Author Topic: Beware AKA Literary  (Read 18638 times)

Offline alison_face

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Beware AKA Literary
« on: May 14, 2014, 09:41:29 PM »
(I hope this isn't against our "be nice" guidelines. I would post this comment on her QT page, but she doesn't seem to have one.)

I wish I had seen all this before I decided to query Terrie Wolf.  I had found her through a #MSWL and had seen her name so frequently on Twitter that I figured she was well-connected and reputable.  Well, I hope it's okay to post this thread here, but I found this today:

http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=28839

If you don't feel like reading the entire thread (it's very long) you can skip to the end and see that everyone in the thread, even those who were once defending her, eventually cancelled their contracts with Terrie and went elsewhere.  Even someone who worked for the agency piped up.

She seemed lovely through email, but I'm definitely seeing evidence of what the conversation mentions: frequent email problems (my emails have already been lost twice, and when she said "feel free to reach out through Twitter if you don't hear back from me in a few days," she acted as if she had no recollection of this…and then ignored me…on Twitter).

All in all, sweet lady.  Doesn't sound like a good agent.  No follow through, no reliable communication, no record of sales or submissions.  Beware.

Offline MookyMcD

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2014, 10:33:56 PM »
That would likely explain why there is not QT listing. Patrick exercises some quality control, and she likely didn't pass muster. And he's wise enough not to say much about doing that.
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Offline Sarah Ahiers (Falen)

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2014, 07:45:34 AM »
Yeah it bums me out when i see her participating in MSWL and occasional contests because i think people think it means she's vetted when, from the AW forum, you can see there's problems.

But like Mooky said, if they're not on QT and it's not because they're brand new, there's usually something iffy about them
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Offline alison_face

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2014, 08:40:45 AM »
Quality control makes sense, of course.  But I'd rather be able to see WHY someone isn't listed, rather than just not be able to find them…at least that way I can make a more informed decision.  Now I'm worried about others I've queried who are not on QT, even though I couldn't find any bad press about them.

For this example, Editors and Preditors doesn't have anything bad to say about Terrie, and another agent I've queried isn't even listed there.

In the future, if they aren't listed here I'll take that as a sign!

Thanks, all!

Offline MookyMcD

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2014, 10:29:36 AM »
TBH, I'd rather know that being on QT means someone at least looked for obvious red flags --which means the agent's absence here is a red flag, because even being that new should be a caution flag, at least.

I put up a blog post on how to vet and agent on the interwebs (Shady Agent Checklist). Not too long after, an acquaintance had a disturbing experience with an agent he thought was legitimate. With his permission, I walked that agent through the checklist (Scary Agent Vetting Test (in real time)) to see if it worked. There are some tangents on the second post, because I actually did it in real time, but the checklist worked like a charm.

Of course, I'm always looking for ways to improve, so if anyone thinks I missed anything, please let me know.
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Offline SamIAm

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2014, 10:55:17 AM »
TBH, I'd rather know that being on QT means someone at least looked for obvious red flags --which means the agent's absence here is a red flag, because even being that new should be a caution flag, at least.

I put up a blog post on how to vet and agent on the interwebs (Shady Agent Checklist). Not too long after, an acquaintance had a disturbing experience with an agent he thought was legitimate. With his permission, I walked that agent through the checklist (Scary Agent Vetting Test (in real time)) to see if it worked. There are some tangents on the second post, because I actually did it in real time, but the checklist worked like a charm.

Of course, I'm always looking for ways to improve, so if anyone thinks I missed anything, please let me know.

"I still don’t know what the relationship between this dude and the agency in question even is, but I got a smoothie and two sandwich recipes to show for it. Because you need a f**king recipe to make a sandwich."

 :rolf:

This is seriously freaky to read, though. 

Research is SO important before querying.

Offline bodwen

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #6 on: May 15, 2014, 10:56:40 AM »
Quality control makes sense, of course.  But I'd rather be able to see WHY someone isn't listed, rather than just not be able to find them…at least that way I can make a more informed decision.  Now I'm worried about others I've queried who are not on QT, even though I couldn't find any bad press about them.

