Jeff Rivera of Galleycat, who wrote the post that Miriam linked to yesterday and a response to Miriam's response, asked us to post the following open letter. Since our commentary on his post spurred so much interest here, we're happy to oblige:
Dear DGLM Community:
I enjoyed reading your blog posting on November 10, 2009, responding to my post on GalleyCat entitled, Literary Agents, bah! Who Needs Them? I thought your response was valid, respectful and you made excellent points in it. I read your blog fairly regularly and enjoy your other posts as well.
I also read through every one of your readers' comments, including those who referred to me or my post as "stupid", "idiot" or "horrifying".
I was rather taken aback by the stir my post caused on the internet on both sides of the fence as well as its follow-up piece yesterday entitled, Literary Agents React!. I received an equal amount of support letters as well as letters of debate.
I invite those critical of my post to re-read it and they may notice that not once in the post did I ever state my personal opinion was that literary agents were not needed. Rather, I only posed a question that I believe we ought to ask, a question many of my friends, both authors and literary agents have asked. I then asked for an open discussion which I believe is healthy for our community of writers, literary agents and other book publishing professionals to have.
The post provided two professionals who were pro and two professionals that were con. If I wanted to state my personal opinion, the post would have been entitled an op-ed piece.
My personal opinion, for the record, is that of course there will always be a need for literary agents. We need someone with a good eye for what is good and enjoyable literature, and who has keen sense of what readers really want to read.
However, I am open hearing from those who believe the opposite, that there will not be a need for literary agents. And, I would never refer to those who differ from my personal opinion as "stupid" or "idiot."
The title of the blog along with the illustration of Scrooge, and his coin term "bah, humbug", I hoped would clue readers in that the title was done tongue-in-cheek and not to be taken seriously.
My job as a correspondent at GalleyCat is only to provide an open forum to question the way we have done business for over a hundred years and to ask the questions many of our readers have asked themselves but did not have an opportunity to ask in a public way.
I do apologize if some readers found the post offensive but once again, I invite them to re-read it with an open mind. I look forward to hearing all opinions and I thank you for this opportunity to respond to the DGLM readers, of which I am one.
Correspondent at GalleyCat
(This note is a personal open letter, not representative in any way as the official word of Mediabistro or GalleyCat)