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P. N. Elrod

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Trashing the scammers is FUN! [Oct. 27th, 2006|04:22 am]
P. N. Elrod
[mood |Bloody-minded]
[music |Bach's Toccata in Fugue in D Minor]

And here I was wondering what my next blog entry would be.

The following is courtesy of a link via Miss Snark's blog.  I haven't had such a good laugh in a long time. 

Apparently this bunch of qualified nouns have wearied of people like A.C. Crispin & Victoria Strauss working their butts off with others in an effort to shine a light in the slime pit world of publishing preditors.

Instead of earning an honest buck by actually SELLING a book, it's easier for the miserable leeches to attack defenders of integrity.

So here's their website addy.  And I agree with Miss Snark, it is TOTALLY a crock of shit.


A few choice, fair use quotes:

"There are numerous websites trashing agents."  (Only the dishonest and/or inept ones.) 

"Their agenda is to destroy the reputations, and therefore, the business of independent agents.  They do not do this out of the kindness of their hearts, or because they truly care about you, the writer.  They do this for a reason!"

Which is....?  C'mon--inquiring minds want to know!  How does a writer benefit from putting an agent out of business?  It's not like we're competing for territory.

There you have it, kids, the shrill voice of the guilty who hates when someone cuts into their scamming operation. My gawd, they might have to get a REAL job like the rest of us!

I fully support Crispin, Strauss, Jenna Glatzer and others on AbsoluteWrite-dot-com and I get NO recompense for it.  You wanna agenda? Not gonna find one with me.  I'm too freaking busy writing and earning a living.  

I could rip into every false statement on the page titled  "How to spot hate sites who prey on the insecurities of writers."  but you guys can go first.

A legit agency will list writers you have heard of and titles of books they've sold to real publishers.  I have yet to see a single site that makes a point of posting a "warning" against dishonest types.

An honest person doesn't tell you he's honest. An honest person wouldn't think to do that; it just wouldn't occur to him. It's the scammer who puts hand to heart and declares you can trust him.  Yuh-huh.  Nope, I don't think so, sport.

The biggest crock of shit is their Top Ten Best Independent Literary Agents

Here's their list--and some links to back up my comments on them:

Barbara Bauer Literary Agency, Inc On the 20 Worst Agents list. http://www.sfwa.org/beware/twentyworst.html  Is one of the more infamous ones, so much so it inspired my modest one-act musical...  

Capital Literary Agents  Also on 20 Worst Agents list.

Desert Rose Literary Agency  ALSO on 20 Worst Agents list.

Harris Literary Agency  Rinse, repeat.

Martin-McLean Literary Associates  Again.  (Yawn.)

Milligan Literary Agency  Guess what?

Mocknick Productions Literary Agency  Oh, hell, yes!

The last two are on the http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pealsi.htm Not Recommended list.

Nancy Ellis Literary Agency    Charges fee.  Not recommended. A literary agent and member of IILAA.

Sligo Literary Agency LLC Charges fee. Not recommended. Publisher's in-house literary agency and member of IILAA.

The second biggest crock (I'd save my watch, but ain't wearing one just now) is the "publishing myths" page, which is a true work of art when it comes to bald-faced lying.

This page is also fair game, my friends.  

Rip into them and let's read what you have to say.  Post warnings on your own blogs.  Get the word out.  These guys are real vampires, and we need an army of Buffys to take 'em out with a literary stake in the ticker.



[User Picture]From: bladespark
2006-10-27 06:23 am (UTC)
I just like how their website is HORRIBLY designed. I can't read their text against their background in several places. How professional of them.
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From: alessandrastarr
2006-10-27 06:49 am (UTC)
Its funny how much time and money they spend on this, why don't they just get real jobs?
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[User Picture]From: coyotecc
2006-10-27 07:12 am (UTC)
*grabs a stake* Whose first????
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[User Picture]From: st_jb
2006-10-27 05:00 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I'm having a terrible time with HTML.

One more time, with feeling! (and without the markup)

--There are numerous websites trashing agents.

How 'bout a link or two?

I could trash that whole thing line-by-line (and did, but I think I'd run afoul of fair use), but in a nutshell, this whole page bothers the crap outta me.

First and foremost, they spend time bashing the scam busters, but this organization has a private domain registration through Domains By Proxy, a division of GoDaddy. That does not, however, hide their hosting service, which just happens to be the same small company in San Angelo that hosts Desert Rose Literary Agency among other local businesses. Please understand that I'm not saying anything against the hosting company. I also don't have a problem with a member of an organization arranging for hosting services. Heck, I did that with a non-profit I worked with once. But the apparent subterfuge of hiding domain registration combined with the other red flags on this site does bother me.

I checked out these agencies. Most charge fees. One has a division that is a publisher. These practices do not adhere to the AAR Canon of Ethics. No, they don't have to belong to the AAR. Many legitimate agencies to not. But why should I pay an agent for something another agent will do for free? By "free" I mean it's part of the cost of doing business. It's covered by the commissions I'd pay. The AAR Canon of Ethics does indeed allow for agents to pass along certain costs (travel is not mentioned, interestingly enough), but only if the client has agreed to reimburse the expenses. That doesn't sound like hidden fees to me.

I found this while poking around on the AAR site: "The AAR was formed in 1991 through the merger of the Society of Author's Representatives (founded in 1928) and the Independent Literary Agents Association (founded in 1977)."

Draw your own conclusions.
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[User Picture]From: astrokender
2006-10-28 09:14 pm (UTC)
Thanks for pointing out some of the Worst Agents: Stay Away. There is nothing quite worse than someone taking advantage of people with dreams. Sadly, it happens all the time.
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