Here is one reason why I think Lit Agents have no clue . . .

A writer finally gets his big break.  And AFTER 54 Lit Agents passed on his novel.  As far as I am concerned, this is a perfect example of how lit agents look for clones of clones that have proven they sell--and absolutely nothing else.

 

And those 54 agents--probably the same ones that are listed everywhere.  Ones that almost all of us have contacted repeatedly.  And the very same ones that keep saying 'No thanks.'

http://www.politicsdaily.com/2010/08/06/after-54-book-agents-said-n...

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This is not about agents or publishers, but it's related. Related in that few people are willing to take risks.
http://www.popeater.com/2010/08/10/michael-moore-hollywood-movies/
Michael Moore citing the Swedish film on THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO as an example of a smart film doing well is a bit disingenuous. That did well because the book is a major bestseller and because presumably it contains scenes of sexual sadism.
I don't think he tried hard enough. Fifty-four is not enough rejections. I think around 120 rejections on a manuscript is more like it. Still, getting an agent is difficult, but not impossible if the material is good.

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