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Monday, February 28, 2005

Run Do Not Walk!

I'm sure most of you have already seen this, but if you haven't already been to this site (I learned about it from imponderables.com), run do not walk to http://everyonewhosanyone.com. This is one entertaining website! Expect to spend many hours there. Maybe longer.

Gerard Jones wrote a coming of age book set in 1960s San Francisco and in order to attract a major publisher, he sent it to "everone whos anyone" in the publishing industry. He lists all the people he's sent it too, and their responses. Amazingly, he got a lot of well known names to read it and respond and reading the responses and his responses to the responses is absolutely priceless. Jones has a lot of confidence in his book which is a good thing up to a point, but when you begin to believe that you've got the great unpublished novel in your hands, you're headed for the cliff, and it certainly shows in his comments. While most people would tread gingerly as if they are walking on glass, Jones goes back at the agents and publishers virtually full tilt and it makes for some fascinating exchanges. His style is not exactly good at winning friends and influencing people though. If every agent and publisher were courted in this manner, they'd be hunkering down in fallout proof bomb shelters.

Warning: you might have to spend a little time trying to figure out exactly what is going on at this website, but believe me it is time well spent. Before you try to figure out what is going on, I suggest you click on "United States Literary Agents." Scroll down to where the list starts with the agents for ICM and start enjoying this madness. You can go back later and read the introductory stuff. If you do it the other way, you may not stick with it long enough to get to the best part -- the responses from the agents and publishers. Note: not surprisingly, some of the respondents were none too happy that their comments were published, so beginning with his submissions to movie types, he is not publishing their responses on the website, but is publishing his responses to their responses. A wee bit disappointing, but fun nonetheless.

The author has also written something with the unlikely title of Ophra Wimsfree and the Mayonnaise Man which he is also trying to promote. I've already been to this site several times and can't believe it. I guarantee you're going to love it!!!

14 Comments:

Anonymous Gerard Jones said...

Hey, read the sucker and see for yourself, what I say ain't the half of it. Thanks. G.

9:09 AM  
Blogger Andy J said...

I didn't mean to be critical of your rather aggressive promotional style. I must admit I liked the chapter that I read and have to give you credit for pursuing it against those long odds. Although I must admit I couldn't toss out anything I wrote, I did come across this advice from Brian Aldiss in LIVING WITH A WRITER which I am now reading: "I hear from many potential writers who cling hopefully to their first and only novel, sending it to publisher after publisher, unable to proceed further. In my experience, it is better to throw the first shot away and get on with the second." I am of course not saying that this is your first work or the thing to do, but maybe this is the kind of thing that can only succeed after some later work does. I guess it's easy advice for Aldiss to give since he has such a fertile field of ideas for books. I know I'd have a hard time moving on myself. Hope you find that bigger publisher and more success. It'll make a great story if it does happen

6:31 AM  
Anonymous Gerard Jones said...

How can you have "more success" than to have written a great book, one of the best in all American literature? That some money-grubbing twit at Scribner or some dofus at the NY Times didn't read the thing is invenereal to me; it's his or her loss, not mine. G.

7:49 AM  
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