The AW Amazon Store
Buy books by AWers

 

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

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 35

Thread: [Agency] WriteHigh (Monique Raphel High)

  1. #1
    Writting broad batgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Vancouver Island
    Posts
    1,678

    [Agency] WriteHigh (Monique Raphel High)

    I checked the Index and couldn't find this agency, so I thought I'd ask. Their Publishers Marketplace listing is here, and their website is:
    http://www.writehigh.com/
    P&E lists with a $ but asks if anyone knows more about them.

    What's confusing me is what exactly they are. The website calls them "a full-service management firm for authors". PM lists them as agents.
    Their client list includes Jill Smolinski (published by St. Martin's and Random House) but says Smolinski's representation is Kirsten Manges Literary Management. Kimberly Greene (Usborne) is represented by Wade & Doherty. Jonathan Fong (Watson & Guptill) is represented by East/West Agency.
    Virginia Hoyt (unpublished) is represented by WriteHigh. Lisa Jones Johnson (published by Genesis Press, problems mentioned here) is represented by WriteHigh. Also represented by WriteHigh is Gilles Gallimard, published by an imprint he started in his family's famous publishing house.

    Here's how WriteHigh describes its process:

    We are a rare agency with our own in-house PR team—one with star credentials. Their media kits prove to editors that our clients have that necessary Platform. Our PR team is prepared to send our clients on interviews and television after the book is out. And Joel Coler, who headed Twentieth Century Fox Advertising and Publicity for 27 years, can also send client projects to producers.
    If your book is the type that is right for film, TV or video, we will show it to producers, or, if we feel that we need to partner with a film agency, we will do that on your behalf.
    Everyone at WriteHigh is involved in the selling of your book:
    Monique and Susan carefully earmark and select which editors are most likely to be interested in your project, and approach them.
    In New York, Monique and Peter pay a call on these editors and pitch your project.
    Peter follows up in person in New York and the East Coast vicinity, and Monique and Susan follow up by telephone and email—frequently, and with passion.
    Our European agent takes your project and pitches it abroad at the various international book fairs she regularly and assiduously attends: The London Book Fair, the Frankfurt Book Fair, the Salon du Livre in Paris, and various cities where she travels and pitches projects, from Venice to Bangkok.
    Monique attends the BEA (Book Expo America, the US Book Fair, which occurs every year in a different city) each year.
    The Boys and Linda, YOUR PR Team, remains on its toes, visualizing opportunities to hype your project.
    Ben Pesta, the WriteHigh intellectual properties attorney, crafts contracts and verifies that your interests are always protected. He is available to answer any question and vet any legal document that comes your way. Do not enter into any agreement without consulting him!
    Along with the usual team are the professionals that Monique can summon to help you reach publishing stardom. If you are too shy to be comfortable fielding a television interview, we will send you to Media-Savvy for a day’s media coaching. Don’t worry, though… one of us will be there to hold your hand. WriteHigh is a comprehensive, team operation that is meant to always, always hold a writer’s hand. It was born from Monique’s desire to help her fellow writers reach publication with joy, a minimum of anxiety, and a sense of mentorship that is so often lacking in what otherwise is a harsh business. Imagine a soft, downy pillowcase, and your head propped up. That is the WriteHigh Literary Agency. We make getting published a softer experience.

    Is this an agency, or a book packager, or just quirky? Does anyone have personal experience?
    -Barbara
    will crit for rep points
    "Your commas are pretty good." TNH
    okay, I have a blog



  2. #2
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    They look like they're trying to adapt the "artist management" model of the music industry in the literary field.

    To be honest, I would be doubtful about the PR savvy of anyone who thinks that "WriteHigh" is a good name for anything. Other than a customized line of smoking paraphernalia, that is.

  3. #3
    Writting broad batgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Vancouver Island
    Posts
    1,678
    It's not a name that rolls off the tongue, either. But I guess it's named after her. She does seem to have been a successful author. Maybe she started with editing and decided to take it to the next step? That's almost what the description sounds like.

