Be An Agent!

Imagine you received a query letter from this guy.

His "sample pages" are at the top of the screen "click here to see an exerpt".

What would you say to him?
No bashing please, just put yourself in Miss Snark's stilettos and have at it.

(Thanks to Miss Hilarious for the email)


Pepper Smith said...

Wow. Took a moment for my eyes to uncross after trying to read that.

Thank you, Miss Snark. I think you just amply explained the need for the standard "Not right for me" rejection letter. I honestly wouldn't know what else to say to the guy.

Manic Mom said...

If I were an agent, and I'm assuming you did this, I wouldn't even bother to click onto the link to view the excerpt.


However, if I was a die-hard casino-goer, lived in Las Vegas, was out of Malboro Reds, had just finished my 40-ouncer Pabst Blue Ribbon, and had no change for the slot machine, well, then, maybe I might open the excerpt.

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

I don't see sample pages. I see something about high-stakes gambling. Where are the sample pages?

Cheryl Mills said...

I skimmed the foreward, glanced at the contents page, read two or three sentences of the introduction and them WHAM! He lost me in the first paragraph of Chapter One, where he let me know the very small number of people who might be interested in this book or find it remotely useful: Only those who have $100,000 that they can afford to lose.

"Sorry, the market for this book is not big enough."

Anonymous said...

Wow, he writes like my former boss talks. Responding to this type of thing is tough, whether you're alone on one side of a sprawling oak desk in tight shoes, or seated comfortably at a keyboard with moral support from Jack Daniels.

Agent X said...

Dear Sir or Madam,
How could I pass up a piece with so much to it? It's pure genius. A foreward AND and introduction? The longest table of contents I've ever seen? A plethora of bolded, underlined, and highlighted words?


On second thought, I regret to inform you that your work does not mesh well with what we look for at our company. Please keep us in mind in your future endeavors.

Agent X

Anonymous said...

I scanned the excerpt and thought it read like an infomercial, the kind you see at 2:00 a.m. when most sane people are asleep. The interesting thing about this document (loosely defined) is it might make money, but I don't see it as something a literary agent would want to handle. It also reminds me of the spam letters one gets from some wealthy Kenyan wanting your banking information so he can deposit several million into your (and the other millions of email recipients' accounts).

I guess I'd choose the not for me form letter without comment.

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Y –

Although I find your work intriguing, I am going to have to pass. I would, however, be interested in your application of ‘cutting-edge random events research’ to your query letter results.

Anonymous said...

My corporate web filter blocked the site to "protect me from its contents".

Maybe that's all one needs to say..?

Sha'el, Princess of Pixies said...

I clicked on that link. I still don't get anything but a blank .pdf page. No content. Dang it! I'm an Internet clutz!

Anonymous said...

To be helpful – he needs to realize who is target audience is and write for them. There is a reason all of the “ _________ for Dummies” books are written simply.

Agent speak: not right for me.

overdog said...

Yeah, "not for me." Sounds like someone I wouldn't want to open a dialogue with so I wouldn't say more.

I agree it sounds like an infomercial, or one of those "you, too, can be a writer!/model!/stockbroker!" letters that go on forever and don't tell you anything except "send $19.95" at the end. However, I'll bet he'll sell it. There's a glamorous angle people imagine with gambling--Monte Carlo, etc. But he needs a ghost writer.

The Rentable Writer said...

Dear Author:

We are sorry, but we cannot take on your work at this time, for it does not fulfill the requirements of writing we are currently seeking. Due to the amount of submissions we at The Quasi-Physical Geometric Fractular Calculus Review receive bi-centurally, we are absolutely overwhelmed with reading, and regret that we must send this impersonal reply.

To better understand the type of work we are looking for, return the attached subscription to the QPGFCR for only $1.09/issue, and be sure to check "subscriber."

Please keep us in mind for future work.

Best regards,

Kaavya Viswanathan

psswkajx said...

He sounds like a pain to work with, but if he gets that book out I bet he can make some bucks with it. Plus there's easy-to-get publicity and enormous possibilities for articles, sequels or new editions, etc. People love to think that a system can be beaten.

Meg said...

