Wednesday, April 19, 2006

A list of the...

...Twenty Worst Agents

In fact for 'agents' read 'most likely scammers'. This has already been up on Writer Beware, and Neil Gaiman's blog, but probably the more people that are aware of this info the better. I think these are all American, and literary rather than screenwriting, but best to warn people anyway.

I had a few people emailing for writerly advice over the Bank Holiday Weekend, possibly influenced by massive amounts of sugary treats. To be honest, I'm not the best person to ask, as I have no earthly idea what I'm doing. I really don't, and I rather thought the blog made that clear, yet is seems that even on the internet it is possible to coast quite a long way on the basis of having great hair. However the best rule of thumb if you're in discussions with a possible agent is 1) are they in the Writers and Artists Yearbook? Because if they are they should be reputable, and 2) have they asked you for some kind of 'reading fee'? If the latter, then don't touch them with a bargepole. Possibly they're not evil, soul-stealing cynics preying on the simple naivete of wannabe writers, but even so, the basic rule of writing is this: money should always be moving toward the writer. If it's going the other way, something is amiss.

The one time I broke this rule was to pay ten pounds to enter a Channel 4 scriptwriting competition. But I did win it, which proves that it's okay to break your own rules if you're both a) tops and b) skill.


UPDATE: sorry for the rampant egotism evident in this post, I just finished off the home-made simnel cake. Marzipan low due to crash in... now.


UPDATE 2: Re a certain line in GW2 Ep3 - GW writer Rob has confirmed that the line is 'little wooden tree'. He even wrote it in English, just to be sure. Now let that be an end to the matter.

22 comments:

Rose said...

Wow, I know that's a load off my mind. Cheers, James, and indeed Rob.

Nice list, though. I'll stow it away for future reference.

Rose said...

Ooops, I've just read that back and it sounds horribly snarky. I didn't mean it too, sorry.

I should drink less coffee.

Anonymous said...

Bleurgh, Marzipan. Should have been banned in over 238 countries since 1509.

woot said...

I agree with anonymous but am intrigued as to what simnel cake is...

Evans said...

A marzipan-drenched-fruit-cake-style-taste-sensation is the probable dictionary definition of Simnel cake. Fact: Mrs Blue Cat Senior, AKA Jas' lovely Mum, makes a first-rate version of said cake. It's discipleicious.

Pashmina said...

I made rather an excellent Simnel cake last year, even if I do say so myself. It wasn't half a faff, though. All those little marzipan balls.

Mmmmm. Marzipan.

patroclus said...

I'm very pro-marzipan too. Never had Simnel cake, though.

Anonymous said...

I made marzipan ducks once. And a pond. And a fishing gnome. And a fence. It was a whole scene on top of a cake in fact.

Maud said...

Simnel cake is delicious. My dad makes it.

Loganoc said...

Hello James, have you seen the GW fan map yet? The most interesting thing to me is that it's almost entirely girls! What is it about GW that appeals to girls so much more, surely it can't be just JRT?
http://www.frappr.com/fansofgreenwing

Anonymous said...

I'm looking out of my window and there's a banana rollerblading around Soho Square. Just thought you'd like to know.

Spinsterella said...

I'm still a bit unsure as to what a simnel cake is. Marzipan's a solid substance in my world, how do you drench something in it?

Anyhow, in a nice bit of blogging-synchronicity, I've just eaten two pieces of battenberg.

Anonymous said...

You're stuck in the 1900s you are, solid marzpan indeed.

Is 'glutted with marzipan' a better term?
(Marzipan features heavily inside the cake (layers) and also on top (balls).)

james henry said...

I like to imagine all the 'anonymous'es are one person, having a really odd day.

Are You Mad? said...

Ah! ah ha ha! Ah! *stops*
Gawsh.
Ah, ah ha ha ha!!!

I win! TREE!!! TREEE!!!!

*dances away*

frangelita said...

Evil soul-stealing cynics? I knew it!

Anonymous said...

Apart from the soho square post it is (had to be the most interesting post, didn't it).

surly girl said...

marzipan is the devil's spunk. just thought you should know that.

Jayne said...

Damn. I had my rollerblading banana anacdote topped by the sighting last year of a man in pyjamas driving a bed round and round the square to celebrate National Orgasm Day.

james henry said...

And what a day that was.

Surly - Marzipan is n fact 'yumtastic'. I fear you have been supplied by a different boulangerie altogether.

patroclus said...

Marzipan balls, the devil's spunk, a giant rollerblading banana, Soho and National Orgasm Day? There's a very complex, filthy joke in there somewhere.

*attempts to fabricate it*

*fails miserably*

james henry said...

I should get one of those court artists in to do a sort of reconstruction...