    I found a bio from a writers' conference (Great Writers at Barnard) in 2005 that doesn't mention agenting, only 'coaching':
    CANCELLED Monique Raphel High '69 has published six novels: The Four Winds of Heaven (a roman à clef based on her own grandmother's life), Encore, The Keeper of the Walls, Thy Father's House, The Eleventh Year and Between Two Worlds as well as a nonfiction book. She is the founder of WriteHigh, a literary management firm with an international clientele and offices in London and Paris. Before launching the firm in 1997, she taught at the UCLA Extension Writers Program and now serves as writing coach, editor and teacher through her website, WriteHigh.com . A Parisian who lives in Los Angeles, High is the granddaughter of a Russian Baroness, Sofia Sara de Gunzburg. High was brought up in Paris, Rome and Amsterdam in a literary milieu--her mother, Dina Raphel, was one of the agents of Irwin Shaw and James Jones. She was also a movie brat, as her father, David Raphel, was in the film business. She is fluent in French, Spanish, Rumanian and Italian.

    Here's another description, from a section headed 'Publishing Resources', presumably provided by Monique Raphel High herself: "
    Monique Raphel High, author and writing coach/manager, helps authors create market-ready products, test them in reader focus groups, package their work and target specific agents. www.writehigh.com"

    A 2005 ad for an intern position has a bit more, suggesting that they 'work with agents' rather than being agents:
    Monique Raphel High (Barnard 1969) owns WRITEHIGH, a company that manages writers of all genres and types. Though their clients are now all over the United States and many other nations, WRITEHIGH is in Beverly Hills and most of their writers are there. Ms. High is herself an author of novels and nonfiction, and began as a writing instructor, branching off into coaching writers, obtaining agents for them, giving them full editorial services. Now, she and her assistant, Susan Chin, help with publicity campaigns, etc. They have recently opened a branch office in London and one in Paris, and work with over thirty literary agents and editors, here and abroad. Our authors, among them the Consul-General in Athens, write how-to books, chick-lit fiction, epic novels, etc. Ms. High's husband, Ben Pesta, is the company attorney and handles all contracts."

    I'm trying to think of ways in which this might not be a conflict. Maybe I just don't know enough about publishing?

    Oho!
    An October blog entry about High responding to an older blog entry (describing her as a book doctor) with an angry diatribe. Diatribe is quoted. Supportive authors appear to testify about WriteHigh's general wonderfulness.
    Can we expect drama to come here?
    -Barbara

    will crit for rep points
    "Your commas are pretty good." TNH
    okay, I have a blog



  4. #4
    Writting broad batgirl's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Vancouver Island
    Posts
    1,678
    So, as far as I can figure out from their website, their main business is coaching hopeful writers. You can 'sign on for coaching' with Monique, and tailor a course(?) whether by face-to-face, email, or phone. No mention of the price range for this program yet.
    Monique and her team say they can 'handle any sort of fiction', and nonfiction except technical topics. I'm not quite sure whether this is all coaching or includes editing.
    Here's where it gets interesting:


    When the manuscript is finished, Monique and her associate, Susan Chin, give it a thorough edit. After the edit, they will ask whether you are interested in a Target Reader review. Monique has created a service called “Frank in Indiana” (you may read about it only if you are a client; it is located in the “CLIENT ACCESS” tab), composed of every possible target reader (moms, pops, lawyers, teenagers, secretaries, business executives, you name it!). The absolute qualification for her target readers is that they can’t be connected to the publishing world. You thus receive, as far as possible, a consumer’s-eye view of your work. Often, the detailed review leads to yet another set of revisions. The target reader review can be extremely helpful. It is of course completely optional. Monique receives absolutely no compensation (or “kickback”) from “Frank in Indiana.” Payment is $0.40 per page of reading, and the target reader submits a written review.

    Monique and Susan will tell you when your book is ready to be presented to an agent. You may or may not ask the WriteHigh Literary Agency to represent you. WriteHigh will never pressure a client to do this. You are free to find any agent you desire. Management clients, however, pay for WriteHigh services as stated in their WriteHigh Management (not Agency) contracts—by the hour, or by the project.
    They say the coaching/management is distinct from the agenting, but the distinction seems to lie in 'will never pressure a client'.
    For the agency side, they state that they don't charge a reading fee, and that if they are interested in repping you, they will provide, without charge, a review letter that may suggest changes.
    Then it gets interesting again, with the PR service. I'm not sure whether this is supposed to come in before or after a book is accepted for publication:

