Yes, this is filled with whisky

Yes, this is filled with whisky

Friday, April 17, 2009

Sorry I haven't gotten back to you...

I've been busy killing talent -- and publishing.

What makes this hilarious as well as mis-informed is that the last thing I sold was of course...debut literary fiction.


C said...

If that blogger writes books anything like that post no wonder he hasn't been signed. I lost interest about halfway through.

If anything he said was true someone would've capitlised on it by now. High-brow literature may be slow to grow but once they're known they sell forever.

Jane Smith said...

I read the post linked to before anyone had commented and felt there was nothing I could add that could be positive... it was passionately argued. There. That'll have to do.

But, oh! The misinformation. I felt like I was wading hip-deep in it.

I feel for the author, I really do: but that doesn't excuse her presenting so much nonsense as fact, and misleading her readers in this way.

Taymalin said...

C: I lost interest halfway through too--hard to do with such a controversial (in writing circles anyway) topic. I wanted to get offended, but ended up just feeling sorry for her. Sour grapes much?


Robert Young said...

I mean, that was a pretty good lesson in how not to write, as well as how to alienate some of the best blogging agents around. Thank you, Ms. Walters, for teaching me those fabulous techniques.

morphine-moniza said...

I'm annoyed :(. The holier than thou attitude gave me a headache.

I get so angry when snooty people refuse to acknowledge the fact that genre novels have literary merit too. It makes me livid, it really does, because the books that have had the most impact on me as a reader were written expressly for the purpose of entertaining. Books don't have to be esoteric to be considered literature.

Even Shakespeare wrote trashy, commercial plays. I could never fathom Literary Novels as a category. What makes a novel literary? I hate the way the category itself implies everything else is somehow artistically unimportant.

I guess novels need labels so they can be slotted into a section in bookstores. But writers like her (who take the label of "literay" as a proof of artistic superiority) really annoy me. It's so unbelievably arrogant to assume that the only reason her book isn't getting published is because readers only enjoy reading trashy books. Because we don't. Commercial fiction has artistic merit too. Heck, even trashy fiction has artistic merit. Sometimes more than so-called literary novels.

Natalie Hatch said...

Wow "Talent Killer" that'll look great on your CV. Did you reject this author?

Amy Sue Nathan said...

He is one angry writer.

And I too, skimmed, after a few grafs.

What this author fails to realize, or admit, is that everything evolves. Commercial publishing exists for all the reasons he says, which is why perhaps his writing is not commercial at all, and not viable in a strip mall bookstore or Walmart atmosphere.

But belittling genre authors? Editors? Agents? That leaves me with no compassion for him, even after 60 rejections.

Rick Daley said...

From my perspective, it seems that agents exist because editors want them to. The editors are the ones who won't accept the unagented submissions. Complaining to the editors that you don't like the system they established without understanding the benefits of said system seems misguided.

And what is my perspective? I am an unpublished writer with an honorable collection of rejections from queries and partials, and I am currently taking the feedback received into a re-write of my manuscript. I like to think that makes me a "smart writer" on the road to becoming a "published writer."

I am also a business professional, and I started up a software company and pulled it up by the bootstraps to a successful multi-million dollar corporation, so I understand the business side of it.

The networking and hard work required to sell a book is not much different from selling software. First you need to have a good product. Second you need to have a good salesperson who can articulate the values and benefits of that product.

A good product that brings no value will not be sold. We all have bills to pay, and if a company is going to invest time and capital into any project, there must be some semblance of a return on that investment.

Of course, I'm preaching to the choir here. Please put your hands together and join me for a round of "O Come, All Ye Faithful."

Skeptic said...

I do get the sense in some of the comments that people leave (on ALL blogs, not just those of the lit agents) that people who comment far and wide are... well, attention seeking folks. There IS some definite sucking up that goes on.

Omit "blog" and walk into any place of business and you see the same thing going on with the "boss". It's human nature. Big woo hoo. Someone pointed out the obvious.

Now, onto the slithery parts. Somebody must've struck a nerve, eh? Either that or this Mary person simply has no sense of sarcastic humor floating through her veins. Thank god some people do. You crack me up on a frequent basis, Janet. Don't ever change. The world needs more, more, MORE, I say!