I didn't get past the copyright page. He needs to be hit with the clue stick.

Sonarbabe said...

I gave it a quick skim, yawned and beat a quick retreat to see what the comment trail had to say.

Survey says: Not right for me.

Anonymous said...

My real worry is that you've encouraged this person by sending people to his website

Minty Fresh

is my word verification (fihhsn) a new form of nuclear reaction?

theinadvertentauthor said...

Just reading the query letter and firt few pages has left me in need of a serious intervention!

theinadvertentauthor said...

"I clicked on that link. I still don't get anything but a blank .pdf page. No content. Dang it! I'm an Internet clutz!"

Try right-clicking and open in new window, or save target as. After the file saves, choose open. (Of course, you will need to have Adobe or some other PDF reader installed.)

Tori Scott said...

Dear Hopeful,

While your concept is most intriguing, it is not suitable for this agency at this time. Might I suggest you investigate the emerging e-book market, which might meet your publishing needs.

A quick brush-up class in comma usage might also be a good idea.


Agent don't call me, and I won't call you

Brooke said...

Not right for my list.

Anything else and he's liable to sic thugs on you. Must avoid thuggery.

Brooke said...

Oh: And how nice of him to write the front-matter for you. Now that's service!

Laurie said...

There was an excerpt on that page?

Yeah, I wouldn't have bothered with anything more than "Not right for me."

Richard Lewis said...

Well, actually, one of my layman's interests is in mathematics --yeah, yeah, I was one of those in school who loved the math homework -- and randomness is a major mathematical concept and area of study. So while I don't have $100,000 *I* thought the excerpt was interesting, and I would have read on.

But did he really send this as query? Miss Snark's wording is vague. Implied but not for sure.

Me, I'd think there'd be a niche market for this -- a niche that would be larger than just the mega rich. I would think that indeed somewhere is an agent who would be interested. Still, I'm only a writer with not a single number in my speed dial...

Inkwolf said...

I wouldn't have realized it was a query...just looked like an ad for a gamblng school to me.

Corn Dog said...

Dear Fractal,
While you may have learned to beat the odds at the crap table, you have not learned to beat the odds at Agency Central. I would like to give you some constructive criticism on your tome but the word "blather" is stuck in my frontal lobe. Not right for me on so many scales and perhaps not right for general consumption, in general.

My verification word was: m-pui-y...seriously

Ken Boy said...

I cannot represent your book as I am now dedicating my life to my CASINO BASHING PROGRAM!

Your pal (but not your agent),

Miss Snark

maedb said...

Dear Author,

Thank you for thinking of me, but I do not think I am best suited for this work. I would like to suggest you forward this manuscript as soon as possible to the one agent in the world qualified for this type and quality level of writing. Her name is Barbara Bauer and she can be reached via e-mail at xxxxxxx.

Anonymous said...

Someone better snap their fingers and count to three. I don't like being in Miss Snark's shoes. It's too just too much.

snark lover said...

Well Dearest Ms. Snark,

You have officially made it onto my Xmas list with unabashed appreciation!

With one "look at this weird person" posting you have caused more sincere interest in my book than I could have accomplished with a thousand query letters.

Your Pal,
but not your client,
Ben Yarbrough

Anonymous said...

Mr. Yarbrough:

Have you ever been arrested, accosted, or blacklisted from a casino for winning too much?

If so, please respond with times, dates, names of the casinos, and amounts won. If your track record checks out, then I will be in touch.

If not, please accept my best wishes for placing your manuscript elsewhere.


spaulson said...

maedb - Ouch!

My word verification was oxmbxnmu. Seriously.

Lydia said...

He talks about himself in the third person. Only a rejection in the third person would do. Then...sign it.

December Quinn said...

"Not right for me."

I wasn't interested in the concept, but thought if the execution was good it might be worth something-there's lots of small pubs out there who make bread and butter with this type of thing, at least it seems that way. But he lost me at the word "fractal".

becky said...

Did you guys see the "UPDATE" clicker thing. Hysterical. Say "Yarbourogh & his student Castillo (boxer guy) did not make final cut for "King of Vegas" then it reads "oh well"--check it out. Yeah--where do I sign up?

jude calvert-toulmin said...

