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Thread: The Barone Literary Agency (Denise Barone, Esq)

  1. #1
    practical experience, FTW Adobedragon's Avatar
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    The Barone Literary Agency (Denise Barone, Esq)

    Someone over at my publisher's newsgroup was asking about Denise Barone Esq., an agent with the Barone Literary Agency.

    The agency has no website. There is a listing at P&E, but no sales indicated. Denise Barone Esq is apparently a lawyer, specializing in family law in the Ohio. I can't find any mention of her name with regard to publishing. The only address I found for the agency matches that law office.

    According to the person at the newsgroup, Ms. Barone said she was a published author. I Googled and it appears that Ms. Barone is published under the pseudonyms, Denise Gwen and Gwen Williams. Her novels are published by e-pubs, a couple released as POD print.

    So is my information, what little there is, correct?

    Or is there another Denise Barone, literary agent? One with an actual track record?


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  2. #2
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    No listing or deals listed at PM.
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  3. #3
    Professor of applied misanthropy Drachen Jager's Avatar
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    I just saw a comment on QT, an author signed with her and called her a 'dream agent'. Either the author is deluded or she knows something we don't.

    BTW, website is here:

    http://baroneliteraryagency.com/


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    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drachen Jager View Post
    I just saw a comment on QT, an author signed with her and called her a 'dream agent'.
    Poor thing. I have dreams about agents like that too.
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  5. #5
    practical experience, FTW KalenO's Avatar
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    At the risk of sounding argumentative, I would just like to remind everyone that the internet is a surprisingly small place, and that most people making use of such resources as QueryTracker are quite likely to make use of resources like AbsoluteWrite as well.

    And as I know the author referred to here, I have to admit I have a problem with a community of aspiring writers dedicated to supporting each other being so quick to dismiss one of their own colleagues as deluded or a poor thing to be pitied. I haven't actually had a chance to speak with her since she signed with Denise Barone, but I read her success story on her blog, which was linked to in the post where she referred to Ms. Barone as a 'dream agent.' As she explained on her blog, and as mentioned in the first post here, doing her due diligence reassured her that Ms. Barone was listed at Preditors and Editors and had no warnings to be wary of. She was similarly aware of her lack of sales reported to Publisher's Marketplace, and a frequenter of QT, AQ, and many agent blogs, none of which is the mark of a deluded wannabe.

    As I said, I haven't spoken to her and so I don't know what precisely made her sign with such an unknown quantity, other than the details she mentioned on QT and her blog: Ms. Barone requested her full within 24 hours and emailed her to offer rep six hours later, with extensive notes and thoughts for revisions and strategy. The author then emailed the half a dozen or so other agents (VERY reputable ones I might add) currently reviewing her full manuscript, to inform them of her offer.

    So perhaps by dream agent she meant someone who seemed as excited by her work as she was. She's released a couple ebooks herself, so I'm quite sure she's aware of Ms. Barone's association with ebooks and that might have played a part. I do know she regularly states that she's not in this to get rich and famous, and just wants to share her stories, and so perhaps Ms. Barone simply had a highly effective pitch that convinced her she could help her get her stories out to more readers in a way that matched her own vision. We don't know. All agents have to start somewhere after all, and if Ms. Barone's start seems unorthodox to the rest of us, well, we don't have to query her. But don't begrudge or belittle those that choose to take a chance on her for whatever reason.

    It doesn't automatically mean they're foolish or deluded or less knowledgeable about agents and the publishing game in general than anyone else here. It simply means, as Drachen speculated, that they know something the rest of you don't know.

    Their own personal motivations.

  6. #6
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    KalenO, I appreciate your concern, and can see where the use of "deluded" might upset you. And I certainly don't mean in my following comments to put down any writer or make fun or whatever else. But the fact is that publishing is very much a "who you know" business; it's all about connections. And most agents without sales...well, they usually stay agents without sales. No one is begrudging or belittling, we're simply concerned.

    I urge you to take a look at the "Index" thread in this subforum, and note the agents names listed in gray. Those are agencies/agents who started without connections, and they failed. I can think of exactly one agent who started from scratch, as it were, without first interning and being an assistant at an established agency (which is where 99.9% of successful agents get their "start somewhere") who has made some kind of success in the business. And that apparently required a HUGE amount of work, and years before making that first real sale, and is still considered by many to be not-so-successful.

    I don't say this to put anyone down or even as a direct comment on this agent. I'm just pointing out why those of us with experience in the industry view start-up agents without prior publishing experience with a "we'll see but don't hold out much hope" sort of attitude. We've seen too many agents fail, and take years of their clients' work with them. It's very possible others know something we don't know, we're just basing opinions on what we do know, and what we've seen.

