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[Agency] Lupine Grove Creative

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atwhatcost

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Danielle Smith just started accepting last January, so I understand why there isn't anything about her at her new agency, but has anyone querying yet? She's children's.

Looks promising, but I'm checking.
 

ctripp

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I can't see any reason not to query her atwhatcost. She's got a great group of talented, many well published, Authors and Illustrators already, who either followed her from her old agency or newly signed on prior to her opening this year. (I love Russ Cox's Illustration and Carolyn Crimi's books are wonderful!) She had good sales with both of her previous Agencies. [h=1][/h]
 

ULTRAGOTHA

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I just saw this on Twitter from Katherine Locke (@Bibliogato).

Hi, if you or someone you know was represented by Danielle Smith (previously of Fuse Literary and Red Fox Literary, most recently of Lupine Grove, her own agency), this post is important to you.

The tweet includes a screen shot of a post (from I don't know where) written by Heidi Heilig regarding Danielle Smith who has evidently resigned as an agent and allegedly been fired from Walden Pond Press. Screen shot says, in part:

PSA: hey, if you have ever worked with (or know someone who worked with) the agent Danielle Smith, it was discovered a couple of days ago that she forged offer letters to her clients (and counselled her clients not to take them) (I do not know what the end goal was).

With more after that.

https://twitter.com/Bibliogato/status/1022147356630953984
 

Shoeless

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I just saw this news. Holy hell, what a gut punch this must be.
 

ULTRAGOTHA

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Agents are offering help. Here's one.

https://twitter.com/beth_phelan/status/1022155707951538176
all the authors/illustrators (and also editors) that she deceived and betrayed have my support and my rage. this is grotesque and devastating. i'm so sorry you are dealing with this. my DMs are open for advice or venting, and i am open to queries.

(You don't have to have a Twitter account to read tweets.)
 

Kats

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Wow, this is really surprising as she seemed like a great agent with good sales. I queried her last year. I feel bad for her clients - what a breach of trust.
 

skygirl24

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Do a twitter search on her. She's being accused of fraud, of forging offer letters and asking her clients not to sign them. All over twitter.
 

jzeleznik

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I had a R&R with the other agent at Lupine, Jennie Kendrick. She's great and was devastated with what's happening. I'm hopeful that she'll land on her feet elsewhere.
 

PeteMC

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I saw this on Twitter yesterday - it's absolutely awful, but for the life of me I can't think what she was trying to achieve. "Here's a pretend offer, but don't take it" doesn't seem to actually benefit her at all, as far as I can see.
 

frimble3

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I think I can sort of see what she was trying for. She lies and makes up offers from publishers (presumably publishers the writers have heard of) so that her clients think that she's a great agent, working hard for them.
To cover the fact that these aren't real offers, she tells her clients not to sign them (and, probably, not to contact the publishers), I would guess on the grounds that these are only first offers, expressions of interest, and that she can do better for the clients, if they are patient.
Thus giving the impression that not only is she a good agent, but that she's fighting hard for them.
Presumably this keeps people on her client list, which makes her look good, and, if she's got enough clients, makes some sales.
 

pinkbowvintage

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This is absolutely devastating. I have a friend who just lost her agent because of this.
 

ctripp

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Well that makes me look like a knob, back in 2017, ACK!:(

I don't know what was going wrong with her, to push her to such ridiculous lengths, forging publisher offers, no doubt there's much more to this story. She had some VERY successful Author and Illustrator clients and really good sales to publishers like Viking, Scholastic. What the heck snapped?:(
 

angeliz2k

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I think I can sort of see what she was trying for. She lies and makes up offers from publishers (presumably publishers the writers have heard of) so that her clients think that she's a great agent, working hard for them.
To cover the fact that these aren't real offers, she tells her clients not to sign them (and, probably, not to contact the publishers), I would guess on the grounds that these are only first offers, expressions of interest, and that she can do better for the clients, if they are patient.
Thus giving the impression that not only is she a good agent, but that she's fighting hard for them.
Presumably this keeps people on her client list, which makes her look good, and, if she's got enough clients, makes some sales.