I clicked her link to her book and tried to read. Not so much my cup of tea. Wouldn't read it for free, wouldn't buy it. My personal opinion is that 60 agents made the right call.

Something you taught me... the last paragraph on the linked-page she posted where that little synopsis of the book is written, it says how "comic and moving - and ultimately deeply inspiring" her book is. Yet I experienced nothing that tugged me in those directions reading what preceded.

Maybe I'm just stubborn. I don't like authors telling me what I'll feel about anything. I'm a big girl, independent to the chagrin of most who know me. I'll make up my own damned mind, thank you very much.

Joyce said...

I feel sorry for her, too. She seems like one of those people who likes to place blame elsewhere when she should be taking a good, long look at herself and her writing.

Kim Colley said...

Dear Ms. Walters,

Thank you for your submission, but I regret to say we're not taking on any more complaints at this time. We wish you the best of luck placing your complaint elsewhere.

Sincerely, etc.

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Wow, someone's not bitter. I didn't make it even half way down before I grew bored.

sirayn said...

That post honestly pissed me off. This disgruntled author named and shamed some of the most generous agents in town - the ones who spend hours and hours trying to help newbies, whose blogs are archives of valuable advice. Go pick on somebody else. >:(

burger-eater said...

Debut literary fiction? It must be someone particularly brilliant (or particularly sleazy).

Snarky Writer said...

Bet you didn't know you were single-handedly killing literature, huh, Janet? XD

B.E. Sanderson said...

I heard about this over at the Romance Divas forum. I guess she's making the rounds because from the sounds of it, she has something posted at Amazon along these same lines. I'm amazed she can't see she's killing her career. I guess I shouldn't be, since she can't see all the new books in the literary fiction section at any book store either.

Stephanie Faris said...

Ahhh, the snobbery of the "great artist." I worked for the Tennessee Arts Commission for six years and listened as so-called artists thumbed their noses at such "no-talent hacks" as Thomas Kincade as "hotel art." You can almost see the bitterness dripping from their pens as they disdain anyone who has made a living writing. They, of course, are the only ones with talent. Ugh.

Mary W. Walters said...

Thanks for the correction you left on my blog post/essay, Janet re: 15%. If you had actually read the rest of my essay, you'd have noticed that I specifically discuss debut literary fiction writers. Your representation of one does not counter my argument in the least.

Any comments left on agents' websites have to be suspect -- except mine. If I had not decided I was not likely to ever get an agent (either because my fiction is too crappy or too literary or because my photo does not make me look like an attractive male. Snort), I would not have had the courage to speak my mind, either.

Tara Parker said...

As an aspiring writer eons away from even considering pitching to an agent, I found her post a little intimidating.

And even though I'm sure there is a spark of truth to what she says, her bitterness is obvious.

#1 Dinosaur said...

Sounded like someone railing against the need to go to a doctor to buy prescription drugs. "We can learn all we need to know about drugs on Google. Why should we be forced to see a doctor in order to get what we know we need?"

The Stupid; it burns.

Just_Me said...

Bitter and misinformed. Whining isn't going to get you anywhere in this industry. I wish it didn't get you anything anywhere, but we always have Hollywood and TV talk shows...

The blogger can string together a sentence, and apparently has strong views on every genre not her own. But I missed the appeal. Give me more low-class sci-fi any day!

DebraLSchubert said...

That post should be retitled, "War and Peace." (Except it's longer.) And, Janet, I had no idea what a creep you are. I guess that super-nice rejection you sent me was a fluke.

Cat Schield said...

She has a book posted on Autonomy. After reading the first couple pages, I can understand why 60 agents might have passed. IMHO, it's an example of her believing her book worthy of publishing, when in fact, it needs work. She'd probably receive the same response if she went directly to a publisher. She's taking her frustration out on agents instead of improving her writing. A waste of time.

Aimless Writer said...

I couldn't finish. Seemed a bit whiney.
I'd rather think of the positives. It's like jokes about lawyers. Sometimes you really need a lawyer and then your grateful they are there for you.
I think we need agents too. I'm grateful they're there to do all the technical stuff.

Heidi the Hick said...

60 rejections?


That's ALL?

She's only getting started!! You don't get to whine after only 60 rejections!