    We work in cooperation with a Public Relations firm. The PR team, Jerry Pam, Joel Coler and Linda Coler, are extremely experienced. When you’re ready, they can help you build your platform and enhance your public profile. The PR team is not part of our corporation. The client pays them directly. As with “Frank in Indiana,” WriteHigh does not receive remuneration or “kickbacks” from the PR firm. Monique and her staff members offer the PR firm to their clients as an alternative and a benefit, but there is no pressure on anyone to use their services. (The PUBLICITY tab, only offered to clients of the firm under the CLIENT ACCESS tab, offers other publicity options as well or in conjunction to the WriteHigh PR Team.)
    For some reason, the discussion of editing comes after the discussion of publicity, so I'm preserving that order. Editing is mentioned only in the Agenting description, presumably because someone coached by Ms. High would know how to edit themselves.

    If we advise you to get a copy editor, you will have three choices:
    • To bring in an editor of your choice.
    • To ask Monique for her advice; there are good editors listed on this website (again, they are listed under CLIENT ACCESS).
    • To ask her and Susan to edit the manuscript. The choice is entirely yours. Again, no pressure is applied to you in this direction; the choice is yours, and you should explore all options.
    WriteHigh does NOT want you to spend money. But a manuscript full of comma splices, repeated vocabulary words, misplaced modifiers, etc., looks as bad as uncombed hair. It’s better to find a professional to fix what you obviously have not been able to figure out.
    I'm not suggesting a scam. But it does look as if they've expanded beyond their area of expertise, and I'm very doubtful that they'd be effective agents. They might be dandy book doctors, though again I'd question whether anyone could coach and edit "literary fiction, mainstream/contemporary adult fiction, as well as all manner of genre fiction: romance, Regency, mystery, thriller, historical saga, horror, fantasy, science fiction, satire, Young Adult, ‘tween, and (though more rarely) children's literature" adequately, given that every genre has specialised conventions.
    And I'd suggest that writers think long and hard before paying forty cents a page for the opinions of average readers.
    -Barbara
    will crit for rep points
    "Your commas are pretty good." TNH
    okay, I have a blog



  5. #5
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    Quote Originally Posted by batgirl View Post
    For some reason, the discussion of editing comes after the discussion of publicity, so I'm preserving that order.
    I would suggest that order reveals something about the relative importance Ms. High et al. place on these activities.

    I'm not suggesting a scam. But it does look as if they've expanded beyond their area of expertise, and I'm very doubtful that they'd be effective agents.
    I think this is a very sound assessment, and very diplomatically worded.

    My own less-diplomatic assessment is that they want to be to writers what Phil Spector was to singers back in the day (or what boy band Svengali Lou Pearlman was more recently).

  6. #6
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3

    WriteHigh deserves better

    I have watched this string about WriteHigh with some dismay, and decided I should finally post another perspective. I am a current client. I have only wonderful things to say about Monique High and her team at WriteHigh. Prior to coming to them, I had experience with other literary agents, attorneys and publicists; I can say without hesitation that nobody has come close to the quality and dedication I find in Monique’s group. I am selling a particularly difficult project, Beyond Cosmic Dice: Moral Life in a Random World, which tackles the issue of morality, religion and the future of humanity. WriteHigh actually “gets it” and is marketing the project to carefully selected publishers based on a deep understanding of what the book is really about. Through their contacts, and constant encouragement, I have also in initiated a successful media campaign to prove to potential publishers that I can get on radio and TV to sell my book once published (my media appearances are listed and available on my website, www.jeffschweitzer.com if somebody wishes to verify my claim).

    I first engaged Monique as a writing coach. In that capacity, she charged me for her time, at a rate well established beforehand. She always charged me for fewer hours than I know she in fact worked. I then decided to engage her has my literary agent, and from that time forward, she has never charged me a single cent for editing. In fact, I have not paid her a penny for any services since hiring her as my agent.

    To enhance my media efforts, Monique referred me to two agencies, Joel Coler & Friends and Jacquie Jordan, Inc. I am working with both now. Again, you can see ther result on the Media page of my website. Monique earns nothing from my relationship with those media companies.

