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Writer Beware's 20 Worst Agents

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victoriastrauss

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Writer Beware's Thumbs Down Agency List.

(NOTE: The list in its entirety used to be posted here, but we've found that it changes frequently enough, as agencies change their names or expand, that it quickly becomes obsolete. Rather than maintain an obsolete version here, or constantly update this post, I've posted the link above, which will take you directly to the list in its most current version on the Writer Beware website.)

- Victoria
 
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CaoPaux

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Wonderful, thank you! Methinks there're a couple we don't have listings for yet. Gimme a sec. :e2teeth:
 

CaoPaux

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Say, I don't suppose you have "20 Worst Publishers", too?

Or would it just be PA listed twenty times?
grinning-smiley-047.gif
 

ATP

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Wonderful list, and of great help to those new and not-so-new to searching for book agents.


...One request that I have is that this list be provided in alphabetical order...

Thanks,

ATP
 

Aconite

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ATP said:
...One request that I have is that this list be provided in alphabetical order...
It already is, if you file agents under their last names. (I prefer P&E's model, myself.)
 

victoriastrauss

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We're working on the publisher list. I imagine that the regulars in this topic can probably guess who's #1 and #2.

About the order--our files are alphabetical by name, which is why we went with the same thing here. There's also a good argument to do it the way P&E does. No matter what you choose, someone doesn't like it!

- Victoria
 
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CaoPaux

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victoriastrauss said:
No matter what you choose, someone doesn't like it!
That's certainly one of the Top 20 Truths. ;)
 

ATP

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victoriastrauss said:
We're working on the publisher list. I imagine that the regulars in this topic can probably guess who's #1 and #2.

About the order--our files are alphabetical by name, which is why we went with the same thing here. There's also a good argument to do it the way P&E does. No matter what you choose, someone doesn't like it!

- Victoria

Understood.

ATP.


THE LIST – revised and as tentatively proposed:

Abacus Group Literary Agency

Allred and Allred Literary Agents (refers clients to "book doctor" Victor West of Pacific Literary Services)

Arthur Fleming Associates

B.K. Nelson, Inc

Barbara Bauer Literary Agency

Benedict & Associates (also d/b/a B.A. Literary Agency)

Brock Gannon Literary Agency

Capital Literary Agency (formerly American Literary Agents of Washington, Inc.)

Desert Rose Literary Agency

Finesse Literary Agency (Karen Carr)

Harris Literary Agency (Barbara J. Harris)

Literary Agency Group inclusive of:
· Children's Literary Agency, Christian Literary Agency

· New York Literary Agency , Poets Literary Agency

· Screenplay Agency, Sherwood Broome, Inc.,

· Stylus Literary Agency (formerly ST Literary Agency)

· Writers Literary & Publishing Services Company (above-mentioned agencies’ editing arm)

Mark Sullivan Associates

Martin-McLean Literary Associates

Michelle Rooney Literary Agency (also d/b/a Creative Literary Agency and Simply Nonfiction)

Mocknick Productions Literary Agency, Inc.

Robins Agency, The (Cris Robins)

Southeast Literary Agency

West Coast Literary Associates (also d/b/a California Literary Services)
 
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DaveKuzminski

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I seriously considered listing individuals by last name, and almost used it. However, besides the lack of last names for businesses and the complications of listing every business name that ended in Agency in the page for "A"s, there was also the revelation I picked up from watching lots of people use Internet search engines. Most typed in a name in the first name, middle, last name order. So it seemed to me at the time that there would be more hits for searchers if the text matched the likely search items.

On reflection, the search engines have become more robust in the intervening years and it probably doesn't matter which method is used. However, P&E's listings have grown too large to change at this point.
 

