Day By Day

Friday, May 18, 2012

Thoughts on the agent

Via Powerline, posted on the Facebook account of Tom Lipscomb:
IF YOU WANT A LITERARY AGENCY THAT WILL LIE FOR YOU OUTRAGEOUSLY TRY DYSTEL AND GOEDERICH

A limp statement was squirted out yesterday after the Breitbart item appeared that a woman who worked at the time as a low level assistant at Acton and Dystel, then Obama’s agent (and is now the Goederich who is Dystel’s partner) was now taking full responsibility for making an “error.”

As someone who has run a number of top bestseller publishers, I think this is an amazing MIRACLE.

It is the ONLY case I have ever heard of in which an editorial assistant INVENTED a biographical detail. I have heard of typos, wrong dates, misspellings of names. But to pick a really weird country of origin like Kenya for an author?

NEVER.

After all where do the bios come from? We don’t make them up. And neither did Dystel & Goederich. They come from the authors, like Obama. No one has ever invented a detail like that, and the authors usually review them and scream like hell if we get them wrong.

Can Dystel and Goedrich show us the correction appeal letter they got from Obama about the Kenya birth in over 10 years of using this bio? Or any other incident from any other publisher or agent that is similar to this “error?”

I really don’t care where Obama was born. The continued degeneration of the press in passing on hilarious nonsense as fact is a lot more serious problem. Give Dystel & Goederich the Rose Mary Woods Memorial Award for the Most Absurd Lie to Protect a President of the Year.

Thomas Lipscomb
Senior Fellow
Annenberg Center for the Digital Future (USC)

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