    I don't see where the animosity and hostility are coming from about Monique or her agency. I have truly had nothing but a positive experience with her and her staff. I rarely get involved with these types of threads, but I thought this time there was too much misinformation being disseminated. Monique is getting a bad rap here. I think she is great. That is my two cents worth.

  7. #7
    Preditors & Editors Requiescat In Pace DaveKuzminski's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    5,033
    Does she charge you for representation?
    When it comes to PA, the royalty check and the reality check arrive in the same envelope.

    Remember to be kind to writers who step in PA. They really don't know how bad it smells.

    The difference between PA and WLA? None. Both have the stench of dead and dying books emanating from their doorways.


  8. #8
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Here and there
    Posts
    3,306
    Hi, Jeff, and welcome to AW!

    Schweitzer:
    I have watched this string about WriteHigh with some dismay, and decided I should finally post another perspective.
    I don't think anyone here has problems with hearing positive things about an agency, although you'll probably find that some of us will have follow-up questions.

    Schweitzer:
    Through their contacts, and constant encouragement, I have also in initiated a successful media campaign to prove to potential publishers that I can get on radio and TV to sell my book once published
    One of the Americans will have to tell me if this is usual in the US for non-fiction. I know that non-fiction publishers usually want evidence of a platform before taking on a book, but I don't know whether media exposure is always deemed sufficient.

    Jeff, are you able to tell us whether you've had to spend any money on your media campaign?

    Schweitzer:
    To enhance my media efforts, Monique referred me to two agencies, Joel Coler & Friends and Jacquie Jordan, Inc. I am working with both now. Again, you can see ther result on the Media page of my website. Monique earns nothing from my relationship with those media companies.
    I'm a little confused about something on the website, because Joel Coler is described on one-page as being part of WriteHigh's in-house PR team, but it seems from what you're saying that it's actually a separate agency.

    From the WriteHigh website:
    Joel and Linda, YOUR PR Team, remains on its toes, visualizing opportunities to hype your project.

    We are a rare agency with our own in-house PR team—one with star credentials. Their media kits prove to editors that our clients have that necessary Platform. Our PR team is prepared to send our clients on interviews and television after the book is out. And Joel Coler, who headed Twentieth Century Fox Advertising and Publicity for over 25 years, can also send client projects to producers.
    Are you able to tell us whether you had to pay anything to Joel Coler & Friends and Jacquie Jordan, Inc for their services? Also, have you had a specific written undertaking from Monique that WriteHigh doesn't earn anything by referring you on to them?

    Schweitzer:
    I don't see where the animosity and hostility are coming from about Monique or her agency.
    I'm not sure why you think there's animosity and/or hostility in the previous posts here (the last one of which was posted on 28 November 2007, so the discussion was dead until you decided to resurrect it). Most people have been asking for details of personal experience (which you've been able to provide) and asking questions.

    The purpose of the Forum is to give people a chance to ask questions about agencies and discuss experiences.

    MM

  9. #9
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3
    Wow, lots of questions. I'll answer them one by one:

    A media platform is necessary but not sufficient. I found that I first had to prove my ability to get on TV and radio before any publisher would even consider my book proposal; but once past that barrier, the normal filtering process happens.

    Concerning Joel Coler & Friends: the WriteHigh website describes the relationship between Joel and Monique accurately, but I can add a few clarifications based on my own experience. Due to the many referrals sent by Monique to Joel, he charges a lower fee for clients from WriteHigh. The client benefits from this (as I did), but Monique has no financial stake at all -- just a service to her clients in getting them a lower fee on their behalf. Joel also works with Monique to make sure the platform he builds is consistent with her understanding of the book and how best to market the project. So they work together, but neither makes money from the other. They are completely separate, but work in a coordinated way on behalf of their clients. The client (including me) pays them separately. So I can say clearly and unambiguously that Monique earns no money from the work Joel does, and vice-versa.

    Yes, I pay Joel Coler & Friends and Jacquie Jordan, Inc. for their services in developing my media platform. (They too are completely separate entities). It is rather expensive in fact, but I really believe I get my money's worth. This is not an advertisement for me, but to get an example of what I mean, if you go to my Media page on my website, you can check out my Press Kit, which is a direct result of Jacquie Jordan's efforts.