DeadlyAccurate said...

I had this insane urge to edit that diatribe and send it back. Instead I lost interest about a quarter way through and did something fun. Talk about overwrought and bitter.

Bitterly Books said...

Thanks for the laugh, I needed that.

"I am certain that you were drawn to your career—and by 'career' I mean 'vocation,' including the spectrum of responsibilities that ranges from new-book acquisition to the kind of excellent substantive editing that makes great novels outstanding—because of your love of literature."

That seems rather heavily sarcastic for someone trying to sway an editor over to their way of thinking.

Kim Kasch said...

Well all I can say to that is no one buys a lottery ticket hoping for a $3 JACKPOT :p

Sean Ferrell said...


I agree with the anti-agent post. I'm tired of you agents standing in our way. Enough already.

Oh, wait a second... you're my agent, aren't you?

Yeah, so, about that... uh...

By the way, it was nice having drinks with you last night.


Susan Adrian said...

Oy. Complete bollocks, that.


behlerblog said...

As an editor who has two of Janet's clients, I can't disagree strongly enough about this poor author's premise. Agents are the golden apples that hang on gilded trees. They make our jobs easier, serve as a go-between, another set of experienced eyes, and are some of the best co-cheerleaders I've ever met.

Sour grapes is a most unattractive trait.

Haste yee back ;-) said...


Well, everybody knows Mary now!

Haste yee back ;-)

Eileen said...

I was going to comment about the value I get from my agent and then realized that she would assume I was a talentless hack of genre fiction anyway so didn't bother.

I think what gets lost in the shuffle at times is a lot of an agents time is dealing with existing clients. I'm sorry if my agent didn't send you a personal rejection letter- maybe her time is being used dealing with contract issues, selling foreign rights or reading proposals from those of us who are already on her list. We writers are a demanding lot.

Gwen said...

C: I agree, I started skimming after about the second paragraph, and then just stopped.

To me this person is saying 'Boo hoo, nobody is agreeing to represent me, so I'm going to complain about how all the other writers (fantasy writers, like moi, for example) have it so much easier, and agents are just in it for the money!!! WAAAHHH.'

Um. Agents ARE in it for the money. Not everybody can live in a cardboard box and earn a living selling bad poems written on napkins. Even though writing is an art and maybe his literary fiction is OH SO ARTISTIC, publishing is a business, and it can't continue to do business if it's constantly drowning in debt. Obviously, representing books that sell is necessary, otherwise there would be no more agents and more more publishers, and people would be buying "artistic" books on the street corners from said box-dwelling writers.

(Can you tell I get annoyed by people whining about this business? If you didn't want to struggle you should have chosen a different profession!)

Eric said...

I started to leave a comment on her blog, but gave up. (Just like I gave up reading her screed about halfway through.) If someone doesn't understand that publishing is a business, and that writers work at the intersection of Art and Commerce, they're not going to get anywhere, anyhow.

Jael said...

So many layers of error. Agents getting 10 percent? Literary fiction dead, when the biggest advance of the spring has been for Audrey Niffenegger? Editors are the pure and art-driven, and agents all craven money-hungry hacks?

Learn the craft AND the business, write a great book, and you will see it in print. I absolutely believe that. I wish this writer did too. It's a much happier place to be.

ryan field said...

This is also a perfect example of how the Internet can be a very mean, creepy place sometimes. Not only was the post loaded with misinformation (10% commission; not), but also filled with facts that were taken out of context and twisted to suit the writer's own agenda.

I wanted to leave a comment, but I've learned to ignore these people and not give them the attention they crave.

Abby said...

I just want to be invited to the secret Agent Illuminati meetings! Sure, I'm an editor, but aren't we part of the vast commercial-wing conspiracy, too? I'll even bring my own hooded robe.

Sara J. Henry said...

Read her book sample over on Authonomy - and the glowing accolades from commenters. It explains a lot.

Matt said...

She seems to define success as having her book worshipped by fans and publishers alike, and agents are just an unfair impediment to that otherwise inevitable success.

Success as a writer is found in the love of writing. The joy of completing something as daunting as writing a book, regardless of whether anyone actually reads it, is what makes it all worthwhile.

At least that's what I tell myself to get to sleep at night.