For this example, Editors and Preditors doesn't have anything bad to say about Terrie, and another agent I've queried isn't even listed there.

In the future, if they aren't listed here I'll take that as a sign!

Thanks, all!

Guy behind P&E once told me he'd get a lot of death threats...  

P&E only flags agents who do things that are outright illegal, and even then they were hit with lawsuit after lawsuit.  

If you're looking for the inside dirt, AbsoluteWrite is the place to go.

Offline Pandean

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #7 on: May 15, 2014, 12:14:49 PM »
Yeah, I read that thread a while ago. Like Falen, it gets me angry when I see her participating in contests and stuff...she's not legit at all.
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Offline alison_face

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #8 on: May 15, 2014, 02:28:51 PM »
She just responded to me on Twitter (oh look, she's having server issues again, fancy that!) and I tried my best to politely and professionally withdraw my query.

I have never, ever had to do a thing like that before.  Yikes.

Lesson learned! I did research Terrie, but I had only checked P&E and then skimmed the Absolute Write thread, so I hadn't seen any cause for concern.  I went back to reread it yesterday and my stomach sank! I'll read the complete thread from now on!

Out of curiosity, I have another agent looking at a partial. She is not listed on QT. Her name is Rena Rossner and she is with the Deborah Harris agency.  I'm not pulling up any bad press for either name, just a general lack of press.  (I will try your methods later on, MookyMcD, just to make sure I'm being thorough enough!)  Does anyone know why she might not be listed on QT?  Is lack of press enough reason?

I was able their agency info on Publisher's Marketplace: http://www.publishersmarketplace.com/members/harriselon/

Offline lavagna

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #9 on: May 15, 2014, 05:33:23 PM »
Their agency is based in Jerusalem, Israel. This is also where that agent lives. From their website, it looks like most of their authors are from the middle east.

Offline alison_face

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #10 on: May 15, 2014, 06:21:19 PM »
Their agency is based in Jerusalem, Israel. This is also where that agent lives. From their website, it looks like most of their authors are from the middle east.

Yes, but I've seen agents from Canada and the UK on QT, so I didn't think that would be the reason for her exclusion.

Offline violet

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #11 on: May 16, 2014, 03:55:48 PM »
Their agency is based in Jerusalem, Israel. This is also where that agent lives. From their website, it looks like most of their authors are from the middle east.

Yes, but I've seen agents from Canada and the UK on QT, so I didn't think that would be the reason for her exclusion.

My first agent was in Canada, and I would never recommend a U.S. writer going with an agency outside of the U.S. They just don't have the same connections, generally. If you really like this agent, and she offers, I would ask who her U.S. contacts are, and whether she has sold in your genre here. (Contingent on the fact that you're a U.S. writer, of course.)

Good luck to you!

Offline alison_face

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #12 on: May 16, 2014, 06:34:46 PM »

My first agent was in Canada, and I would never recommend a U.S. writer going with an agency outside of the U.S. They just don't have the same connections, generally. If you really like this agent, and she offers, I would ask who her U.S. contacts are, and whether she has sold in your genre here. (Contingent on the fact that you're a U.S. writer, of course.)

Good luck to you!

Thank you, Violet! Yes, I am a U.S. writer. I don't know if it will come to an offer, but I will remember that if it does.  :)

Offline kathleea

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2014, 10:23:40 PM »
I saw that thread after I got a request for a full from her. I sent it along but haven't heard back yet (sent in Jan.) I wish I'd seen the thread on Absolute Writer earlier. Ah, well.

Offline Sarah Ahiers (Falen)

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Re: Beware AKA Literary
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2014, 09:29:43 AM »
I saw that thread after I got a request for a full from her. I sent it along but haven't heard back yet (sent in Jan.) I wish I'd seen the thread on Absolute Writer earlier. Ah, well.

eh, don't worry about it too much. The time to worry will come if she offers rep.

But i've definitely been in the same boat where i had a full out with an agent (who looked good on the internet) but then i found out from people who were repped by her that she was not good.
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