    I apologize if I misunderstood the tone of the earlier posts. I'll be more careful about that in the future.

    If I missed answering any questions, please let me know.

  10. #10
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    Quote Originally Posted by Schweitzer View Post
    I apologize if I misunderstood the tone of the earlier posts. I'll be more careful about that in the future.
    I think both batgirl and I found some of the website text (as it was then) to be confusing or oddly worded. That is certainly not to be confused with "animosity" or "hostility", though.

    Thanks so much for sharing your own experience. That is very useful data for people who might be interested in working with WriteHigh.

  11. #11
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3
    I'm one of WriteHigh's published authors. My name is Kimberly Greene. The comments here are stunningly harsh and are conjecture getting twisted to the point that other's believe it to be fact. Monique helped me take a messy little self-published story and use it to get an international book agent, a great book deal, and a novel that has now been published in three languages. The sequel to that novel is launching this September. I will happily swear on a stack of whatever holy book you want that NONE of this would have happened without Monique's guidance, assistance, services, support, and coaching. This is not false modesty; I'm a good writer, not a great one. Monique helped me see holes in my stories. Mind you, I fixed the problems, but Monique spotted them before she would allow the manuscript to be shopped. You get one shot with most editors. Why would you not want to have someone with an eagle eye and "street cred" in the publishing world give you advice before you step out onto that stage?

    Now that WriteHigh has branched into agenting, Monique, acting as my US agent with the blessing of my British representation, has already gotten my new proposal into the hands of several editors at big name publishers. It is genuinely hurtful to see snarky assumptions about a woman I respect beyond words. Did WriteHigh charge for editing my inital manuscripts? Yes- and that was because I needed those first "calling cards" to be as clean as possible so an editor wouldn't be turned off my sloppy syntax or silly punctuation stuff that none of us has truly thought about since seventh grade (see why I need an editor- I do like to run on). Does the agency charge for agenting? Oh my stars- NO! WriteHigh is 100% professional and Monique's standards and business ethics are untouchable. Please- to anyone genuinelly curious, I would be happy to answer questions as well as Schweitzer if they are genine inquiries, but if your intention is simply to snipe and try to paint the lovely Monique and her agency as anything other than what they are- first class and genuine- please don't. Between writing and teaching, I'm a new mom and close to losing what few marbles I started out with in this world.

    Oh- and I do not use any of the other people she recommends. I might in the future- but for now, I haven't needed them and there has been no problem or weirdness about that.

    Sincerely,

    Kimberly Greene
    author, My Sister's a Pop Star and the about-to-be-published I'm So Not a Pop Star
    Last edited by Doc_Greene; 07-25-2008 at 05:34 AM.

  12. #12
    Tired and Disillusioned Momento Mori's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Here and there
    Posts
    3,306
    Hi, Kimberly and welcome to AW! Very many congratulations on your book deal and best of luck for the sequel launch in September.

    Doc_Greene:
    The comments here are stunningly harsh and are conjecture getting twisted to the point that other's believe it to be fact.

    <SNIP>

    if your intention is simply to snipe and try to paint the lovely Monique and her agency as anything other than what they are- first class and genuine- please don't.
    As I said to Jeff (who you will see has also come here in support of Write High and who has been able to clarify some points and answer a few questions), the purpose of the Forum is to give people a chance to ask questions about agencies and discuss experiences. The people who posted earlier in the thread had questions that came from having viewed the website and were asking for what people thought and whether anyone had personal experience. The people who post here share information and are able to talk about what the usual industry position is.

    Unfortunately, there are a lot of clueless agents and publishers out there (who have good intentions but can't deliver) as well as scammers, so places like this and P&E exist to try and help people who are serious about writing and trying to get published to avoid getting caught in those sandtraps.

    Jeff, many thanks for answering those questions. I hope you and Kimberly stick around.

    MM

  13. #13
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Posts
    25
    [quote=Doc_Greene;2586832]Did WriteHigh charge for editing my inital manuscripts? Yes-

    It is considered a questionable practice for a literary agent to be involved in a paid editing service. Ms. High may be a brilliant editor, but she has no track record of sales to publishing houses that require agented submissions. Put those two together, and authors begin to wonder if they should seek representation from her.

