scandalous at the time, and Ms. Franklin was directed to give her baby up for adoption. When he was born, he wanted to keep her, but he also realized that adoption could give him opportunities that he couldn’t.

“I wasn’t ready to be a parent but nobody tried to think about what was good for me and nobody said you had a choice,” she said on a radio show.

For years, he believed that the secrecy surrounding the closed adoption process, in which the biological mother had little or no contact with the child or the adoptive family, contributed to her feelings of shame, guilt, and poor self-esteem.

He had delivered his son along the way Spence-Chapin Services for Families and Children. Years later, both she and her son signed up for the agency, saying they wanted to meet independently. They reunited in 1993, around the time of his father’s death.

“I found myself experiencing intermittent mind-numbing sadness combined with utter joy and excitement,” he wrote in his book. But after she became a part of her son’s life, she began to recover from what she called the “first wound” of losing him. But she also admitted that her adoptive parents were definitely her parents.

As her career as a literary agent flourished, she continued to work on behalf of adoption reform. He believed, as he wrote in an article, that biological mothers who decide to give up their children should not be allowed to change their minds, that “there must be responsibility and a ‘point of no return’ set by law and adhered to.” newspaper in 1995.

He also served on the boards of Spence-Chapin. Donaldson Institute for Adoption.

Kirkus Reviews described its memories as “absorbent” and “comprehensive, provocative discourse about nearly every aspect of the joys and sorrows of everyone involved in the adoption process.”

Lynn Celia Franklin was born on August 18, 1946 in Chicago. His father, Colonel Joseph B. Franklin, was a career Army officer. Born in England, his mother, Theresa (Levy) Franklin, was an antiques dealer.

While living on Army bases, Lynn attended eight different elementary schools, started her freshman year in Sapporo, Japan, and finished eighth grade in Orleans, France. He graduated from high school in Fairfax, Va. and attended American University in Washington, graduating in French in 1968.

He quickly made his way into literary life, working at Kramer Books in Washington and later with the French publisher Hachette in New York.

Ms. Franklin set out on her own in 1976 and forged her global contacts to become a literary scout for international publishers. It participated in the Frankfurt Book Fair, Germany for 41 consecutive years.

One of his first successes as an agent was the publication of Edvard Radzinsky’s “The Last Tsar: The Life and Death of Nicholas II” (1992), edited by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, which became a New York Times bestseller.

He was among the first to introduce his work. Deepak Chopra, wellness and meditation megastar. Including the barn Robert Johnson, The Olympian was once regarded as the world’s best all-round athlete; Jody WilliamsSharing the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize with the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, of which Ms. Williams was the driving force; Mary Robinson, former president of Ireland; and Lee Cockerell service industry veteran and retired vice president of Walt Disney World.

In 1983, Ms. Franklin bought a house in Shelter Island, New York, and while continuing her traveling life, she began to consider Shelter Island on Long Island’s East End as her home.

Joined in 1992 with Todd R. Siegal to form Franklin & Siegal Associates, currently under the ownership of Mr. Siegal, representing more than 20 publishers worldwide and researching books for Hollywood.

Mrs. Franklin was reunited with her son, Hardie Stevens, who was given a nickname in the book, just as he and his wife were expecting their first baby. He was accepted into their family and enjoyed getting to know his two grandchildren and taking them on excursions. In addition to her sister, they and her son survive her.

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