Editorial Anonymous said...

Everyone has handicaps in their chosen work. The successful people are the ones who recognize their handicap and do what they can to ameliorate its effect on others.

This writer is, alas, simply unaware that she has a debilitating personality.

s.w. vaughn said...

Mary said: Any comments left on agents' websites have to be suspect -- except mine.Lady, I was trying really hard to give you the benefit of the doubt. But seriously? If you're too precious to be considered within the ranks of the rest of us schlubs, mayhap you should just contain your comments to your own blog.

Skeptic said...

s.w. vaughn, I think her point is that we're a bunch of mindless automatons who would never disagree with an agent for any reason under the sun.

I think she has a personality disorder not otherwise specified - a nasty mix of anti-social traits blended with histrionics and narcissism served with a huge block of ice (you can still see the chip on her shoulder where it used to live).

But that's just my professional opinion based solely on behavioral observations.

Pepper Smith said...

A human response, but sad. It's always easier to blame someone else.

There are always open doors, if your work is up to snuff. This, from an unagented author with three books coming out from a small press.

Melanie Avila said...

Sheesh, angry much?

Kristin Laughtin said...

From the linked-to post: they would likely hack one another’s heads off were they not united by one self-serving mission: to ensure that quality fiction never hits your desk.
Holy pretense and assumptions, Batman! The whole post was an exercise in sniveling self-indulgence.

I've said it before: if your work isn't "good enough" to attract at least one agent, 99.99% it wouldn't have fared better if we just eliminated the agenting system and submitted directly to editors. And why would the editors look for different things from the agents? Would an editor look at an unsaleable manuscript and still want to take it on? Is there some inherent difference in personal taste between agents and editors (as the post seems to imply with all the accusations that "agents have built this gated wall around you")? I think it's probably the editors who wanted agents first, not agents who have convinced editors that they're needed.

And the suggestion that publishers can hire interns to weed through the slush seems to me about the same as using agents, just not giving them a cut of the royalties and advances.

It's one thing to have frustrations with the system (especially things like queryfail), but half this post is whining that queries are hard and agents say no to true artistes. It's a business. Get over it.

The poster noted her MS had been rejected by 60 agents. So have some of the biggest bestsellers. It happens. Get over it. Keep trying. If the book is good, it'll happen eventually.

Melissa said...

Oh my God. You guys made it halfway? I couldn't get through a quarter before my eyes hurt from rolling so much and I was too bored to continue. Poor, poor writer. It must be soooo frustrating when publishers and agents choose SALES over your obvious genius. You know, I bet they're JEALOUS! I bet they're just intimidated by your intellectual superiority.

jimnduncan said...

Well, I had to go over and put my two cents in on that (ok, it was more like ten cents). Was it me, or was there just a little bit of martyrdom going on there? And she's had a whole 60 rejections? Someone sound the alarm, my dam of tears is about to break. Have to give her credit though, that was one of the longest whines about not getting published that I've read in a while.

There needs to be a site that all writers get referred to that lays out the facts about how the industry works and just how flipping-absurdly-infuriatingly-frustrating it can be to seek publication, and that just because you write the next great American novel, that it doesn't mean you have a right to get read more than anyone else does.

Where is Ms. Snark and her clue gun when you really need her?

Robin said...

I kind of like that you have minions.
What I wonder is do you have acolytes as well? They're kind of similar, but are they interchangeable?

Mags said...

Such abuse of the word "that" makes my brain leak stuff it probably shouldn't be leaking.

Jane Smith said...

Jim N Duncan wrote,

There needs to be a site that all writers get referred to that lays out the facts about how the industry works....A blog all about How Publishing Really Works? As luck would have it, you'll find that particular blog right here:

(OK, it's my blog, but Janet has linked to it in the past so I hope she won't mind this blatant plug from me, just this once.)

RB Ripley said...

"Even Shakespeare wrote trashy, commercial plays."

I am shocked. Shocked, I say! :-)

Couldn't agree more about the merit of genre novels.

Suzan Harden said...

ROFLMAO - Thanks for the link, Janet. I needed a good laugh today.

Hmmm, since you haven't killed me yet, I must be a no-talent hack. Which means I'll be published someday once I convince one of you evil gatekeepers I'm appropriately talentless. KEWL! I needed some positive news today!