There's nowt as queer as folk, as we say in Yorkshire.

I wouldn't know what to say to him, and wouldn't want to hazard a guess. I'm a writer, not an agent. Being an agent, from what I can gather, requires a particular skill set and experience, and is often a thankless task.

Regarding the guy concerned though, the mind does boggle at the seemingly limitless variety of human being in the world.

Thanks for the entertaining link.

Anonymous said...

Quite honestly, once I ignored the punctuation, capitalization, and first-person POV issues, side-stepped around the page ordering, chapter titles, and passive voice, and turned a blind eye to the overuse of scare quotes and underlining and boldface and highlighting and all caps, I did see some value in this type of work.

It's more likely to find a home in a small, niche market than enjoy huge commercial success, and with some work (substantive rewrites) it might be publishable someplace other than just online (as long as the book offers more salient gambling tips and anecdotes as opposed to "here's the story of why I'm so great and every casino is better because of me"). A market does exist. Think of those MIT students who banked thousands in Vegas. Math geeks are drawn to figuring out gambling, and if this book explains the math behind the system, it could do well. That's the potential for this sort of work. Squeezing into your stilettos, though, I'd have to say that the face value of these samples deems a definite pass.

Mazement said...

As far as I can tell, the book is intended to promote the $35,000 training course at http://www.baccarattraining.com/promo.html

So here's the response I'd use:

Dear Mr. Author Sir,

I see that you're trying to sell a "gambling system". Why, o why, did you pick something that can be easily debunked in a courtroom? And why are you charging enough money to make it worthwhile for your victims to sue you for fraud?

A quick rewrite would fix this. Just change the word "casinos" to "Darwinists", "gamblers" to "Creationists", and "money" to "moral values", and you've got a rock-solid manuscript to sell to the burgeoning Intelligent Design movement. Working title: "Exposing the Evolution Hoax with Fractal Logic". (The stuff about fractal logic is great, you won't need to change a word.)

If this is acceptable then I'll be overjoyed to represent you. Please send a cashier's check for $5,000 to cover the preliminary editing expenses.

We're going to be rich, rich, rich!


Lou Cypher
Licensed Literary Agent

Termagant 2 said...

Dear Author (?),

Since being shouted at is not one of my favorite pastimes, I suggest you return to the casino with a bucket of quarters. And no, I will not supply the gin.

Run, do not walk, to the nearest cyber-dustbin and put your MS therein.

Do not--repeat, do NOT--inflict your work on e-presses or small publishers either. They have enough to do with actual writers.

Best wishes on placing your--er--manuscript.

Miss Snark's Faithful Minion,

snark lover said...

Hey Lou,

Get a real job, or learn how better, to do the one you already have!

This book is about educating totally clueless people, like yourself--for a fraction of my normal fees, to either win in the casino or stay away. However, some may be beyond the simple act of learning. Are you a typical literary agent? If so, woe unto those daring to be innovative and offer the public some valuable
insight into this burgeoning casino industry, or any other industry for that matter.

I'm sure there really are some intelligent and creative literary agents (besides Ms. Snark) in the market who understand about the business side of re-educating the public.

Please note that I never once said what a half-wit you come across as.
Good upbringing I guess!

Ben Yarbrough

PS. My "real students" think I'm pretty good at what I do. Check out the Track record page. http://www.baccarattraining.com/track.html

Anonymous said...

Forget everything I said in the last post about being nice. I only made it to page 9. But,hey, the guy seems real excited. What can I say? I will say this: Being a big fan of Uncle Rhemus, I'd rather he left Brer Rabbit out of the whole Vegas gambling scenario.

Georgia Girl

Ray Goldensundrop said...

Dear Mr. Y,

You are SO not right for me. I am SO not right for you. We are matter and anti-matter. Guess who is whom.

Without regards, Agent R.

Rei said...

I see a bunch of mathematical claims made using generalizations. I don't see anything to back them up. Big red flag. There better be a defense of the claims in there somewhere.

