Inevitably upon the return home from a few days away, there is a mound of mail waiting to be opened. This trip prooved no exception. Strangely, for a change, most of it was for me. Unsurprising, much was junk mail. How do they know I live here? I have made a habit of telling most people and organisations that I live at my parents’ house, yet the junk mail follows me around. I can only deduce that the council has sold on my details, contrary to the Data Protection Act, without my consent.
One of the letters was from a literary agent who I had cause to write to. How disappointing to receive in reply a form rejection. Of course, that seems normal these days from such people, but in this case they stooped low enough to be named and shamed for their unprofessionalism.
The Blake Friedman agency appears to use their form letters to attempt to sell books by their clients. Apparently they have a stash of them they are trying to sell. Now how amateur is that? Not to mention galling. What a bunch of unprofessional time wasters. Now, I was offered my first three book deal back in 2002. Whilst I do not have an agent (because they seem a fussy bunch reluctant to do anything other than accept a dead cert licence-to-print-money – and even then only maybe) I do not appreciate the hard sell from an agency trying to sell their own books about “how to pitch to a publisher”. Teach my Grandmother how to suck eggs why don’t you? I already know, and with six books under my belt, I’m already successful enough in my own little way thankyou-very-much. I might not be bestselling just yet, but at least I’m not a timewaster trying to con young hopefuls into buying tat. Well, at any rate, their form letter prooved amusing.
All those successful authors turned down by a great many short-sighted agents over the years spring to mind. Enid Blyton, Stephen King, Joanne Rowling…. It’s a long list that prooves that the publishing World has more than its fair share of visionless people who really ought to know better.