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Thread: Van Diest Literary Agency

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Van Diest Literary Agency

    Does anyone have background info on this agency:

    David Van Diest
    Van Diest Literary Agency
    PO Box 1482
    Sisters, Oregon 97759
    541-549-0477

    Reason: I sent requested material for Days of Elijah: A True Story to this agent.

    Van Diest refused the option for the manuscript and was asked to safely dispose of the material - manuscript and marketing plan. (Days of Elijah has since been independently published - see elizaearsman.com.)

    Now I find on the Van Diest Literary Agency website - under Services/Guidlines (their spelling, not mine!) - the following taken from that Days of Elijah manuscript i.e:

    'The following has become the driving force for the agency.

    From the cowardice that shrinks from new truth
    From the laziness that is content with half truth
    From the arrogance of the one who thinks he knows all truth
    Oh, God of Truth, deliver me'


    Now see my website http://www.elizaearsman.com/pageflipping.html for details of that wording.


    I have emailed Van Diest asking for an explanation. He has not yet replied.


    Any info appreciated.


    With thanks.
    Last edited by CaoPaux; 02-11-2011 at 09:22 AM. Reason: breaking extraneous link

  2. #2
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Can you provide a link to the agency's website, so we can see that quote in place? It would help a lot.

  3. #3
    Preditors & Editors Requiescat In Pace DaveKuzminski's Avatar
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    Since I'm unfamiliar with that quote, I must ask. Is that quote actually by someone anonymous?
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  4. #4
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Aha!

    There it is, with the text just as eliza4 has quoted it.

    If that were direct quote from your book, Eliza, and you weren't in turn quoting anyone else, then they shouldn't have used the quote without accrediting you, and you could have written to them to demand that they took it down with immediate effect.

    However, as it's the text of an ancient prayer (I know, I just Googled the first line and got 582 hits) then I don't think there's anything that you can do--anyone can quote it without infringing anything, as far as I understand it. If your worry is that they're going to plagiarise your book, then I don't think you've got anything to worry about: agents and editors get far too many submissions from writers seeking publication for them to have to scratch around and find people who don't want them to publish their work.

  5. #5
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Just a note that Van Diest / Christian L.A. at christianliteraryagency.com should not be confused with The Christian Literary Agency (christianliterary.com) which is one of WLA/TLAG's many scammy tentacles.
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  6. #6
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Van Diest Agency.

    With thanks to all who have so far replied.

    I was actually asking if those in the forums have further/background info re David Van Diest/this agency. There doesn't seem to be much - of substance - on his website!

    The link requested is:

    http://christianliteraryagency.com.f...&id=4&Itemid=4

    Thanks again.

  7. #7
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    There's a potential conflict of interest here, in that the Van Diests also own a fee-charging publishing company, Last Chapter Publishing.

    - Victoria

  8. #8
    practical experience, FTW
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    A friend of mine was represented by David. He did get her a contract with a mainstream Christian publisher.

    I don't know whether he's part of the fee-charging publishing company; that could be other family members. The Van Diests have a long history in Christian publishing but they aren't all involved in all the same aspects of publishing.

  9. #9
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    With thanks for replying.

    Many of the present day 'Christian' publishers are now in fact Scottish Ritual Freemasonry (Masonic) publishers which doesn't equate at all! Some try to keep their affiliations hidden but Van Deist/s can soon be checked.

    In any case, my website elizaearsman.com contains details of two authenticated nonfiction publications which have been published independently of Van Deist involvements.

    5-star reviews are on amazon.com.

    Have a great day and a blessed 2010.

    Eliza
    elizaearsman.com/images/News_PressRelease.pdf
    Last edited by CaoPaux; 02-11-2011 at 09:23 AM. Reason: breaking extraneous links

  10. #10
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CAWriter View Post
    I don't know whether he's part of the fee-charging publishing company; that could be other family members.
    His and his wife's bios are on the publisher's website.

    - Victoria

  11. #11
    practical experience, FTW
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    I've met David Van Diest and his father (formerly of Multnomah Publishers; I know many present and former Multnomah editors and other staff) and I can say with pretty much certainty that there is no Freemasonry connection there. That's quite an aspersion to cast.

  12. #12
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    I am not/have not been casting asperions!

    What I said was that details - including Van Deist ones - can be checked by anybody. I do know their bios are on their site. Experience has led me to be well away from them.

    Is it not the case that Multnomah was sold? Is it not now part of BMG - of which further details can be found on e.g. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bertelsmann?

    As for: 'no Freemasonry connection there.' Maybe David Van Deist can be asked to reply/clarify. That way no misunderstanding can be allowed.

    Eliza.
    www.elizaearsman.com

  13. #13
    Writer is as Writer does Terie's Avatar
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    Um. This is a background check forum regarding business practices, not personal beliefs. Any relationship or lack thereof with Freemasonry has nothing to do with this literary agency's business practices.
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  14. #14
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Terie,

    As far as I am concerned this problem/thread is now closed. I have now no connection with Van Deist. I do not need to be informed of further messages re that topic.

    FYI: Your quote: 'Any relationship or lack thereof with Freemasonry has nothing to do with this literary agency's business practices.' Masonic business practices are very much to do with others!

    Have a good day.

    Eliza.
    www.elizaearsman.com

  15. #15
    Seen 'em come, seen 'em go Gravity's Avatar
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    I think Mr. Van Diest dodged a bullet. Just sayin'.
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  16. #16
    Author PeteDutcher's Avatar
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    So is it a legit agency or a front for a vanity?

    I'm having a lot of trouble finding a Christian Literary Agent.

  17. #17
    I'm already a real writer. Katrina S. Forest's Avatar
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    The website says that David Van Diest is now working with the DC Jacobson and Associates team. (Though it says he's still an "independent agent" so I have no idea how he's working with them.) Anyway, the thread for them is here:

    http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=134508

    If it was my book, I would personally not submit to Van Diest for the following reasons:
    1) Conflict of interest, as Victoria has stated.
    2) Poor spelling and grammar on the website.
    3) Non-standard submission materials. They ask for a "marketing plan: How do you plan to sell this book?" in their submission guidelines. Selling the book is not the author's job.

    They also ask for you to submit your work to their "Acquisitions Editor." Last I checked, that's not a job you get at an agency.

    Just my two cents. I'm not sure what this agency would do for me that I couldn't do for myself.
    "So we must daily keep things wound: that is, we must pray when prayer seems dry as dust; we must write when we are physically tired, when our hearts are heavy" -Madeleine L'Engle

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  18. #18
    practical experience, FTW
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    Quote Originally Posted by PeteDutcher View Post
    So is it a legit agency or a front for a vanity?

    I'm having a lot of trouble finding a Christian Literary Agent.
    It's not a front for a vanity; they have secured regular contracts with mainstream Christian publishers.

    If you're having trouble locating a Christian agent, have you checked out the "Christian Writer's Market Guide?" The names would need to be vetted like any from a market guide, but I know Sally (Stuart) does a great job putting it together (well, has done, as she sold it effective the 2012 version) and you'll get many more names to pursue than you may have found on your own.

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