Also, "a" correlation between certain events isn't good enough for gambling. It has to be significant enough to beat the inherent house advantage. Occasionally people do run into strong enough correlations -- for example, monitoring roulette wheels to determine their bias is known to work, although it's tough to pull off discretely. I seriously doubt the very slight amount of de-randomization that occurs in, say, blackjack players' decisions on whether or not to accept hits, reduced by the subsequent shuffles, beats the house advantage.

Agent X said...

If that's the real guy responding to this... ah hahahahahaha! I love when people come here to defend themselves. Oy.

Bernita said...

The latest in PR techniques?
Buzz a well-known blog?
I have to say it: Craps.

BarbJ said...

Sir -
Why are you trying to sell a book if you're making millions through bashing casinos? Does your system not work?
Sincerely, Puzzled (or without the comma)

I think I'll pass on the stilettos, stick to my sneakers, borrow K.Y.'s summer boater, and hope the bail bondsman is open...

Verification is "vtbaf", presumably short for "vitally baffled".

Mazement said...

OK, I don't want to get involved in a huge back-and-forth argument, so I'm just going to explain my reasoning:

1 - The manuscript's basic claim is that you can predict future baccarat hands based on the pattern of past hands. That's a classic example of the Gambler's fallacy. This is pretty basic and would make a good junior high science fair project.

2 - Claiming that you can use the Gambler's Fallacy to consistently beat the house at casino games is a lie.

3 - Selling a gambling system based on that lie is fraud.

4 - If you spend too much time defrauding people, then maybe one day you'll wake up and realize that you've forgotten how to earn an honest living. Then what will happen to you?

Rei said...


That's only true for truly random systems. If I'm getting the gist of this right, the argument is that it's not a truly random system. Every time a human choice is made (say, to get hit or not hit in blackjack), it biases the cards in favor of order. Every time a card merges during a shuffle, it biases the deck in favor of disorder. The deck that you're playing with isn't random. However, the author has to make a mathematically-defended case that the deck is sufficiently non-random enough to beat the house advantage -- something that I seriously doubt.

Another example of a case demonstrating the effect that decisions can have is the Monty Hall problem. If you've heard this one before, don't answer:

You're on "Let's Make a Deal". Monty presents you with three doors. Behind two of them are goats (gag prizes); behind the other is a brand new car. You obviously don't know which is which, but Monty does. He asks you to choose one. You choose one (obviously, at random). Monty opens one of the doors that you didn't choose in order to reveal a goat (he does this every time this game is played, so you know it's going to happen). He then gives you the opportunity to change your door to the one he didn't open.

Should you change? Does it matter? What are the odds of getting the car?

down_not_out said...

El boring-o.

He'll end up paying a vanity press after deciding all agents know nothing.

theinadvertentauthor said...


Mr. Yarbrough:

Your manuscript comes across as a bit too sterile, and over-confident. In addition, your target audience may not be sufficiently vulnerable enough to make this book the raging success you imagine. From one card snark to another, you may want to rethink your publication options altogether; late-nite infomercials may be the way to go here.

Best of Luck (no pun intended)

Lydia said...

>1 - The manuscript's basic claim is that you can predict future baccarat hands based on the pattern of past hands.

Actually, IF a dealer shuffles three times or less, many of the cards are still in the same order. That's no fallacy. Some 19th-century professional whist gamblers used this to their advantage. But there has to be a pretty high percentage paid out already to make a small advantage actually pay.

The mathematical nonsense is more amusing. MIT geeks wouldn't be tricked for a second by the faux-mathematical verbiage. "Fractal" doesn't have a thing to do with it. Statistics does. It doesn't sound as sexy, though. Not that Yarbrough knows anything about it, if he misuses terms that badly...

Bill E. Goat said...

Hey Rei, what do you mean "goats" are the gag prizes?????

Sherry Decker said...

I certainly would NOT click on the "sample pages." I'd say, If you're serious about submitting a manuscript for consideration, get serious enough to submit in the proper format.

Mazement said...

Rei and Lydia,

You're right that some casino games aren't completely random, and you can use that to shift the odds in your favor. (Card-counting at blackjack is the classic example, or the UCSC gimmick of timing roulette wheels with a hidden computer.) You can make a lot of money if you're the first person to come up with an idea, but the casinos will close the loophole as soon as they figure out what it is.