This. I went through something I suspect was not entirely different: I had an agent who, I believe, strung me along (though not with forged offers!) just to keep me on her list. I suspect that's exactly what happened here: a Ponzi scheme to maintain Smith's role as agent. No, she didn't make money off it (though it's important to note it helped her keep her job), but that's actually not the only reason people do things. Sometimes people do things like this to maintain their reputation or their own conception of themselves.
 

Sage

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I could rant here, but I just did it in another thread about similar actions by another agent. So instead I'm going to talk about how this affects, not just Danielle's clients, but Jennie and her clients. Presumably she didn't know, and never learned that side of Danielle's MO. It puts her and her clients and anyone who's queried her recently in an awkward place. Authors see new agents in established agencies (or working with established agents in new agencies) as gold. While they don't have the contacts themselves, they can use the agency's name or relationship with established agents in the agency to give weight to publisher submissions they make. This puts Jennie in a hard place. Her relationship with an established agent is tainted, and she doesn't have the experience to go it alone (which she admits in her twitter thread). Unless and until another established agency takes her on, she and her clients are essentially in limbo.

So not only do Danielle's actions screw her own clients in multiple ways, but it also affects Jennie and her clients.
 

Shoeless

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My wife is still trying to figure out why this even happened. She's an Illustrator and does picture books, has representation with another agency, and she was actually quite envious of the Lupine Grove line up of illustrators. According to her, it was quite an impressive tier of quality artists, and she actually had a little regret that she didn't "make the grade" with such an elite clientele list. Of course now she's talking about how lucky she is that she dodged the bullet, but it's still baffling to think that with a collection of clientele that are actually highly respected in the industry, and would make OTHER creatives want to be a part of that agency, Danielle Smith would still resort to this.
 

ctripp

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she was actually quite envious of the Lupine Grove line up of illustrators

Shoeless, I concur with your wife. LG had a solid group of Illustrators on board, some that had followed her from 1 or even the 2 agencies previous to her starting LG. I know of at least one of her Illustrators is in the midst of working on 2 books for 2019 release. 1 for running press, the other for Penquin Random House. Author of "Snappsy Alligator" pic books and "Two Dog's" chapter books was/is flying high with her great success. Yet there have been a number of clients that left before this collapse and there must have been a reason for that, more then just a mutual parting of the ways. But with all the earmarks of a successful Agency, it's a mystery what those reason's were.
 

Sage

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Well that makes me look like a knob, back in 2017, ACK!:(

I don't know what was going wrong with her, to push her to such ridiculous lengths, forging publisher offers, no doubt there's much more to this story. She had some VERY successful Author and Illustrator clients and really good sales to publishers like Viking, Scholastic. What the heck snapped?:(

I hope you're not beating yourself up about this, btw. There was no reason at the time to suspect there was a problem. As you say, she had plenty of good sales and no known problems at the time.
 

ctripp

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Thank you Sage, not exactly beating myself up but certainly hoping my comment didn't steer anyone wrong. I guess I'd have to have a pretty inflated ego to think anything "I" said would influence someone to sign with her but still...

This outing of herself has certainly opened the floodgates of Authors speaking up, those that used to be her client, then left, to those who had almost signed, then decided against it because of her poor communication, other personality traits that made them uneasy about her.

What's amazing is seeing so many of the kid lit Agents, even those closed to submission, coming forward and offering to read queries from the clients of LG. Doesn't guarantee them representation of course but what a fabulous gesture from the industry.
 

Redredrose

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Danielle Smith just started accepting last January, so I understand why there isn't anything about her at her new agency, but has anyone querying yet? She's children's. Looks promising, but I'm checking.

Danielle Smith, a children's book agent who founded her own agency — Lupine Grove Creative — was outed this week for falsifying offer letters from publishers for her clients. She would show the letters to her clients and then advise them not to accept the offer (because it didn't exist!!).

Her website is now defunct and she has scrubbed her profiles from the Manuscript Wish List site, etc.
 

Round Two

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Danielle Smith, a children's book agent who founded her own agency — Lupine Grove Creative — was outed this week for falsifying offer letters from publishers for her clients. She would show the letters to her clients and then advise them not to accept the offer (because it didn't exist!!).

Her website is now defunct and she has scrubbed her profiles from the Manuscript Wish List site, etc.

Yes, that's what most of the discussion above your post was concerning.
 

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