S.T. Literary Agency / Stylus Literary Agency

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Aconite

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Sarashay said:
(The boxes were sent back to Dorothy with a note asking her not to phone, visit or mail any more manuscripts to the publisher.)
I just have to ask--did those boxes come with SASEs?
 

victoriastrauss

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HapiSofi said:
Someone I know recently got a submission from the S.T. Literary Agency.
This submission came from the author.

On request, ST used to provide a "letter of recommendation" to clients who wanted to submit on their own. I've seen several of these--identical word for word, even to the trailing "R Fletch..." signature. Conveniently, they aren't dated.

Another indication the letter isn't recent: the use of "ST Literary Agency" and the Boca Raton address. They began calling themselves Stylus Literary Agency and using the Manhattan mail drop address in April or May of this year.

- Victoria
 

AnneMarble

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victoriastrauss said:
On request, ST used to provide a "letter of recommendation" to clients who wanted to submit on their own. I've seen several of these--identical word for word, even to the trailing "R Fletch..." signature. Conveniently, they aren't dated.

But... but... but... The whole idea getting a literary agent is that you don't submit on your own. I can't imagine going to my agent (once I get one) and saying "Thanks for representing me. Now please give me my manuscript back so I can start submitting to fantasy publishers." I want an agent so I don't have to do that. :scared:

Is this a sign that those clients simply didn't understand the business of publishing and thought they should send submissions on their own? (In the case of ST, they might have been better off doing so, although they would have greatly improved their chances by ditching the letter from Fletcher as well.) Or were they trying to save fees?

victoriastrauss said:
Another indication the letter isn't recent: the use of "ST Literary Agency" and the Boca Raton address. They began calling themselves Stylus Literary Agency and using the Manhattan mail drop address in April or May of this year.
Aargh! Even the small and often cheap environmental engineering company I used to work for got rid of its old stationery when they moved. They even got ditched the old stationery when they made minor changes to the company name. Then again, they may have been cheap, but they were professional.
 

Aconite

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victoriastrauss said:
On request, ST used to provide a "letter of recommendation" to clients who wanted to submit on their own.

Wait. These people paid ST to be their agent, then submitted on their own...and would pay ST commission if they themselves managed to sell something?

Oh, if only I could get rid of these pesky ethics of mine, that setup would be pretty sweet.
 

victoriastrauss

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Aconite said:
Wait. These people paid ST to be their agent, then submitted on their own...and would pay ST commission if they themselves managed to sell something?
Yes. I heard from one author who actually did sell her ms. on her own (to a reputable independent publisher), and had to pay ST commissions because she was under contract to them at the time. She didn't seem to see this as a big problem.

Most of the people who asked for this "recommendation" letter had a poor understanding of an agent's role, or requested it when they severed their relationship with the agency (which also suggests a poor understanding of an agent's role).

Hapi, you wouldn't be able to send me the submission, would you?

- Victoria
 

Ben Dyer

I did go all the way with STliterature now Stylus and I got dumped in February after paying out $480 worth of nothing and now they won't even send me any replies. Watch out for Robert and Jennifer Dublino new C.O. Don't go with them and don't take any links that will take you on a journey to the land of rip off's and you get one of these a year on...
Are you already under contract with the agency? Please advise so I can direct you to the proper person.

Best regards,
Jill Mast
Stylus Administration

I've learned my lesson and I hope all can too and as for Evoman my sci-fi story; it will stay on my website along with all my other stories just waiting for a day when someone might read them.
Kindest Regards Benjamin Timothy Dyer
 

Gravity

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I'm sorry, maybe it's too early or maybe I'm too dim, but I've read Ben's post six times now and still don't understand it. Is everything from "Stylus Administration" up from Jill Mast? Maybe I need more coffee...

John
 

Richard

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Slight edit:
__________

I did go all the way with STliterature now Stylus and I got dumped in February after paying out $480 worth of nothing and now they won't even send me any replies. Watch out for Robert and Jennifer Dublino new C.O. Don't go with them and don't take any links that will take you on a journey to the land of rip off's and you get one of these a year on:

Are you already under contract with the agency? Please advise so I can direct you to the proper person.

Best regards,
Jill Mast
Stylus Administration

I've learned my lesson and I hope all can too and as for Evoman my sci-fi story; it will stay on my website along with all my other stories just waiting for a day when someone might read them.

Kindest Regards
Benjamin Timothy Dyer
 
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Ben Dyer

Gravity said:
I'm sorry, maybe it's too early or maybe I'm too dim, but I've read Ben's post six times now and still don't understand it. Is everything from "Stylus Administration" up from Jill Mast? Maybe I need more coffee...

John
Sorry for not putting 'Quote' up there as this is all new to me. Jill Mast is one of the names at ST now Stylus and is the one who originally got me a contract with them.
Again many apologies Ben.
 

D.J.

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Ben Dyer said:
Sorry for not putting 'Quote' up there as this is all new to me. Jill Mast is one of the names at ST now Stylus and is the one who originally got me a contract with them.
Again many apologies Ben.

Ben, Jill Mast was the one who contacted me after I sent them my ms. I never gave them money because it was a bit of a pink flag that turned crimson after I "Googled" and got this board. I had already sent questions for Jill, but since they were pointed questions they couldn't (wouldn't) answer, I never got another response.
I'm sorry you have been burned by them. You are not alone.
 

