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Thread: [Agency] Agenzia Letteraria Idoli D'inchiostro / Literary House

  1. #1
    Filled with optimism. And scotch. Miguelito's Avatar
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    [Agency] Agenzia Letteraria Idoli D'inchiostro / Literary House

    I came across this Publisher's Marketplace page for an agency and its list of agents:

    Alexis Avi
    Thomas Stean
    Joshua Siemens
    Julien Moore

    But, for all their experience, I can't find a shred of other info on them here or on the web. Anybody else have a better idea of who they are and what their track record is?

  2. #2
    Great question Miguelito.

    I also can't seem to find anything on them...does anybody know anything about Alexis Avi? The PM page says it has quite a few clients, and forthcoming books ....
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  3. #3
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Considering they're excited about a twelve-state distribution deal, I would at the very least wait until the books are out to see what sorts of publishers they're selling to.
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  4. #4
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    I'm in the process of doing a blog post that will focus in part on this agency and one other that has recently popped up on PM...I am doing some checking on the client/sales claims, and so far, either the authors can't be found or the books can't be found, or both. The agents also can't be found, apart from the PM listing (you would think that if an agent had 15 years of experience, as is claimed for Thomas Stean, it would be possible to find something about him online). Plenty to be wary of here.

    - Victoria

  5. #5
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
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    A) A mod should change the thread title to "Alexis Avi."

    B) The info that agents put on their personal pages at PM isn't vetted by anyone on the staff.

    Quote Originally Posted by J.B. Kantt
    The PM page says it has quite a few clients, and forthcoming books ....


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  6. #6
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    Why do they keep spelling "mystery" as "mistery"?

    On the PM page, they also ask for ideas--twice. If you send them an idea they like, does that make you a client?
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by IceCreamEmpress View Post

    B) The info that agents put on their personal pages at PM isn't vetted by anyone on the staff.
    Ooh...thanks IceCreamEmpress, I actually had no idea; I thought PM staff confirmed everything that's posted there.
    J.B. Kantt


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  8. #8
    Filled with optimism. And scotch. Miguelito's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by victoriastrauss View Post
    I'm in the process of doing a blog post that will focus in part on this agency and one other that has recently popped up on PM...I am doing some checking on the client/sales claims, and so far, either the authors can't be found or the books can't be found, or both. The agents also can't be found, apart from the PM listing (you would think that if an agent had 15 years of experience, as is claimed for Thomas Stean, it would be possible to find something about him online). Plenty to be wary of here.

    - Victoria
    Thanks. My thoughts exactly.

  9. #9
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    We take it as an article of faith that an active agent leaves footprints. It's increasingly rare for an individual of any sort to leave no footprints that Google can detect. For that many of them to leave no trace is a very odd thing.

    It's also seriously out of character for supposed agents to supposedly have clients and properties and deals they're excited about, but not mention any specifics.

    I'd also like to know what the bleep a twelve-state distribution deal might be, because I have a whole string of reasons why that sounds strange. Just to make sure, though, I consulted someone I've known for many years who's a senior editor at a trade publishing house. He said:
    "A twelve-state distribution deal? That's certainly language that sets off my 'You have no @#$%! idea what you're talking about' alarms. ... I like to be careful, so let's say I don't deny the possibility that there's some wacky deal out there like that in academic or specialty publishing. Or maybe they've got some kind of deal that involves a limited number of outlets, but they think it sounds better to refer to it as 'a twelve-state distribution deal.' ... But I'm really reaching. What I really think is that it sounds like b*llsh*t. I don't guarantee that I'm right. ... And since when do agents make distribution deals?"
    Transcription may be approximate; he talks fast. But you get the idea.
    Last edited by HapiSofi; 03-05-2012 at 06:07 AM.
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  10. #10
    but appreciated anyway... Unimportant's Avatar
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    There may be stealth agents, but stealth authors? I don't know any author who doesn't, upon selling a book to a publisher, create a webpage and blog about their forthcoming book.

    The Publishers Marketplace page for Alexis Avi lists dozens of authors in the recent sales/forthcoming books section, but googling those authors comes up with nothing but the PM page.

    Also, why is there a stockphoto image of a happy dark-haired lady holding a piggybank on the Alexis Avi PM page?

  11. #11
    Caped Codder jaksen's Avatar
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    If you search for alexis.avi you get dozens of hits, but most are of torrents or downloads. (For music, mostly illegal.)

    Alexis.avi

    Some of the names mentioned are rare names or if you do a 'how-many-of-me' thing you come up with one person in all of Canada and the US. (And that one or few persons are not literary agents.)

    If this isn't a hoax pulled by some kids, then I apologize and will edit or delete this post.
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  12. #12
    I'm not a Dr., I'm a baseball fan. DoctorK's Avatar
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    .avi is a file extension for videos encoded for Windows.

    WIP: The Unit Moving Target, a contemporary MG mystery/thriller.



  13. #13
    Caped Codder jaksen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DoctorK View Post
    .avi is a file extension for videos encoded for Windows.
    Yes, I know that. So alexis.avi turns up torrents, and audio-video files.

