Rants, Raves, & Random Thoughts

Shameless self-promotion of my writing skills or lack there of.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


Well, this is something I should have done long ago, but better late than never. I originally read the list at the Writer Beware Blog. Then I saw it mentioned again over at Miss Snark’s. I even saw it heavily discussed over at Making Light. Now, I realize that these are all high traffic blogs, but let’s face it…there’s still a chance that of the two hundred or so of you who slide by my humble blog(s), there are still a few who haven’t heard the word.

Knowledge is power. In this instance, the more the knowledge the public holds, the less power these scam artists have. Power to the people. Yeah…I like the sound of that. Please spread the word.

So, without further ado, here is today’s Public Service Announcement:

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.

None of these agents has a significant track record of sales to commercial (advance-paying) publishers, and most have virtually no documented and verified sales at all (many sales claimed by these agents turn out to be vanity publishers). All charge clients before a sale is made, whether directly, by charging fees such as reading or administrative fees, or indirectly, for "editing services."

Writer Beware suggests that writers searching for agents avoid questionable agents, and instead query agents who have actual track records of sales to commercial publishing houses.


The Abacus Group Literary Agency
Allred and Allred Literary Agents (refers clients to "book doctor" Victor West of Pacific Literary Services)
Capital Literary Agency (formerly American Literary Agents of Washington, Inc.)
Barbara Bauer Literary Agency
Benedict & Associates (also d/b/a B.A. Literary Agency)
Sherwood Broome, Inc.
Desert Rose Literary Agency
Arthur Fleming Associates
Finesse Literary Agency (Karen Carr)
Brock Gannon Literary Agency
Harris Literary Agency
The Literary Agency Group, which includes the following:
Children's Literary Agency
Christian Literary Agency
New York Literary Agency
Poets Literary Agency
The Screenplay Agency
Stylus Literary Agency (formerly ST Literary Agency)
Writers Literary & Publishing Services Company (the editing arm of the above-mentioned agencies)
Martin-McLean Literary Associates
Mocknick Productions Literary Agency, Inc.
B.K. Nelson, Inc.
The Robins Agency (Cris Robins)
Michele Rooney Literary Agency (also d/b/a Creative Literary Agency and Simply Nonfiction)
Southeast Literary Agency
Mark Sullivan Associates
West Coast Literary Associates (also d/b/a California Literary Services)

If you have been dealing with any of the above, please drop by one of the following websites:

Writer Beware
Victoria Strauss
AC Crispin or
Writer Beware Blog


At 3:46 AM, Blogger lime said...

that's a long list. crimony. it's a jungle out there!

At 5:28 AM, Blogger Breazy said...

Wow ! Those scam artist are thicker than thieves eh? This is actually a wonderful idea , to post the list on various blogs. Have a good day !

At 7:43 AM, Blogger Bernita said...

The more places the better, James.
Hope they do this annually or semi-annually.

At 7:56 AM, Blogger Sandra Ruttan said...

I'm actually surprised the list isn't longer.

At 8:18 AM, Blogger James Goodman said...

Lime, you nailed it on the head.

Breazy, feel free to cut and paste the list.

Bernita, I hope they do as well.

Sandra, the list itself is HUGE, but as I understand it, these are the 20 worst offenders.

At 6:04 PM, Blogger TNH said...

You're right on the money. Those are just the twenty worst. They're judged by the number of complaints, not the extent of their wickedness; and the list doesn't even touch scam publishers, scam book doctors, scam marketing services ...

At 6:46 PM, Blogger James Goodman said...

Thanks, Teresa. I hadn't even thought of bringing up the other sharks that prey on the industry. In addition to Writer Beware, Preditors and Editors is another good source to see just how deep the rabbit hole goes.


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