But the manuscript isn't offering that kind of loophole. It's clearly saying that you're supposed to look for patterns in the previous hands and to assume that the next hand will fit into that pattern. (See the last paragraph on page 14.)

snark lover said...

Hello my sad, tired, pseudo intellectual friends,

I am NOT surprised that you have dificulty keeping up with advances in mathematical theory, however, that is only half of the game one grapples with when walking in the doors of today's modern casino. Learning a great play approach only, is like learning to shoot a basketball, becoming very good at it, then being sent onto the floor to play against the Clippers. Sophmoric preparedness leads to short lived results.

What I am appaled by is your failure to seriously read the materials you so quickly jump to criticize. Now as to your eminant qualifications as literary judges, I laugh. Not at your ability to correct spelling and grammar --although some of you should check out your own posts-- but rather your ability to distinguish between the potentially significant and boringly passe.

In any event, I have always heard that winning a blog/bulletin board argument is akin to winning the blue ribbon in a Special Olympics race. Certainly a distinction I will cede to those of you more beligerantly inclined and more easily gratified than myself.

I do, very much, thank Miss Snark for allowing the posts of a lowly author to be viewed here. In this regard and obviously others, she is indeed, a most unique individual. It has been my pleasure.

Very Best Regards,
Ben Yarbrough

Snark--email me your address, your promised addition to my Xmas list was and is sincere.

snark lover said...

Hello my angry, and certainly gifted friends,

With logic that earns him the "Higher Math Dunce Cap"
Lou has determined that he is the expert that others claim me to be. Perhaps his searching for answers should be on "Google Scholar" instead of just plain Google.

Generally to MOST of the agents posting here, I am NOT surprised that you have dificulty keeping up with advances in mathematical theory, however, what I am appalled by, is your failure to intelligently read "with comprehension", the materials you so quickly jump to criticize--and in many cases fail to read at all.

Obviously not all literary agents are equally gifted. Now as to your eminant qualifications as literary judges, I am dubious. Not at your ability to correct spelling, grammar, and perhaps even syntax, but rather your ability to distinguish between the potentially significant and boringly passe, the marketable and the dust collecting rest.

In any event, I have always heard that winning a blog/bulletin board argument is akin to winning the blue ribbon in a Special Olympics race. Certainly a distinction I will cede to those of you more beligerantly inclined and more easily gratified than myself.

I do, very much, thank Miss Snark for allowing my posts to be viewed here. In this regard and obviously others, she is indeed, a most unique individual.

Very Best Regards,
Ben Yarbrough

Snark PS. Does the "insect reference" refer to the location of your apartment overlooking the park?

Holly said...

Dear Author,

I regret that I can not get behind this project, nor even in front of it, since--much like my patience--your bandwidth has been exceeded.

AzGhostWriter said...

Sorry but your link is broken. I received this message tonight:

Bandwidth Limit Exceeded
The server is temporarily unable to service your request due to the site owner reaching his/her bandwidth limit. Please try again later.

Sounds a tad familar.

snark lover said...

Miss Snark,

Since you haven't granted my request to remove the libelous post to your
blog, I am going to have to assume that you really don't know if Lou/Mazement
is right and I'm full of it? So you choose to believe a fellow "literary agent" rather than a recognized authority in this field, OR you simply don't read this email very often.

What do I mean by recognized authority?

-Have you read the Newspaper/Magazine articles on my site?
-Have you googled "Benjamine Yarbrough" and found me on a list of
mathematicians being quoted?
-Have you read, both in the newspaper article excerpted on my site, and the testimonials of High Stakes gamblers who have used my training?
-When I took my math genius son to Kyoto Japan last year, I introduced
him to a world class mathematician with whom I am acquainted named Jan Willems who was working on a secret mathematics project at the University of Kyoto with several other top mathematicians from around the world.
If you go to my site you will on the "about your coach" page see a link to articles about my son. One of these articles documents our trip to Japan and his meeting with Jan Willems. Do you think I could carry on a conversation with such an eminant authority if I didn't know a Heck of a lot more about the
subject of math and gambling than "Lou" will ever in 10 lifetimes learn?