NovelistInNYC

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I am so happy for this board and for lists like this. I'm just starting to seek representation for my first novel and I see a lot of these names come up again and again in my research. (Finesse/Karen Carr had me worried from the word go; I just can't see myself submitting to someone whose copy reads, "Miss Carr wants to represent published authors of which she is also one.") Anyway, thanks for this!!
 

haefner919

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Thanks for this list. I actually sent an email to New York Literary Agency and they contacted me back wanting to read my manuscript. Everything sounded great on their website and in the email. They said they do not charge fees and only get paid when I get paid.
 

cyril32a

AGENTS

TO EVERYBODY OUT THERE:

My name is Cyril "Poochie" Augustin, Jr., write of the films "Treasure N Tha Hood" & "Jeremy's Family Reunion".....

I just want to tell everybody do not deal with those slick agents/agency's that are not on the WGA list, period!

I have had a few bad experiences in my 12 year writing career that I have leaned from.......

If you want your script purchased or optioned write what people want to see...... and you'll have a shot at selling a script. Once you get that first sale it open the doors WIDE!

I'm a African-American man, so I write African-American stories.....

****REMEMBER!!!!

Sometimes you have to do things for FREE to get where you want to be....

Try to do a script and if someone wants it let them make it and just take money off the back end.......

I know its hard out there but those who want it the baddest will get it!!!!!

Cyril
 

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victoriastrauss said:
Below is a list of the 20 agents about which Writer Beware has received the greatest number of advisories/complaints during the past several years.


  • Mocknick Productions Literary Agency, Inc.
Victoria

This company asked me for over $300.00 to represent me, as I am unknown and they are "taking a chance with me." This is to pay for the cost of telephone calls, contacts, etc.

What a load of bullocks!!!

Caleb
 

HapiSofi

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Gem doesn't get complaints?
 

HapiSofi

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Now I'm trying to remember how long it's been since I've seen one of their submissions. I'd have thought I'd seen one within the year, but I might well be mistaken. What happened to them?
 

PaulaO

I rec'd an email today from Barbara Bauer, Ph.D asking me to remove a post on my blog where I repeat the Top 20 List. I'm not replying to her yet but thought I'd toss her request here first.

She sent the email via a contact form on my site.

Barbara Bauer, Ph.D. wrote:
Cease and Desist: Regarding your post of the 20 Worst Agents which you have copied from an Anonymous Competitor "Miss Snark," it is disparaging, and inappropriate as well as libelous and defamatory. Remove it promptly. Thank you. Sincerely, Barbara Bauer, Ph.D.

Website:
IP: 4.186.117.7

the post: http://paulaoffutt.com/blog/archives/2006/03/17/bad-agent-no-cookie/

email address the message is from (which can be faked on the form): cannoliq @ msn.com
 
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Jaws

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Let's just say that Ms Bauer's understanding of the relevant factual and legal issues leaves something to be desired. No, everything to be desired.

Even if the material stated in the list was untrue—and it's not—there is a virtually absolute privilege to use a trademark as a proper exemplar. In this instance, the only mark at issue might be Bauer's agency name (and it's not a protectable trademark for this purpose, but that's a technical matter); and however disparaging that reference is, without demonstrated falsehood in the stream of commerce there can be no infringement.

Miss Snark is not anonymous. Miss Snark is pseudonymous. Miss Snark is a real person, as is Killer Yapp. In fact, Killer Yapp probably has a better track record with manuscripts than does Ms Bauer. (Note: That's called "hyperbole." It's not actionable.)

Something that is "libelous" is "defamatory." By definition.

Something can only be defamatory if it is untrue. Ms Bauer's posting makes not claim of falsehood. Given the way she throws other language around, I find that curious, to say the least.
 

victoriastrauss

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Paula, I know of another person who re-posted the list and got a similar message from Ms. Bauer. She has also sent cease-and-desist messages to people who've made posts in public forums about their experiences with her, and she has cease-and-desisted Writer Beware. We didn't respond, and that's how I've been suggesting that others deal with her.

- Victoria
 

mdin

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I think the most appropriate response is for everyone with a blog to post this list on it. I will later.