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We Fired Our Agent – And It Feels Wonderful

October 3, 2011

Tags: order, agent, author - powerless, book industry, books, bookstore, Boston, editing, literary agent, New York Times bestseller list, Olympic, publishing world, Salmon - Ben, self-publishing, skier, “Skiing and Natural Health”, We Fired Our Agent – And It Feels Wonderful

My last act before I left Boston was signing a letter that essential fired our literary agent. Few acts have felt so thoroughly good lately.

Truth be told, the agency had abandoned us before – they had not done anything for years to further us, and they vanished from the face of the Earth, meaning to say, their emails and websites are defunct.

We all hear constantly that the publishing world as we knew it is crumbling, and it certainly is. On the other hand, I have never seen as many wonderful books coming out as now – in the bookstore, I feel a child in the candy store (wish that saying would go: I feel like a child at a farmer’s apple stand …). It seems, if we put a computer into the hand of every person in the world, we will hear some amazing stories.

For a while now I have a book a bout “Skiing and Natural Health” in my drawer, and when I showed it to my agent I was told that it was soooo interesting – all we needed was a famous skier on board, so that the book would sell. That’s why the book still sits in my drawer. I wrote the book from my experiences as a not-so-stellar skier – which is more important and funnier as if a world-class Olympic had endorsed it. I think. The book industry thinks differently, obviously.

We had a wonderful first agent years ago, Ben Salmon - until he left for peddling kitchen ware because one can feed one’s family with selling pots, but not many agents can do this through their agenting thing. Editing is a hard, tedious job with long, long hours and not much reward.

What came after Ben, agent-wise, was disappointing. And now we are free again. I think that self-publishing for a moderate amount of money has changed the game. Now we can publish any book we deem worthy. And if we are not bothered by a big, inflated ego, it does not matter if the book shows up on the New York Times bestseller list. All that counts is that it is available for whoever wants to read it; I am a fan of the new technology. It turns us authors from a powerless entity at the receiving end to people who shape their own fates.
Aspen eyes, by Peggy Peters

Iguazu Falls, by Xin Liu

Alexa Fleckenstein M.D. 2012, by Lolita Parker jr.

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