On the 26th day of March, 1928, the first meeting of the directors of McIntosh and Otis, Inc., a new literary agency, was held. Those present were Mavis McIntosh, Elizabeth R. Otis, and Annie Laurie Williams. Trailblazers of their day, Mavis McIntosh and Elizabeth Otis were the first women to run their own agency. They worked in conjunction with Annie Laurie Williams, one of the most influential film agents of her time, who sold the film rights to many classic novels, including GONE WITH THE WIND and THE GRAPES OF WRATH.
In 1963, Dorothy Markinko established a vibrant children’s department at McIntosh & Otis and represented numerous authors, such as Ed Young, Scott O’Dell, Daniel Pinkwater and Virginia Hamilton.
The agency stayed primarily in the hands of women until Eugene H. Winick, who for many years represented M&O as its attorney, became President upon the retirement of its previous owner, Patricia Myrer. Myrer was known for having discovered authors including Phyllis Whitney, Mary Higgins Clark, and Victoria Holt.
Gene Winick, who negotiated many record-setting deals, secured the first eight-figure contract in the publishing industry for Mary Higgins Clark. Under Gene’s leadership, the agency, now managed by his daughter, Elizabeth Winick Rubinstein, continues its legacy as an advocate for new authors as well as the guardian and supporter of the works of major literary figures.