    Not saying it couldn't be a real person. And the agency could have several agents with unusual/rare names. A search of the authors being represented by this agency, however, didn't turn up any books, author's websites, or similar. A lot of those names are unusual, too.
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  14. #14
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
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    Yes. None of the agents or authors listed have Facebook pages. Not a one.

    So either this agency doesn't really exist, or it's run by people who are totally crap at social media. In either case, not a good idea to submit anything to them.


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    I'd also like to know what a "clients-published author" is. Is that someone who's published by a company you got your clients to collectively set up?

    (Okay, I assume the dash should've been a slash, indicating that the clients are also published authors, but the concept amuses me.)

    In my opinion, BOOKS ARE NOT PRODUCTS, but... wonderful creations in search of respect, attention and the right chance to become "something more"... something important.
    This concerns me. Honestly, anything to the tune of giving a book "the chance it deserves" concerns me. Also, imho, books are products. They're products we love and care about, and we put blood, sweat, and tears into making them, but they're still products.

    (What? No one else tried sprinkling their manuscript with their own tears for good luck before a submission? I must be weird.)
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  16. #16
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Here's my blog post.

    It looks to me--and mind you, I have no proof of this, just a hunch based on certain similarities--as if Alexis Avi may be associated with, or even the same as, another clueless agent listing that popped up recently on PM: Linda Cooper of Literary House.

    - Victoria

  17. #17
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    The PM listings for Linda Cooper and Alexis Avi have changed a little--it's now clear that the two listings are for the same agency.

    The agency's website (cheesy music alert) now provides a list of supposed clients--most of these claims are almost certainly false (Terry Pratchett--ya think?)

    "Alexis" posted two comments on my blog post (scroll down to the bottom) that make the case better than I ever could for avoiding his or her agency.

    ETA: Alexis is also claiming his or her agency is a member of the Association of Authors' Agents. Was I surprised not to find Alexis on the AAA membership list? Uh...no. I've written to let them know.

    - Victoria
    Last edited by victoriastrauss; 03-22-2012 at 03:32 AM.

  18. #18
    practical experience, FTW eternalised's Avatar
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    *sarcasm*

    This is the best agency ever! Not only did they sign up Terry Pratchett, they also signed up LJ Smith, Licia Troisi (an Italian author, one of my favorites) and Carlos Zafon.

    Oh, and they also sound the screenplay for "National Treasure" and "Carriers".

    Oh, and this stands in capital font on their website:

    139,99 $ for publishing contract
    So they want me to and submit my work, and buy a contract for $139. Somehow I'm unimpressed.

    I also doubt that any of the authors mentioned above would pay a dime to have their work published, considering they're already bestselling authors and all that.
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  19. #19
    Fighting off ninja plot bunnies saphirablue84's Avatar
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    Wow! I'm almost certain after everything LJ Smith's been through lately that she'd LOVE to know that she's a "best client" of this sham. Some people have their nerve.

    Also, cheesy music indeed! One look at the website sent red flags shooting up for me. I hope it'll do the same for others who stumble across it.

  20. #20
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    Coda: As Victoria mentions in the comments to her blog post, the website was quickly stripped, then changed into Italian touting "agencia Antonia Masi". The website is now gone, leaving us with a FB page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Agenzi...70049519779616

    Just for fun, here's the blurb at the bottom as rendered by Google Translate:

    We are three literary agents honest (supported by an extensive network of other assistants and literary agents, television, film, advertising), which are now quite tired of seeing some authors, even talented, blatantly taken around by the "system" ... Examples: waiting time, only for the careful reading of a novel, often equal to two months clearly lost ... offensive to the literary creations of newcomers without a name already known or famous television ... costs exaggerated pretend to be allocated costs "plausible" (in fact there are many agencies that look out evaluation forms to "little" and then, however, no promises of publication, the author urged to review fee, a service of editing, if necessary, and always pay ... Result? They spend about 600 euro excluding VAT, if all goes well, not at all! Other agencies still rather start from € 600 for a single evaluation board ... And, at the end with the same uncertainties related to the publication!).

    To help these authors and do everything possible to support them nell'irto path that eventually leads to publication, we joined forces and international experiences:

    - Antonia Masi is a literary agent greedy of novels "of life" (raw and love stories that tell of slices of real existence or true. Realism to the nth degree ... or ... unlikely combination of realism and tantalizing fantasy) , thriller complicated (convoluted puzzles) and series literary paranormal, romance or mystery-romance-fantasy. It has been carefully designed also other texts (cooking, science, technology, arts and entertainment, sports, gossip);
    ICAO
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  21. #21
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by victoriastrauss View Post
    The PM listings for Linda Cooper and Alexis Avi have changed a little--it's now clear that the two listings are for the same agency.

    The agency's website (cheesy music alert) now provides a list of supposed clients--most of these claims are almost certainly false (Terry Pratchett--ya think?)


    - Victoria
    Christopher Schelling at Selectric Artists reps Pratchett, and did at the time that was written (obviously we all knew that was a falsehood anyway, just mentioning it).
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