Literary agencies becoming publishers? Screw that trend. PublishAmerica, always a trail blazer, is swinging the other way.
The email from which I've quoted below was sent out today by the PA "Author Support Team." (All bolding is PA's.) Just imagine the hearts that are leaping and the pulses that are pounding at the sight of the title:
From: email@example.comAuthors are encouraged to visit www.publishamerica.net/MyAgent.html, where they discover that, to take advantage of this matchless opportunity, they must fork over $199.
To: [email address redacted]
Subj: A literary agent wants to talk to you
PublishAmerica now has a Literary Agency department.
Sign up, and we will market your book to big ticket publishers such as Random House, Simon and Schuster, HarperCollins, Penguin, the new Amazon publishing company, but also university presses and independent publishers, and to a host of foreign publishers all over the world. We also work with Hollywood studios and producers...
Over the past year, while attending trade shows all over the nation and in foreign countries, we have built a very extensive Rolodex with industry contacts. We have talked to so many publishers at home and abroad, and to so many agencies and movie producers that today we feel confident that our Literary Agency can make a serious difference for our authors...Most authors are not very good sales people, least of all when it comes to selling themselves. Therefore most books need an agent if and when an author seeks to find greener pastures for their book.
Sign up today, and have an agent for your book tomorrow!
The fact that PA has an exclusive claim on authors' print and digital rights does pose a bit of a hurdle in terms of licensing--for those big-ticket US publishers, anyway--but never mind, we aren't supposed to be thinking logically here.
PublishAmerica, fee-charging literary agent. I only wonder why it took this long!