I charge $35,000 to spend 3 days training a client, and $2,700 for a single copy of my training package. Do you think the very wealthy people I deal with would allow me to "continue living and prospering in my field", if I were giving them "bad" rather than "good" and beneficial training? REALITY CHECK!

Do I know what I\'m talking about? You better believe I do!

Now, again PRETTY PLEASE, remove this libelous "off proscribed topic half-witted" post.

Trying to be civil,

snark lover said...

Literary Agent
"Gambler's Fallacy"? do you realize just how "challenged" it is to state that events in a random event scenario are "not related". This garbage is what the casinos and their math consultants have been spouting for over half a century. It is not only "old math" it is "very old math". In fact, "Gambler's Fallacy" is the stuff of Junior High Science projects TODAY. Using a fractal approach to gaining insights into Random events is something else again. Try searching on "Google Scholar" rather than just on Google, that is, if you want to keep up.

Now because you have not kept up with today's current knowledge about math and gambling, does that mean that you are mentally challenged, and if you are mentally challenged, does that mean that you are scaming your boss out of the monthly salary he pays you, and if you are doing that, then aren't you really a low crook who needs to be put in Jail for stealing.

Just following and copying the logic you posed in your post on Gambler's fallacy.

Am I a liar or a fraud?

-Have you read the endorsement letter of my skills from Richard Lofink (creator of the casino game "Spanish 21" which is displayed on my website).

I charge $35,000 to spend 3 days training a client, and $2,700 for a single copy of my training package. Do you think the very wealthy people I deal with would allow me to "continue living and prospering in my field", if I were giving them "bad" rather than "good" and beneficial gambler training?

How much would these people pay for Charles' gambling advice? 35 cents? No Thanks!

Eric Rosenfield said...

You crashed his bandwidth!

snark lover said...

I see you have left the libelous post in place (the one mentioning gambler's fallacy) and refused to post my reply to it. The one that exposes mazement as the "High school knowledge" gambling wannabe.

This, of course, means war.

As a first step,
I will start by today purchasing the domain "sillysnark.com" or some such, and seeing if any of your previous victims are interested in managing it's daily slamming of YOU in a forum where you have no chance to reply to your detractors. When it comes to such things, "I do not play".

Last chance, remove his libelous post and display my reply to this thread. Fair enough?

I will check this site again by noon today EASTERN TIME.

snark lover said...

I'm sure you'll get a kick out of the funny "Stiletto Snark Webcam"
site. http://www.highstakesplayer.net/sillysnark.html

I've created an adwords account which will display a link to this site every time someone does a search for "snark". Trust me, it only gets better and better.

In the midst of the word he was trying to say,
In the midst of his laughter and glee,
He had softly and suddenly vanished away---
For the Snark *was* a Boojum, you see.

You know of course that in addition to being a dreaded writer who was very likely scorned by the small minded critics of his day, Lewis Carrol was a mathematician.

Now, please remove that libelous post, and insert the reply I Gmailed you.

NĂ© said...

Dear Mr. snark lover ,
You were never so damned, but for the words that fell from your own fingertips while visiting this blog.
Please practice some yoga, and meditate on spreading love and kindness. Your liver will thank you.
--- OHM ---

Anonymous said...

Snarklover - I am prepared to form an alliance.

Meet me outside Nicole Aragi's office at midnight.

blaironaleash said...

I'm not going to criticise. I'm very prone to excess verbiage, unnecessary and umimpressive obscurantism, malapropisms and run-on sentences myself.

I know how to spell and when to capitalize, though. And after getting absolutely rat-arsed in front of my SO's family last weekend, I can tell you I know when I've made a fool of myself.

BarbJ said...

Yarborough - One realizes from your posts that your arrogance transcends any rebukes from lesser beings, which presumably includes myself and every person who doesn't agree with you.

However, I take strong exception to your insult to the winners of the Special Olympics. If you actually worked with those children who are striving for that achievement, you might show a trifle more respect.

In fact, I would recommend it. You appear to need a dose of reality. And your web site really is bad.

boo said...

he had me at avant garde science.