Steve Stubbs said...

Whoa! This character sounds like what in some circles is called a PITA (that's Pain In The Ass, not to be confused with a form of popular and tasty fast food offered by Jack-In-the-Box.)

Someone should tell Miss Greatness that Dickens was a commercial writer in his time. So was Mark Twain. So was Edgar Allen Poe.

Commercial writers can be proud to count literary giants as colleagues, whether they themselves stand tall or not.

Vicky said...

The Literary Goddess has spoken! My opinions are suspect. I might as well hang it up forever, especially since I, gasp, write historical romance. Never mind that I signed with an agent. Never mind that 3 offered to represent me; clearly it's the sign of the fall of literature. Thanks to the Literary Goddess, I now know my writing is worthless trash written for the sole purpose of lining the greedy pockets of agents and publishers. I cringe as I recall all that time I wasted on suggested revisions from agents. Alas, I thought to improve my craft. Instead, I should have spent my valuable time writing scathing blogs about vile commercialism and evil gatekeepers. Woe is me.

Elissa M said...

Ms. Walters (writer of linked post everyone is commenting on) said, "Any comments left on agents' websites have to be suspect -- except mine."

I think that pretty much sums up her attitude in a nutshell.

Of course, my comment is suspect...

Dominique said...

Oh my god, it never ended. I tried so hard to get through it, because that's a lot of anger.

lilywhite said...


"I can tell you why your desk is piling up with flimsy bits of vampire literature, fantasy, romance, detective stories and the kind of first-draft bubble gum that used to be called chick-lit but is now shuffled in with other women’s writing in order to give it heft—although as far as you can see, neither the quality nor the subject matter has improved—which you are required to somehow turn into publishable books."

I've never read anything so dismissive and pompous and outright dead-wrong in my life.

I'm so mad I'm speechless. Since you don't know me, you'll have to take my word for it that I'm NEVER speechless.

laughingwolf said...

dunno whether to laugh or cry...

BookEnds, LLC said...


I have to give you, Nathan, and Colleen credit for even commenting. I was so confused by the entire thing I couldn't even think of anything that I could say.


CNU said...

Yeah I have to actually be the one person that will disagree with the cadre of devoted fans commenting.

(*I'll be brief. Probably not, but one can only hope.*)

Basically explaining a book through a query letter in ten words or less is not only moronic, but also incredibly demeaning to the writers submitting.

I can appreciate that agents need to make a living selling scripts, but also the submitting process needs to be updated. There needs to be a way that people can submit their work without having to jump through seventy hoops just to send five pages of print. (To an intern no less...) Is this really that difficult of a proposition? I submit that it is not.

She did make some valid points, but at the same time the publishing houses do need some filtering process. (*Thus agents become the liver of this dysfunctional family of organs.*) Now the quality of literary agents (* Obligatory disclaimer: I don't know Janet personally, I'm sure she is marvelous, this is a biting saterical generalization aimed at provoking change or at least a brief thought to contrast the current wave of enthusiastic boos.*) could be improved by having education requirements for lit. agents similar to real estate agents. That way there'd be some level of consistency as to standards and practices. (*Note the AAR doesn't count because it is voluntary...there's no bite. If one were to mess up in real estate practice they might even end up in jail. That's what I'm referring to when I mean 'standards.' I was a real estate agent for a year or two. The regs are vicious if one were to make even a slight infraction.*)

Also agents ought to have a little more grace with the writers (*not to mention surly bloggers...) submitting. (*unless the writer is being completely unreasonable.*) It is important to note, no money would be coming in without the dreaded 'slush pile.' (Even if one does have a 'stable' of amazing authors, they received those authors at some point through submission.)
Agents are not bad people as a whole and I'm not trying to say 'all are bad and without merit.' I am saying that as a group agents can do better. The practices agents use can be updated especially with such improvements in technology. (*Example e-books and illustrated works will be eating up more of the publishing pie.*)

Yes this is the point where I'm going to be crucified for the sin of speaking against the masses. One would hope my position would be attacked as opposed to my integrity, but given my experience on blogger as a whole I know that's not the case. Be fair or at least 'try' to be fair.