Ben Dyer

Thanks Donna for your sympathy and I wish I knew of this site before. I also wish there was more that could be done to stop fellow writers' from being burned.
 

sinner1047

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Hey Ben, I got burned by the people of this company too, only they were acting under the name of a different company, New York Literary Agency. If you want a good read, search this site for that name. I have complained to the FTC, FBI, BBB of Florida and New York and my local tv station and newspaper, all suggestions from the gurus on this site. Maybe if you follow suite we can get something moving on this...DId you pay by Paypal by any chance? Enough of those complaints and they will freeze the account so no one else can be swindled.
 

David McAfee

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Is My Manuscript Safe?

I came across the AW site by doing a Yahoo search of Stylus Literary Agency. I was disappointed but not too surprised by what I found here. I'll spare everyone the details since I know most of y'all already know them. Suffice it to say that they do have a copy of the book I have been working on for a very long time. Now, before I sent the manuscript anywhere I registered the copyright, but a shifty agency is a shifty agency is a shifty agency. Should I be concerned?
 

stace001

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Hi David,

I almost signed with them, as have many others, but I never left my manuscript with them. I don't think there's much they can, or will do with it. Which in this instance, I think, is a good thing. The worst they will probably do is try and get money up front, then leave your manuscript on a shelf somewhere collecting dust.
Did you sign a contract with them?
 

Aconite

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David, if you're worried about Stylus stealing your MS, relax. First, as MadScientistMatt said, there's no reason to think Stylus could sell anything even if they tried, which they haven't showed any inclination to do. Second, manuscripts by unknown authors just aren't a hot commodity, so there isn't a black market for them. Your MS will almost certainly end up in the trash.

(Btw, you don't need to register your copyright before you submit your MS. Respectable publishers will do that in your name when they accept your book for publication, after you've made the necessary edits and the book's in its final form. It's not true that if the publisher registers the copyright, they own the copyright--the copyright is yours unless you reassign it, and it exists from the moment of creation, registered or not, so save yourself a few bucks and some hassle and don't worry about getting it registered before submission.)
 

David McAfee

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Thanks, all. No, I didn't sign a contract with them, and I won't, either. I have not gotten the email that asks for money for "administrative expenses" yet. I read about them here in this site while researching the agency (glad I did, too).

As for copyrighting a manuscript before sending it out, well, blame that on my newbie status. :) I really thought it was something I should do first to protect myself just in case.

Thanks again, Aconite, MadScientistMatt, and Stace001.
 

Cathy C

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Hi, David!


If you want more information about copyrights, click here to reach the U.S. Copyright Office's FAQ page, which will tell you pretty much everything you need to know about your rights and how to protect them:

http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq

Also, since you now KNOW that you don't intend to work with Stylus, you might send a letter to them, on letterhead, that states something like this (please add details to fit your case.)

Dear Sir/Madam:

On approximately June 28, 2005, I forwarded the full manuscript of my fiction novel, MY DREAM BOOK, for consideration of representation.

Please be advised that this novel is no longer available for representation. The manuscript should (state your preference) [be destroyed] or [be returned to me in the self-addressed stamped envelope that I provided with my query.]

Thank you for your assistance.

Sincerely,
David McAfee

**********

Just that easy, and then there's no question about your intention. Good luck!
 

David McAfee

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A New Angle for ST/Stylus?

Well, as many of you know, they are the reason I found this site. I had sent them my manuscript and gotten a positive response, but decided to do a little digging. Most of you know the rest, so I'll spare the details.
This morning I got to work and there was the email I had been waiting on. Last I'd read in here, they were charging $129.00 to enter writers into their databases and other "administrative expenses". Nothing was mentioned of this in the email I recieved this morning, however.
What was in the email was a request to have my worked critiqued by a 3rd party (Stylus is happy to reccomend one, of course), at a cost of between $50 - $100.
Now, it seems to me that, if an agent is interested in repping your work, they would not need a 3rd party crit, or if they did, they would not charge the writer for it. Am I right?

In any case, I wrote them back stating that the ms is no longer available for representation, and to please destroy any copies they have made...
 

MadScientistMatt

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Not exactly a new angle. They've been doing this for a long time, and the "independant critique" isn't. It's done by a service owned by the Literary Agency Group or ST.

Congratulations on getting out before getting ripped off.
 

D.J.

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David, the third party critique for $50-$100 was what waved the flag for me. I wrote them back asking how a "third party critique" could be done by a "sister company" as they said they would recommend. I asked who it would be that they would recommend so I could check out their credentials, etc. I asked a few other pointed questions and got no response. It was our last correspondence. I "googled" right after I wrote Stylus with my questions and found this board as you did.
In my opinion, you did right just dropping all ties with them. Best luck moving on. I haven't tried to find another agent as of yet. I think I want to learn a bit more before I just jump in like I had before. I've just been hanging around, soaking up the knowledge this board has to offer.
 
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AC Crispin

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Relax, David

Scammers aren't interested in your work. All they want is your money.

Unpublished manuscripts by unknowns are essentially not worth stealing, to be brutally frank about it.

So relax and start querying some real agents.

Remember, this time to check the agent's rep is BEFORE querying them!

Check out Victoria Strauss's article "The Safest Way to Search for an Agent" for more info. I think there is a link to it on Vic's website.

Best,

-Ann C. Crispin
Writer Beware
www.writerbeware.com
 

Aconite

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David, if you look at the top of the main Bewares thread list, you'll see an index to publishers and agents. In that thread, scroll down to ST Literary, and look through all the threads linked there. You'll find out loads about this company, their various names, and their supposed third-party critique.

Congrats on not signing with the creeps!