AW Amazon Store

If this site is helpful to you,
Please consider a voluntary subscription to defray ongoing expenses.


 

Welcome to the AbsoluteWrite Water Cooler! Please read The Newbie Guide To Absolute Write

Results 1 to 11 of 11

Thread: Sparks Literary Consultants (formerly Johanna M. Bates Lit. Consultants)

  1. #1
    khm42269
    Guest

    Sparks Literary Consultants (formerly Johanna M. Bates Lit. Consultants)

    Hi Folks,

    I just wanted to warn everyone about the above agency. A member at my website had the unfortunate experience of e-mailing them asking about representation and received an e-mail back asking for $1,000. This fee was for the "assessment of intellectual property" as well as covering a charge for them to make editorial comments, although the depth of editorial content was not described or promised.

    I have not seen anything regarding this on P&E, or anywhere else that I was able to find, so I apologize if this is already well known. It definitely wasn't to me.

    Thanks!

    Kris

  2. #2
    I heart Malamutes! :-) JerseyGirl1962's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Waaay West of NYC
    Posts
    861
    An example from their website:

    "As consultants and agents, we are able to lead you through the necessary steps to make publishing and self-publishing a success."

    And they have...testimonials...but none of them are attributed.

    ~Nancy
    Screw the new blog, I've resurrected my old blog: Writerly Stuff.

    I twit, therefore I am?

    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work. ~Thomas Edison

    It took me fifteen years to discover that I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous. ~Robert Benchley

  3. #3
    Hey, that's my bike! ghost's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    between ponds
    Posts
    375
    Quote Originally Posted by JerseyGirl1962 View Post
    An example from their website:

    And they have...testimonials...but none of them are attributed.

    ~Nancy

    There are no names to go along with those testimonials either. Gotta like that.

    My fav quote from their website "Because we know our business, we can warn you of industry pitfalls and help you to steer clear of organizations that may not have your best interests in mind."

  4. #4
    I'm super! Thanks for asking Siddow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    GA
    Posts
    2,719
    Our manuscript evaluation service involves a fee based on The Writers' Union of Canada tarrif:

    $125.00 for the first 10 pages,
    $2.00 for each page thereafter.
    Does anyone know what the heck this means? WTF is a tarrif?
    Success is not the result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.--
    Reggie Leach

    A picture is worth a thousand words, but it uses up three thousand times the memory.



  5. #5
    I'm super! Thanks for asking Siddow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    GA
    Posts
    2,719
    From their About Us page:

    Anne Bougie, Literary Agent

    Anne Bougie was born in Calgary, Alberta in 1976 and has lived there all her life. In 1996, she obtained a diploma in commercial baking from The Southern Alberta Institute of Technology and then began studying English, a subject she had always excelled in. The booming economy of Calgary placed her into a career segue. She co-owned a very successful restaurant starting in 1997. Throughout this development, Anne continued with her first love--writing. She wrote her first novel and it was quickly picked up by the agency that she now works for. She has sold the burgeoning business and now concentrates on writing and contracting for Johanna M. Bates Literary Consultants, Inc. Anne is also the vice president of 4th Floor Press, Inc.
    Which is a self-publisher:

    http://www.4thfloorpress.com/
    Success is not the result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.--
    Reggie Leach

    A picture is worth a thousand words, but it uses up three thousand times the memory.



  6. #6
    khm42269
    Guest
    What really irks me is that since they call themselves "consultants" instead of "agents", they feel justified in charging what is, essentially, an up-front reading fee, and a pretty hefty one at that.

  7. #7
    And now, back to Plodding! Duncan J Macdonald's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    1,869
    Quote Originally Posted by Siddow View Post
    Does anyone know what the heck this means? WTF is a tarrif?
    Possibly a misspelling of 'tariff'
    From Dictionary.com:

    tar·iff
    –noun
    1. an official list or table showing the duties or customs imposed by a government on imports or exports.
    2. the schedule or system of duties so imposed.
    3. any duty or rate of duty in such a list or schedule.
    4. any table of charges, as of a railroad, bus line, etc.
    5. bill; cost; charge. –verb (used with object)
    6. to subject to a tariff.
    7. to put a valuation on according to a tariff.
    R/
    Hamster #164

  8. #8
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Far from the madding crowd
    Posts
    6,670
    Quote Originally Posted by Siddow View Post
    Does anyone know what the heck this means? WTF is a tarrif?
    In this case, a reading fee.

    Ms. Bates gives her fee a misleading gloss of respectability by invoking the Writers' Union of Canada, and implying that her "tariff" is some kind of standard or accepted charge made to writers. What she's actually referencing is the WUC's fee for its manuscript evaluation service, which doesn't call itself a tariff at all.

    - Victoria

  9. #9
    practical experience, FTW
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Toronto
    Posts
    708
    Just wanted to update this to say that someone I know paid an extraordinary amount of money (thousands and thousands of dollars) to this woman and her agency. Be warned.

  10. #10
    Professor of applied misanthropy Drachen Jager's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Vancouver
    Posts
    16,330
    I sent them a query a while back by accident (I thought they were legit).

    A five page e-mail showed up in my inbox within minutes. Among other things it said that I could not re-publish anything that was in the e-mail on the internet (ha ha ISPs give anonymity, unless there's a warrant or court order, here so good luck with that one!). I'm not quite sure of the legal standing of such things but I suspect they wouldn't have a leg to stand on and it's just a scare tactic because they don't want their business practices made public.

    Anyhow, it still stands, $125 for the first 10 pages $2 for each page after. Plus you have to sign off their huge waiver (most of which is just them making excuses for why you should pay the outrageous fee).

    They also say that IF they pick you up they'll only charge 15% domestic and 20% international fees. Then it goes on to say that many US agencies charge 40-50% (I've never seen any that charge that much, I suppose one or two might).

    Total BS agency.

    The best line from the e-mail;

    "We take the retainer for reading up front as some clients get very angry at what we have to say about their work."

  11. #11
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Coastal Desert
    Posts
    13,105
    Is now Sparks Literary Consultants: http://www.sparkslit.com/
    ICAO
    ---------

    Censorship always defeats its own purpose, for it creates in the end the kind of society that is incapable of exercising real discretion. -- Henry Steele Commager
    Achievers strive for excellence. Perfectionists drive themselves to extinction. -- A Grapple A Day
    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. -- Charles DeSecondat

    II 2016: 2017:

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Custom Search