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Jennifer Banash, Jess Zafarris Join Gotham Ghostwriters in Major Expansion

Posted: May 6, 2019 | By:

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Gotham Ghostwriters is delighted to announced the hiring of two new senior team members: acclaimed author and ghostwriter Jennifer Banash as Director of its Creative Writing practice; and former Writer’s Digest content strategist and digital content director Jessica Zafarris as Executive Director of Marketing and Communications.

The two hires mark the second phase of Gotham’s expansion that began last fall with the addition of veteran editor Michael Signorelli as Managing Director of the company's Bookwriting Group in September 2018.

"This is a major breakthrough for our agency and our growth plans," said Gotham Founder and CEO Dan Gerstein. "With Jennifer and Jessica on board, we will be able to substantially expand our visibility, our relationships in the publishing industry, and the range of our service offerings to a new universe of clients."

Banash joins the agency after more than 15 years in the editorial services field, where she did ghostwriting, editing, and conceptualization for a range of clients. She is also the author of five of her own young adult novels. Her most recent book, Silent Alarm (G.P. Putnam), was a finalist for the American Library Association’s Best Work of Young Adult Fiction prize and is currently being developed for television. Jennifer is also a former professor of English and Creative Writing and the former co-founder and editor of Impetus Press, a small, independent publishing house that championed works of literary fiction with a pop edge.

Banash will head up and grow the agency’s newly expanded Creative Writing practice, which will focus on helping clients develop, write, edit, and publish novels, screenplays, scripts, and other creative works.

"Jennifer brings an exceptional mix of skills and experience both as a storyteller and an author whisperer that makes her uniquely qualified to build this highly specialized practice into the go-to destination for authors who need expert help in telling and selling their stories," Gerstein said.

Zafarris comes to Gotham after five years at F+W Media, parent company of enthusiast brands and publications including Writer’s Digest, Sky & Telescope, Family Tree, Deer & Deer Hunting and Artist’s Network. During that time, Zafarris served as editor and online content director for the design publications HOW and Print, for which she earned a min/Folio Rising Star Award for media professionals under 30, as well as content strategist and digital content director for Writer’s Digest. She has also served as a freelance content and engagement strategy consultant for several startups and major brands. With a professional background in digital and print journalism, her work has appeared in the Denver Business Journal, ABC News, and the Memphis Commercial Appeal.

Zafarris will oversee marketing and communications for the agency, enhancing external and in-network messaging, establishing and managing partner relations, supporting its client and writer networks, and extending the reach, profile, and visibility of the brand.

"Jess is a killer combo of digital and strategic savvy with the soul and sensitivity of a writer," Gerstein said. "That makes her ideally suited to fill this critical pillar in our capabilities and expand our brand in front of the audiences we need to reach."


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