Daisy said...

Flashback! Remember all the fun we had with the fake agents and how they kept coming back with unrelated defenses and vague threats, instead of defending their position with hard data? Good times.

Anonymous said...

maedb said...
[There is] one agent in the world qualified for this type and quality level of writing. Her name is Barbara Bauer.

Ben Y.'s very BB-esque tone and threats and flighty use of claiming libel can only lead me to belive that he took your post to heart. Sad times.

All the Snarks down in Snarkville,
the tall and the small,
Don't care for your whining,
nope, don't care at all.

Anonymous said...

Snark Lover -

I don't get all the anger against Miss Snark. Her question was on writing rejections and she specifically asked for no bashing. If you don't like what an individual has to say, get mad at them. Miss Snark doesn't deserve your fury.

I've noticed that there is a lag between my submitting a comment and it being posted; it isn't personal against you.

That being said, retaliation efforts generally backfire when used against someone with a stellar reputation. For a recent example in the publishing world, read up on Barbara Bauer and AbsoluteWrite. Miss Snark even posted on it.

Anonymous said...

As of 12:26 GMT, four hours after the posted threats, I see no such result in any web search, and the retaliation page http://www.highstakesplayer.net/sillysnark.html
produces a 404 not found error. I take this as an encouraging sign, much like the Iranian rapproachment of the security council's anti-nuke offer.

Mr. Yarborough and MS, please hasten talks to heal the real-world v. blogosphere rift so we can return to our regularly scheduled snarking.

BertGrrrl said...

Dear Asspiring Writer;

I note that in your Forward (or possibly the Introduction) you mention that in order to take advantage of your revolutionary gambling system, a wannabe needs a cool $100 grand that (as you explain) he need not be worried about losing.

My concern for your proposal’s commercial viability hinges on this fact. The exigencies of the publishing world demand that a wide audience exist for any project, and yet--though I have been sitting here scratching both my head and lower regions for some time--I realize to my chagrin that I personally don’t know anyone who would meet your basic requirements (i.e., that extra $100,000 sitting around collecting dust).

I can only imagine, however, how very, very rich you must be as a result of your wondrous gambling system, what with the fractals and the equations and the utter non-randomness of the entire seemingly-but-evidently-not-so-dumb-ass universe and such.

Sooooooooooo, what occurs to me is this: why not include $100,000 in clean fresh bills inside each copy of your book? (The books would need to be shrink-wrapped, of course.) Think about it--that way everyone who purchases it automatically qualifies as a High Roller! You've got your audience, and we're all now rich! Yippee!!

Now, goeth thee, and don’t be shy about using this concept, distilled from my thousands and thousands of years of experience (for I am Snark, and I am immortal) and my innate marketing genius in order to pitch your book, blessedly, elsewhere.

Please leave my presence groveling backward,

Miss Snark

Rei said...

Miss Snark:

I suddenly have a great deal of pity for those in your line of work, and fully understand why you no longer send comments along with rejections.

Snark Lover:

I love how:

A) Half of your posts are cut and pastes of each other. This "repeating yourself" attitude is obvious in your work as well.

B) You always seem to fall back on threats of "libel". Sorry, hon, but I think you need to read up on what libel is. The person accused must have acted with malice and the knowledge of falsehood or otherwise reckless disregard for the truth. It's quite obvious that there was no malice (the person doesn't even know you, so there's no way that there could be "malice"), and the poster obviously believed firmly in what they claimed. It's not even in the slightest bit libelous, so stop making yourself look like an litigious fool if you want to get any degree of respect here.

C) Your name gets a whopping twelve hits on google. I am oh so impressed. I should add that my name gets 1,050 hits and I'm not delusional enough to call myself an expert in anything. Please quit trying to pretend to have any degree of fame or professional esteem.

