Remember the agent I talked about in a previous post--the one who charges a $3,200 service fee for a year of representation, and in the nearly 10 years her agency has existed has never sold any books to commercial publishers? Well, I just discovered that she has bought a membership in Publishers Marketplace, and has put up a fairly professional-looking page there (if, of course, you ignore the fact that no sales are mentioned).
Publishers Marketplace is a very popular site, and many writers use it as an integral part of their search for publication. I often recommend it as a research tool--it has much valuable information about agents' backgrounds, track records, interests, and philosophy. It is (justifiably) regarded as a very reliable resource. It really bugs me to think that a total scam artist like this agent will benefit from that reputation--that writers who've just finished looking at the listings for Manus & Associates and Donald Maass and Sandra Dijkstra and Simon Lipskar may assume that this agent is on the same professional level.
And no, she's not the only questionable or amateur agent who's a member of PM. With one exception, however, she is (by many orders of magnitude) the most dishonest.
I guess the moral of this story is always double-check. NEVER take an agent listing at face value--or at any rate, don't assume that just because an agent is listed by a reputable resource, the agent him/herself is reputable.
In better news, my husband's knee surgery last week went very well. The stitches came out a couple of days ago, and he's already walking more or less normally (though not normally enough, apparently, to go downstairs and make his own lunch. I humored him today, but his free lunch coupon runs out this Sunday). Lots of physical therapy lies ahead, but everyone seems to feel he'll make a full recovery.