I'm trying my 'kinder and gentler' approach, because there have been claims that I'm abrasive and that people are taking my comments personally. This is the best I can muster. Seriously. Honest to God. No hard feelings. I just happen to disagree. This doesn't say anything about my ability to write or me as an individual. I'm just saying at least 'consider' the opposing argument, otherwise one will never evolve.

Yeah... that wasn't brief, perhaps won't even be printed and probably filled with type-o's, but oh well.


-The Gadfly.

(*If you get that reference, Kudos :).*)

Julie Weathers said...


Before we begin, here are the rules. I know you detest following instructions because you are a special little snowflake, but such is life.

If you deign to respond to my comments do it here. Don't take your condescending remarks to my blog and start posting in an entirely unrelated post. If you have the guts to stand up for what you believe, then do it in the arena where the shot was fired.

"Yeah I have to actually be the one person that will disagree with the cadre of devoted fans commenting."

Well, you don't have to but you can't pass up a good opportunity to show your disdain for the system. You've already expressed your disdain for the system and agents, but it makes you a hero in your own eyes because you are brave enough to challenge them. Most of us just call it trolling.

"(*I'll be brief. Probably not, but one can only hope.*)"

Of course you won't. I doubt you could be brief on a true or false question.

"Basically explaining a book through a query letter in ten words or less is not only moronic, but also incredibly demeaning to the writers submitting."

If you really attempted to learn anything from the numerous agents who post tips on various matters, including querying, you would know different. Nathan Bransford says the "sweet spot" is somewhere around 300 words. I would go look up the range, but that's pretty close. If the query process is demeaning and too confining for you, go self publish.

Do you walk into a prospective employer and tell them you didn't fill out the job application or resume because it's moronic, too demeaning and you shouldn't have to do it? They should just guess how wonderful you are or just hire you and find out.

Let me know how successful that method is.

Jumping through 70 hoops? Do you even bother to read submission guidelines before you spout off?

Janet's guidelines.

1. Read the guidelines and see if she represents your genre.

2. Send to to her.

3. Write a cover letter about the work. Most agents say keep this to one page (not ten words or less).

4. Attach 3-5 pages. If you have to send six to keep from breaking a sentence or thought she isn't sending the query police after you.

Four difficult hoops for you to jump through to get 5 pages to her. Have you even bothered to look at the submission guidelines?

She doesn't mention include your contact information, but it would seem like common sense to do so. However, if you want to nitpick, then make it five hoops.

Gary Corby sent out of date contact information that wasn't working and she set the world on his tail to find him. She has since signed him and sold his book. All based on a query with a major flaw, no contact information.

You want literary agents to have degrees before they can become agents like real estate agents do?

I was a Realtor. I taught real estate classes. I owned my own company. Being a Realtor, like a member of AAR is voluntary. A few weekend courses and a test and you can get your license.

Real estate agents break the rules every day. Believe me, I know. If they break the law, they get charged. Just as if a literary breaks the law, they get charged.

The main difference is, lawyers didn't want promulgated contracts established because that took a way a source of income. So the lawmakers, most of whom are lawyers, set up some stringent guidelines, which they should. Contracts are serious business. Most of the rules, however, are not from laws, but rather from the Realtor's Association, umm like the AAR, another voluntary organization.

There are other options for those of you who don't want to trouble yourself to go through the query writing and submission process. Self publish or submit directly to the publishers.

Prove the system doesn't work. Come up with a better one and make it work.

Mary's cry from the heart, she's been rejected fifty times, therefore it has to be the system.

Sometimes the system works. If you don't like the game then play it your own way, but quit screaming about how it doesn't work because you don't want to take the responsibility to improve your own work or keep trying until you find someone who is willing to battle the dragons for you.

I asked Janet point blank at a book roast if she would ever consider repping epic fantasy. She told me no. This was after I had been hanging out here and my other favorite blogs for a while to figure out how to improve my writing.

No problem. She was honest and I appreciated it.

I sent my query to a workshop she hosted at Surrey and then didn't even show up for it. In typical Janet fashion, she told people to go find me and tell me she was looking for me. She wanted me to send in pages based on the query.