D) Your retype of the first article that I checked starts off pretty bad. The reporter for the Ledger-Enquirer is "Larry Gierer", not "Larry Geiger". The article that follows is completely and utterly different from what he wrote -- in fact, just the opposite. According to the Ledger-Enquirer's website, the article begins:

"It's a good bet that few local people are going to find Ben Yarbrough's Web site useful.. High stakes baccarat players are likely as rare in the Chattahoochee Valley as snowshoes. Even those who fit that description might balk at dropping a hefty chunk of change on the chance that Yarbrough's advertised system will improve their game.. The "Baccarat War Room" (www.baccarattraining.com) he operates doesn't originate in"

[quote]When I took my math genius son to Kyoto Japan last year, I introduced
him to a world class mathematician with whom I am acquainted named Jan Willems who was working on a secret mathematics project at the University of Kyoto with several other top mathematicians from around the world.[/quote]

I'll be in Kyoto three weeks from now. ;) I'll look him up!

Nihongo ga dekimaska? Wakatte nara kyoto daigaku ekaite kudasai.

[quote]If you go to my site you will on the "about your coach" page see a link to articles about my son.[/quote]

Your genius son thinks that Nagoya is south of Tokyo? South of Tokyo (assuming you skip over Chiba) is ocean and a few small volcanic islands.

[quote]One of these articles documents our trip to Japan and his meeting with Jan Willems[/quote]

No, it says that your son *met* with him, no more. In fact, it strangely uses a different typeface, a strange clipping shape, and an obvious paste line.

[quote]Do you think the very wealthy people I deal with would allow me to "continue living and prospering in my field", if I were giving them "bad" rather than "good" and beneficial training? REALITY CHECK![/quote]

Because one sucker is a year's salary.

[quote]Do I know what I\'m talking about? You better believe I do![/quote]

You don't even know what a fractal is. The term you're looking for is "chaotic systems"

Here, lets just do a very basic proficiency test to see if you even know the fundamentals of what you're claiming to be talking about.

1) d/dt f(t) = t; solve for f(t).

2) Take three equidistant corner points and a "drawing point" that can be anywhere. Randomly choose corners and make the drawing point shift its position to the average of its current location and the chosen corner. Draw a point at the current location. Repeat ad infinitum. What shape do you converge to? What type of system is this? What is the shape called when you use the 8 corner points of a cube in 3-space?

3) Demonstrate the usage of the Daubechies wavelet transform.

4) What metric do we live in?

[quote]Trying to be civil,[/quote]

Trying to be civil doesn't involve accusations of libel, which is a legal term.

Mark said...

It is an infomercial. Maybe Vigliano would go for it?

Anonymous said...

snark lover, this blog is all about learning what to do and what not to do, but all done tongue in cheek. We were the ones who broke the rules by bashing, after Miss Snark told us not to. Don't jump on her. We were just having a bit of fun, unfortunately at your expense as we never expected you to actually show up or learn of our snarking.

You obviously have a niche market--albeit a small one, I would imagine. How many people can afford those prices? But an agent is looking for books they can sell to publishers, not to individuals, and this posting was about how we thought an agent might respond to a query from you.
You might want to see if you can find where you lost your sense of humor.

And I agree with Tori who said you need to learn proper comma placement. Not using proper grammar lessens your effect.

Ken Boy said...

Ben Y,

I read your whole site, including the sample pages of your book. I don't see where you claim to have ever accomplished anything (other than winning less than $10,000 during an entire year at one casino -- your income tax return would tell a more complete story). Why is that? Or have I misread your web pages?

You do give some good, standard gambling advice, like set a loss limit and don't play drunk. Well done.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Is there even a market for such a boring book? I mean, I know there are gamblers out there...but the fact that they normally lose everything leads me to believe many of them don't read well (why would they gamble if they had the education to make their own money?), hence the LACK of any audience for book that seems to also involve math calculations. Now, should this guy condense it into a pocket-sized "tip-book," clean up the craft and make it readable, it may be sellable...to the random idiot interested in playing a game he or she obviously has no experience in...or why buy it in the first place? It's a conundrum says I!

Anonymous said...

What I'm confused about is why this person (whacko came to mind but I will refrain) is willing to "sell" his method so cheaply in a book. I would think he would keep his "secret method" to himself and make a killing at the casinos.

So, he would make more at his seminars and selling books than beating the odd at a casino?

It doesn't add up.


chuckle -- word verification - mahap