  14. #14
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc_Greene View Post
    I'm one of WriteHigh's published authors. My name is Kimberly Greene. The comments here are stunningly harsh
    What on Earth are you talking about?

    Seriously, this is a bizarre reaction to two people's comments on clumsy and confusing wording on a website.

    Again, thanks for sharing your positive experiences with WriteHigh. That's useful information.

    Having two people write in as many days in response to a thread that was almost a year old strikes me as a remarkable coincidence, though.

  15. #15
    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Far from the madding crowd
    Posts
    6,668
    Quote Originally Posted by Schweitzer View Post
    Through their contacts, and constant encouragement, I have also in initiated a successful media campaign to prove to potential publishers that I can get on radio and TV to sell my book once published
    Honestly, this sounds like very risky business to me. I also wonder whether a publisher will consider this to be a platform, since I can't see how it differs from what could be accomplished if you hired a publicist after the book had been contracted. In the latter instance, though, you'd have a book to promote and would have a reasonable expectation of getting a return on your investment. As it is, it seems like an expensive gamble that might leave you considerably out of pocket and deliver little benefit.

    - Victoria

  16. #16
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3
    Look, if you don't "like" the way something sounds or feels- don't go there. Before I found WriteHigh, I met with lots of people who all claimed they could help me get published. I walked away from them. Why? Nothing concrete- just bad vibes. I'm sure other folks chose those people; there's a reason why there are 31 flavors, yes?

    I'm not trying to get anyone to send their stuff to Monique! Last I heard, they were not accepting any new authors anyway. I'm stepping up to support someone who supported me; I have no agenda beyond that. In fact, I feel pretty rotten about all this because I mentioned to Monique that I'd been Googling my book and found all kinds of cute things young girls had said about it. So then, I encouraged her to Google her own name and she came back to me saying that she'd found some unpleasant blog posts about her. I checked for myself and found the postings here; I'm simply giving you all my two cents as an "embed". See- I feel responsible for someone I like and respect having her feelings hurt. Please- if you don't like what you see with WriteHigh and MRH, then ignore it and move onto something that you do find interesting and attractive. Please don't post anymore negative stuff based upon the wording of a website or someone's background.

    Happy Friday,

    KG
    Last edited by Doc_Greene; 07-26-2008 at 01:51 AM. Reason: I'm a doofus who can't spell correctly (sigh).

  17. #17
    I grow my own catnip JulieB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Deep in the heart o' Texas
    Posts
    2,401
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc_Greene View Post
    Look, if you don't "like" the way something sounds or feels- don't go there. Before I found WriteHigh, I met with lots of people who all claimed they could help me get published. I walked away from them. Why? Nothing concrete- just bad vibes. I'm sure other folks chose those people; there's a reason why there are 31 flavors, yes?
    I'm glad it worked out for you.

    You might want to take the time to read some of the stickied threads in this area so you'll understand why some of the folks here are asking questions.

  18. #18
    The King and Queen of Cheese BenPanced's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    dunking doughnuts at Dunkin' Donuts
    Posts
    15,958
    Quote Originally Posted by Doc_Greene View Post
    Look, if you don't "like" the way something sounds or feels- don't go there. Before I found WriteHigh, I met with lots of people who all claimed they could help me get published. I walked away from them. Why? Nothing concrete- just bad vibes. I'm sure other folks chose those people; there's a reason why there are 31 flavors, yes?

    I'm not trying to get anyone to send their stuff to Monique! Last I heard, they were not accepting any new authors anyway. I'm stepping up to support someone who supported me; I have no agenda beyond that. In fact, I feel pretty rotten about all this because I mentioned to Monique that I'd been Googling my book and found all kinds of cute things young girls had said about it. So then, I encouraged her to Google her own name and she came back to me saying that she'd found some unpleasant blog posts about her. I checked for myself and found the postings here; I'm simply giving you all my two cents as an "embed". See- I feel responsible for someone I like and respect having her feelings hurt. Please- if you don't like what you see with WriteHigh and MRH, then ignore it and move onto something that you do find interesting and attractive. Please don't post anymore negative stuff based upon the wording of a website or someone's background.

    Happy Friday,

    KG
    What negative stuff? People are asking questions about a particular agency's practices, and people with general experience and knowledge about publishing looked at the information available, offering their opinions.

