Sunday, February 11, 2007

Ye Gods!

from a collection of carved New Guinea gods
belonging to sculptor Karl Stirner.
- photograph by C.T.Bogert.

My office still houses an odd and idle collection of objects from my former occupation as an occultologist - Africian and native devil masks, an athame, a ganesha, a set of antlers, statuettes and charms, witch balls and ritual items - shoved here and there on the bookshelves.
Articles and agents from many cultures and belief systems which reflect the human need for divination, propitiation, and protection.
It was a fascinating time.
A demon protector - a barong - toothy in red and gold, still hangs above my printer.
And there's the supercillious frog atop a gazing ball that my husband bought me.
Someone also sent me once a voodoo doll as a joke.
Of course, I have never used it. My mind doesn't work that way.
And, fortunately, my few contacts with the powers-that-be in the industry have been cordial, if remote.
From reading comments on industry blogs, it would appear the factor that might most impel a bitter writer to impliment some arcane agency is the lack of communication.
An obvious irony, I suppose.
Yet it is a constant lament.
No response to queries. Too often, no response to requested partials and fulls.
A lack of response to legitimate correspondence - even after signing as a client - which is a gaping absence I find most difficult to understand from professionals.
The supplicant writers in these positions have no recourse. None.
Except to polish a few straight pins.


Erik Ivan James said...

Much business is lost due to "lack of responsiveness", especially in professional services. How much effort does it take to say to the waiting party; "Response: Ain't got one, yet."? It keeps business.

December Quinn said...

There are much better spells to try to get someone to communicate with you, before you go for the big, painful guns. :->

Bernita said...

When an agency has already invested in a writer, I don't understand it, Erik.

I'm assuming those have already been tried, December.

Ric said...

This is why aspiring authors are so anxious to send money to the scammers - they will answer, they will return calls (at least until they've sucked you dry).

An unresponsive agent, into whose hands you've entrusted your masterwork, would be truly a living nightmare.

Anonymous said...

From my last trip to New Orleans I have a few voodoo dolls in the closet. I will be willing to donate if you feel the need for more.

Fascinating post Bernita
and you! with all these hidden talents
damn blogger! after the 4th try this is anna

Bernita said...

One of the reasons why they say no agent is better than a bad agent, I suppose, Ric.

Thank you for hanging in there, Anna.
Use them on Blogger!

EA Monroe said...

I always preferred the big old fashioned hat pins.

Bernita said...

Overkill, Elizabeth.

spyscribbler said...

Frustrating, frustrating, frustrating. It's a strange line to walk: one when you have your pick of clients, and yet, in the end, you do work for them. It can be an awkward dance.

Rashenbo said...

I got my mother a voodoo doll when we were in south Louisiana in November :) Nice collection of statues there!

Bernita said...

Common courtesy would make that line clearer, Natasha.

I can understand why people collect them, Rashenbo.

writtenwyrdd said...

That must have been a fascinating job! I have studied a number of alternative religions as a practitioner, and I think the most interesting books on them have always been either memoir living-the-life books or the ones written by the anthropologist types.

Bernita said...

It was, Written.
And a nodding acquaintance with anthropology was useful.