Will she offer representation after she reads the manuscript? Who knows. However, I trust her to be professional enough to tell me no if it doesn't interest her or she thinks she can't sell it. A no means I hunt for the right agent for it, not that she has rejected me. If I get enough rejections, it means I take a closed look at the manuscript and see what's wrong with it.

It doesn't mean I start railing at a system that works. I take responsibility for my own fate. It's in my hands, not the hands of ogre agents who want to crush my dreams.

Rejection is part of the journey. Dejection is a choice.

Julie Weathers said...

Well, I suppose I may have to eat a bit of crow. There is proof that writers are receiving poor treatment by the publishing industry.

Mea culpa.

CNU said...

Without fail...Do I have a kick me sign from you Ms. Weathers? Are you here to mock me merely because I disagree. Why yes you are. Sheesh.

Sorry you have a personal crusade against me, I don't know what I did to deserve your random attacks on my writing and integrity, but it's just absurd. Yes I did write you because there was no other way to contact you. You claimed that conversation was over and it was... Thanks for picking that scab... Now I have to respond. (*I'm thrilled... really...)
I thought prowling my personal site for information, which you could falsely use against me would be as insane as me saying something about your personal life on someone's site and criticizing you over it just to prove a point (An ill informed point) That's what you did, that's why I was ticked and rightly so.
I was responding to a post (Mary Walter's post) with my own opinion (On both blogs, I never mentioned you by name merely that I've been attacked on blogger, which apparently you inferred was 'just you' now who has the ego?) you have in no way responded to any of my points, but you are sending venom my way, which you claim is what I'm doing. Look at my post which doesn't go after anyone personally and look at yours again. Sigh. Yes, this is why I dislike commenting on blogger, but I do it because sometimes these comments are about as 'fair and balanced' as Fox News. So yes I DO feel it's at least somewhat appropriate to have a counter view. That's what a normal site does- have debate. If I were merely trolling I'd go after everyone personally and not talk about the issue, that's what a troll DOES that's the definition. I HAVE said something about the issue pertaining to the conversation at hand. YOU on the other hand are going after me with pitchforks and torches. There isn't one redeeming thing you've said, other than 'get thicker skin' which is a TOTAL cop out!

(BTW-As a realtor you should know that the regs. are much more astrigent than the regs for the literary profession. So you don't even need to do the research. You KNOW there are virtually no laws governing the literary agent profession. ANYONE can claim that status, not necessarily be good or successful, but they can claim the status. Real estate laws are stricter, which you aren't even refuting! But you're stating it's true and yet it isn't valid, which is a contradiction in terms. Also you can't access the MLS without being a member of NAR and other organizations, so it's difficult to be an agent without being member, not impossible but VERY difficult. You know all this information and yet you still state my point as 'invalid.' )

You said the conversation was ended a while ago and I respected that.(*apparently that wasn't good enough.*) This was a new conversation brought up by Ms. Reid and I was responding. I in NO way asked for your opinion on me personally or what I should do with life or dealing with rejection or any of that.
I don't think I'm a hero to anybody or anything. I say what I believe and that's that. If you've got a problem with that then that's: YOUR problem.

I take beatings all the time from you on this blog, and since you can't refute what I'm saying you attack me personally. It's ridiculous. I can't disagree, talk about not dealing with rejection- does everyone have such little self esteem that they need to attack an opposing argument by attacking the speaker? It's like having a debate and punching the opponent. What does that prove? Nothing! You basically are just as ignorant as those people you are decrying! You loathe all people that make any critique of agents or the publishing industry in general. I was brave enough to comment on the main blog with my opinion. I NEVER stated you by name NOT once! I just said I had difficulties with being attacked for an opinion in the past. I never insulted, insinuated an insult or attacked- ANYONE. You're just being a bully, you probably stole kid's lunch money in the past.

I really don't want to have this conversation, I wanted to have a debate, not another boxing match where you try to find hot button topics that are designed to take me off the main point and discuss something that has nothing to do with the original conversation.

Lastly, I was stating sending query letters was ridiculous/demeaning because it's not the writing, it's the explanation and marketing plan for the writing, which should be the agents job. Period. They're getting between 15-20% for their work, they must earn it just as the rest of us do. Most agents don't want even a partial ms until the query letter THAT is what I was stating. The use of interns is also annoying because you're then two times removed from the publisher. These were my three points. You refuted none of them. You just assumed (*Falsely.*) that I sent out my manuscript to a bunch of agents and got rejected when in fact most people can't even get past the query letter stage because we're not technical writers. (*Well most of us aren't technical writers.*) Nor do we have an MBA in marketing or anything like that.