    And if I have questions about a business, you can certainly bet I'm not going to "just ignore it". Not asking questions when I have them and simply accepting something at face value is beyond foolish.

    They worked for you? Great. They might not work for the next person in line.

  19. #19
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    . Please don't post anymore negative stuff based upon the wording of a website or someone's background.
    I want to very politely tell you that you are being silly.

    A business's website is its public face. That is the way in which a business communicates its employees' core competencies and skill sets.

    When we look, in this forum, at different agents, publishers, literary consultants, and other writing-related businesses, we look at the information we have ready to hand and express our opinions.

    This is not a personality contest. This is people using the information they have to evaluate the potential strengths and weaknesses of a business. If people look at that information and find areas of concern, it's not because they're being mean--it's because, from their perspective, that's how they reacted to the information available.

    Now, your very positive personal experiences as a client of this business are new information, and information that is very useful to people evaluating WriteHigh.

    But the story you seem to be telling us about Ms. High's thin-skinned response to months-old critiques of her business website is also information. Complaining to your clients that people said mean things about you on the Internet--especially when nothing mean, or "harsh", or "hostile" was actually said--is not very professional.

    Again, thanks for sharing the information you intended to share. And thanks for sharing some information you didn't intend to share.

  20. #20
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3
    Victoria,
    I agree, developing a media platform before getting a publisher to take on your project involves risk; in my case though, perhaps because my subject is a little controversial, I heard consistently that I had to prove beforehand that I could get on radio and TV. I argued initially that such a request was absurd -- that I would only want to get on TV after the book was out to promote sales. But my arguments fell on deaf publisher ears, even if their logic is flawed.

    To Other Posting Authors,

    Concerning the other posts and WriteHigh; this is what I meant about an underlying hostility. Calling someone "unprofessional" and "thin-skinned" does not advance any debate, not to mention that the accusations are untrue. Also, the rather snide comment that an author posted information here that she did not intentionally wish to share is condescending, at least it comes across that way. I suspect the author is smart enough to know the implications of what she writes. Thanking someone when the thanks is insincere is typically not helpful.

    Concerning WriteHigh and the confusion on this site about her charges for editing and her role as literary agent. This is not rocket science. Let me repeat what I said earlier. I first hired Monique to help me edit my book proposal. She charged me for that, as was agreed ahead of time, and at a rate well established in advance. She did a fantastic job, and the proposal is 100% better due to her input. Then, later, separately, at a different and later time, when my book proposal was complete, I hired her, in a separate capacity, as my literary agent. From the moment I hired her as my agent, she has never charged me one cent for any of her services. What is so hard to understand about that? Where is the evil intent so implied in some of these posts? It would appear that some people posting here just want to make an issue where none exists. Let me repeat yet again. Once I hired Monique as my literary agent, she has never charged me one cent for any of her services. I am hoping that if I repeat this enough, it might sink in. But since these proclamations seem to have little effect, let me say this differently. As my literary agent, Monique has never charged me for any editing she has done for me. Never. Not one time. Can I make that any clearer? There is no basis to imply "questionable practices."

    I first hired her as my editor. I later hired her as my agent. The two never overlapped. There is no "questionable practice" here other than in the mind of the accuser.

    I get the whiff here of something personal against Monique rather than the usual and legitimate concerns all authors should have when contacting an editor or agent. I am going to sign off. I’ve said my piece. Monique is honorable, honest and decent. She has treated me well from beginning to end. She has always acted professionally. She has always acted with great integrity. That is all I have to say.
    Last edited by Schweitzer; 07-26-2008 at 05:57 AM.

  21. #21
    Just a guy with a pen & a delusion Mr. Anonymous's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    Schweitzer - I do agree with you that some of the comments made in this thread or in similar ones can be interpreted as harsh. And the criteria I use to determine that is fairly simple. I know that if I read the above comments in regards to my own literary agency/site, I would be a little offended.

    However, Schweitzer, you in turn must understand that there are countless disreputable and dishonest agents and publishers out there. Even more are well intentioned but clueless. As a result, many posters here will immediately call an agency or agent out on anything that gives them a bad feeling. While such preemptive judgment hardly seems fair, especially considering that it has the potential to dissuade prospective clients, I think you can also see why it is necessary.

