Joseph Durepos has lived a life in love with books. His avid interest in reading and books led him to a varied career in bookselling and publishing, beginning with a part-time job in a Santa Fe bookstore while attending college in the 1970s. At 27 he became a publisher’s sales representative for Random House. Later, he worked for a decade as a bookseller at one of the country’s most vibrant independent bookstores located in the Chicago suburbs
Then in 1996, Durepos started an independent, boutique literary agency, where he went on to find success selling a wide variety of projects.
Durepos has worked on a number of titles in the religion, spirituality, inspiration, and self-help markets; including best-selling books like: Life’s Greatest Lessons (Simon & Schuster) by Hal Urban, The Rhythm of Life and The Seven Levels of Intimacy (Simon & Schuster) by Matthew Kelly, The Complete Elder Care Planner (Penguin Random House) by Joy Loverde, and The Conversation Piece (Ballantine Books) by Bret Nicholaus.
Over his career, he has created, developed and represented numerous best-selling spirituality books that have achieved “classic” status, including Simple Truths by Kent Nerburn, The Invitation (HarperCollins) by Oriah Mountain Dreamer, The Gift of Peace by Cardinal Joseph Bernardin, My Life with the Saints by James Martin, SJ, and No Greater Love by Mother Teresa.
Durepos went to work at Loyola Press in 2002 as Executive Editor/Trade Acquisitions. While at the Press, he acquired several hundred books, including New York Times best-selling authors Pope Francis (Dear Pope Francis), Fr. James Martin (My Life with the Saints), Joan Wester Anderson (In the Arms of Angels) and other best-selling titles including Pope John Paul II’s Go in Peace and Pope Francis’s The Church of Mercy.
At Loyola Press, Durepos was part of a dynamic team that helped develop and publish books by authors like Joe Paprocki (The Catechist’s Toolbox and Practice Makes Catholic), Chris Lowney (Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way He Leads and Make Today Matter), Fr. Richard Rohr (On the Threshold of Transformation), Kerry Weber (Mercy in the City), and Heather King (Stripped and Holy Desperation). His books have won numerous Christopher Awards, Independent Publisher’s Awards and the Association of Catholic Publishers Book of the Year Award three times.
As both an agent and editor, his books have included New York Times Best Sellers, Publishers Weekly Religion Best Sellers, the Chicago Tribune Best Sellers, Amazon’s Hot 100 Sellers, and have won Publisher's Weekly's Best Books of the Year awards twice.
Durepos retired in late 2018 after four decades as an acquisitions editor, literary agent, publisher’s sales rep, and bookseller. He was inducted in to the Association of Catholic Publishers Hall of Fame in 2019.
Today he owns and operates Durepos Literary and continues to support authors as a coach, consultant, and independent literary agent. He lives outside Chicago with his wife Mary, and their dog Milly.