Thursday, February 17, 2005

A little more on Lantz Powell

My last posting about the ups and downs of communicating with Lantz brought one posted comment and a couple of emails.

Yeah, unlike many bloggers I put my email address in my profile for all to see.

I know, it’ll be snatched up by web crawlers and wind up on a zillion spam lists. I figure, what’s a zillion or two more? Most of my spam doesn’t even merit a glance and is deleted after looking at the subject line and sender. A few are entertaining. I keep waiting for the next new BIG category. After those for weight loss, size enhancement of personal body parts (male and female), cheap rip-off software, erectile dysfunction cures, cheap prescription drugs that are probably sugar pills, low rate mortgages, and Rolex watches that are probably Timex, what else is there? Oh, I get the occasional ad for an online casino or a new porn site, but most are now stale.

Reminds me, I laughed out loud at the Dilbert strip a few days ago in which Dogbert was sending out spam offering a pill that would turn body fat into a Rolex watch. Scott Adams is a genius!

OK, back to Lantz. The reactions I’ve received have expressed curiosity as to why I “put up” with him, or signed with him in the first place. The anonymous comment asked, “What’s he in it for?”

Well, follow the money. I haven’t paid him a cent. Zip. Nada. So if he’s “using” me, I can’t figure out how. The contract I signed with him gives him exclusive representation rights on one novel for a year. But if six months go by and he’s not trying very hard to sell it (or becomes convinced it won’t sell) I imagine he let me cancel. Why not?

As for authors evaluating each others’ work, I didn’t find it offensive or burdensome. Evaluating other manuscripts did give me a better idea of some techniques that do or don’t work. He presented the idea as a way to help me improve my writing. Again, why not? Didn’t cost anything.

Now, if he used those evaluations to make a decision on whether or not to represent someone, then he’s relinquished a huge amount of control of his own business. I don’t see that happening.

Bottom line? He’s spent a lot of time “working” with me to get my manuscript in better shape, and I’m convinced it’s MUCH better than it was. In fact I’m embarrassed at how bad it was before my own ruthless editing, and my editor’s further work.

To me, all that remains to be seen is: does he try to sell it, and is he successful? If he at least tries, I’m still ahead of where I would have been.

Check into this blog from time to time (if you’re not already a committed daily reader!) and find out haw the saga goes.

By the way, he is a bit controversial. If you Google him you’ll find a discussion group in which he is alternately vilified and lionized. Finally he weighs in personally with a defense against the outrageous claims. I read through the entries bemused. All I would say to his detractors is what’s above. He’s never asked for nor been paid a penny from me. You might say, I’m getting what I’m paying for. Maybe. But since I’m not paying, (shrug).


Tisha from Texas said...

I read the posts as well. It bothered me at first, but after talking with Lantz and re-reading the hate filled posts, i realized there was less truth to them than I originally thought.
Have you ever googled yourself? I have and found most if not all of the results are about me - great ego booster as long as those PICS dont find their way onto the net...just kidding. I think.
BTW, I guess I should put my email on my blog. That was aimed at me, wasn't it?

Candace said...

Hi, I'm here via Tish's blog. I'm blogrolling you (already have her on mine. I'm on her blogroll as "Texas Landlady." I'll be looking for an agent soon. I hope yours works hard for you! I'm combing thru Jeff Herman's Guide to Book Publishers, Editors, & Literary Agents 2005. I'll get a copy of that self-editing book you mention. My own editing is going well, I think, but my first chapter is just awful -- too much back story. Now I'm thinking I need to sprinkle the back story here and there in the first few chapters. 'Trying to decide where and when... It's hard. I've already edited out all but the absolute minimum back info that the reader will need for the story. Anyway, good luck! I'll be checking back from time to time to see how you're doing.

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