    Please take a look at some of the other threads here. In a lot of them, I can honestly say I feel that some of the posters were overly harsh/critical. WriterHigh is really not a special case, and certainly nobody has any sort of vendetta against Monique.

    I think it's just sort of a defense mechanism of sorts. Better to be safe than sorry. And I have to admit, it does feel kind of good to reject an agent rather than be rejected by one for a change. :P

  22. #22
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by IceCreamEmpress View Post
    Complaining to your clients that people said mean things about you on the Internet--especially when nothing mean, or "harsh", or "hostile" was actually said--is not very professional.
    I would first like to say that Monique no longer offers editing services as of several months ago when she decided to make the move from writing coach to agent. So it seems that there is no conflict of interest for any of you who might be worried that there is anything unethical going on. Now the agency outsources any editorial work, just like it outsources publicity services, such as the ones that Jeff mentioned.

    My relationship with Monique is not that of an author - I am simply her web master, and I frequently update the site to reflect her ever-changing business. I have a very close relationship with Monique, as do several of her authors, as we have been working with her for years. I myself have been working with her for over five years. During that time, the lines between client and friend have blurred, and Monique and I have shared many personal experiences, stories, dinners, personal visits, and more. Can either of us be faulted for letting the wall between these two relationships disintegrate?

    I've had dinner with Jeff, Monique, and her husband, and it had nothing at all to do with business. I'm sure I'm not wrong when I say that those same lines have been demolished between Monique and her authors many times. Maybe that bothers some people. I personally like to know that the people with whom I work care for me beyond what I do professionally. If you're happy working in a corporate environment, you may feel differently. I am not, which is why I choose, like Monique, like Jeff, like Kim, to work doing something that fulfills me, with people surrounding me who also fulfill my needs as friends and associates. Monique is discriminating when it comes to choosing her clients and her company.

    I almost laughed when I read the post that referred to Dr. Greene's "unintentionally shared" information. It sounds so sinister! So....so....how do I say this? Ridiculous?

    But I didn't laugh, because, yes, some of the posts are questioning Monique's practices in a way that is constructive. But some of them are also implying that there is some dark underbelly to Monique's agency that these people are triumphantly exposing. I experienced a visceral reaction when I read some of these things, and am trying to respond in a rational way. My instinct to jump to Monique's defense (the woman is an angel!) is impossible to suppress, as I have never been treated with anything but the utmost respect and love by Monique, and everyone associated with her. If you knew her, you would not be so quick to judge. But, I don't expect you to take my word as gospel.

    Yes, you should be well-informed before you make a huge decision like choosing an agent. But, as she is no longer accepting submissions (because she's too busy working for her existing authors), I would think that all of this ferreting-out of Monique's faults is simply a waste of your time. And the bottom line is, you don't know her. You don't work with her. She won't be accepting any new authors until at least 2009, so maybe you could take that time to cool off and not be so worried about reading between the lines (or not reading at all) the website of an agent who is, to you - not a client, effectively inactive.

    I'm glad that people are smart enough to ask questions. I think that hearing from multiple published authors should be sufficient in letting you all know that WriteHigh is not a scam. If you still have questions, you should address Monique directly. Her email is on the contact page of the website at www.writehigh.com.

    Thanks...

    Jess

  23. #23
    Hapless Virago IceCreamEmpress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,442
    I almost laughed when I read the post that referred to Dr. Greene's "unintentionally shared" information. It sounds so sinister! So....so....how do I say this? Ridiculous?
    No, what I meant was that coming here and defending Ms. High against imagined meanness from eight months ago had the effect of making Ms. High look ridiculous.

    And you're doing the same.

    Not helping.

  24. #24
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    3
    Please- this isn't enlightening or informing anyone.

    I'm 1000% sorry for entering this conversation.

    I'll hush and go away. Truly, I was simply trying to defend someone who has done right by me against what appeared-to my eye- like unfair assumptions. Please stop. Please at least speak kindly to each other.

    KG

  25. #25
    Comic guy Bartholomew's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Kansas! Again.
    Posts
    8,485
    This thread is very confusing. People are angry, but I can't figure out why. Did I miss something?

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

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