I don't know how else to say this unless perhaps I should switch into Latin exhorcism mode- maybe that'd work.

"In Nomine Patris..."

Walking away now. Slowly. Please don't follow, don't bother answering. Just don't bother. This response won't even be approved, but if Ms. Reid would be so kind she could send this response via e-mail to Ms. Weathers so as to not even clog the msg board OR Ms. Weathers page with pointless arguing.

That was such a waste of time. I have better things to do in life. Goodbye...

Julie Weathers said...

Without fail...Do I have a kick me sign from you Ms. Weathers? Are you here to mock me merely because I disagree. Why yes you are. Sheesh.--

Yes! How did you know? I call it CNUrobics.

If you want to spout drivel, then you should expect to have people say, "Hold on a minute, bucko."

You just assumed (*Falsely.*) that I sent out my manuscript to a bunch of agents and got rejected when in fact most people can't even get past the query letter stage because we're not technical writers.--

Nope, I assumed you didn't get past the query letter stage because that is what you rant about. I'm good like that. I think I should write mysteries. I pick up on great big neon-lettered clues almost as good as Columbo.

No one has to be a technical writer to write a decent query letter. Evil Editor invites people to submit queries and even resubmit them so he and the minions can help.

Query Shark is strictly queries and how to improve them.

Nathan Bransford has several excellent posts, as do many other evil, blood-sucking, soul-stealing, talent tromping agents.

The problem is, you and MW need to be willing to take advice and that seems to be a hurdle you are unwilling to attempt.

Just because someone doesn't agree with you doesn't make it a hate crime or a personal attack. I really would have responded exactly the same if you had used a different name.

Slowly. Please don't follow, don't bother answering. Just don't bother. This response won't even be approved, but if Ms. Reid would be so kind she could send this response via e-mail to Ms. Weathers so as to not even clog the msg board OR Ms. Weathers page with pointless arguing.--

So, once again, you don't mind dishing it out, but if someone points out your failures in logic they need to be exorcised?

No, I didn't post a single remark on your blog last time. You're the one who brought the battle to mine until I finally had to shut down comments on that thread, which was totally unrelated to your original rant. Surprisingly, it was pretty much the same as this one.

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

Why the query process isn’t working for you:

Yeah [omit ‘yeah’] I have to actually be the one person that will disagree with the cadre of devoted fans commenting. [Wordy sentence; sentence structure problems, and problems with passive voice. You mean, “I disagree with many of the comments.” Simple, direct sentences work best.](*I'll be brief. Probably not, but one can only hope.*) [Unnecessary. Omit.]Basically explaining a book through a query letter in ten words or less is not only moronic, but also incredibly demeaning to the writers submitting. [Wordy. The type of sentence I get from my middle school students. What you mean is: Expecting us to explain our book in ten words or less is moronic and demeaning to writers.]I can appreciate [passive voice] that agents need to make a living selling scripts, but also the submitting process needs to be updated. There needs to be a way that people can submit their work without having to jump through seventy hoops just to send five pages of print. (To an intern no less...) Is this really that difficult of a proposition? I submit that it is not. [Oh, heck, rather than explain all the problems with this paragraph, consider this re-write: I appreciate that agents make their living from selling manuscripts, but the submission process should be simplified. There are too many steps in the process.]Am I holding you up to ridicule? Humm … maybe. But, unkind act though it is, you invited response by your post. Good writing gets noticed. If your posts represent your writing, you’re being rejected because your writing is immature, undeveloped, cluttered.

I read your response post found on your blog. You claim that your work was edited by a copyright attorney. Perhaps it was, but an attorney isn’t an editor. Attorneys are noted for their bad writing. It isn’t a copyright attorney’s job to edit. He was being kind. That you see his kindness as a professional edit demonstrates your inexperience. There is no shame in being inexperienced, though there is pain in it. Find your self a good crit group. Take an English grammar refresher. Think through your words. Edit brutally. Stop blaming others for your own flaws.