    The intent here is never, EVER, to begrudge or belittle another writer. We're here because we want to help. No one would like to see new agents succeed more than us; we're simply aware--maybe more than most--of the odds.
    Last edited by Stacia Kane; 05-19-2011 at 10:38 AM.
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    Hagiographically Advantaged AW Moderator HapiSofi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KalenO View Post
    It doesn't automatically mean they're foolish or deluded or less knowledgeable about agents and the publishing game in general than anyone else here. It simply means, as Drachen speculated, that they know something the rest of you don't know: Their own personal motivations.
    I'm sure they know a great many things I don't. What I do know is that becoming the client of an agent who has no sales record is never a good idea, and having a bad or inept agent is worse than having no agent at all.

    That's true, and remains true, no matter what the writer's motives.
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  8. #8
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    I agree that there are reasons for someone to be concerned, cautious or wary when dealing with an unproven agent. I think most people would prefer a proven agent. And the website is a little odd in that it seems to stress e-pubs. However, I think the message could have been conveyed in better way. There really is no need to call someone deluded. That seems a bit mean-spirited.
    Last edited by SeymourPats; 05-20-2011 at 04:03 AM.

  9. #9
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Denise Barone - Any Updates

    She requested a full MS after reading a few chapters. Any more news on her?

  10. #10
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    Still no sales on PM.
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  11. #11
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Oh well.

  12. #12
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Splinker,
    Did you ever hear anything on your manuscript from the Barone Agency?
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  13. #13
    storm central stormie's Avatar
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    It was announced on a blog yesterday that she (the author) repped by Barone got a publisher--Astraea Press, an e-publisher founded in 2010. Anyway, you don't need an agent to submit to Astraea.

    A cursory search doesn't bring up much.

  14. #14
    *insert catchy phrase here* BarbaraSheridan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stormie View Post
    It was announced on a blog yesterday that she (the author) repped by Barone got a publisher--Astraea Press, an e-publisher founded in 2010. Anyway, you don't need an agent to submit to Astraea.

    A cursory search doesn't bring up much.
    The book in question was also subbed and seen by "big six" print pubs as well who praised the writing but thought the book wasn't "dark enough".

    This wasn't a case of the agent pursuing only e-publishers.
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  15. #15
    storm central stormie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarbaraSheridan View Post
    The book in question was also subbed and seen by "big six" print pubs as well who praised the writing but thought the book wasn't "dark enough".

    This wasn't a case of the agent pursuing only e-publishers.
    But I didn't say that. I said it is being published by an e-publisher who takes submissions without an agent.

  16. #16
    *insert catchy phrase here* BarbaraSheridan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stormie View Post
    But I didn't say that. I said it is being published by an e-publisher who takes submissions without an agent.
    True, but that doesn't necessarily reflect on this agency or their ability to get books in front of editors at major houses.

    Now, if an agency only has a record of selling to e-presses or presses where one doesn't need an agent or encourages clients to pursue those avenues then it should be noted here.
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  17. #17
    storm central stormie's Avatar
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    It's the only sold book I came up with for this agency. But as I said, it was only a quick search.

  18. #18
    Who's going for a beer? waylander's Avatar
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    Her PM page now records a second sale to Astraea Press.
    If those are the only sales she has managed in the 2 years she says she has been in business, then it is an unimpressive track record

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  19. #19
    They've been very bad, Mr Flibble Mr Flibble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stacia Kane View Post
    Still no sales on PM.

    To be fair, my own agent doesn't report sales to PM (as far as I am aware anyway), but he's done me proud.

    It makes it harder to assess, perhaps, but PM isn't everything. Sales can be ascertained elsewhere - for myself, I contacted another member of this forum who is repped by him, and who got a good deal.

    But that ascertaining should be done.




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    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Reports a third sale, to Sweet Cravings/Secret Cravings Publishing.
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  21. #21
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    Ms. Barone was one of the first agents I queried (found from the 2013 Guide to Literary Agents). I probably didn't do enough research on her before querying. I sent her the first 3 chapters, and she responded by asking me to re-write them. I don't really think that's a strange request, but something told me not to do it.

    So I didn't. And now I'm reading this and not feeling quite so guilty about shrugging off a potential agent.

  22. #22
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin Eris0303's Avatar
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    Ms. Barone is closed to submissions until 1/1/15. She's not marked as being closed on QT but it's mentioned in the comments section.

  23. #23
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Updating URL: http://www.denisegwen.com/BLA/index.html

    Her PM page: http://www.publishersmarketplace.com...aroneliterary/

    Recent sales range from Entangled to Solstice.
    Last edited by CaoPaux; 02-02-2017 at 10:06 PM.
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