Friday, October 23, 2009

Still Looking For An Agent? Did You Try The Men's Room?

What follows is a true story.  Despite my best efforts, I could not prevent it.

After lunch, my friend Joe wanted to stop by ABC Agency's office in Miami.  I'd given up trying to convince him it wasn't how a professional writer goes about seeking representation.
"None of that other shit works," Joe said.  "Sometimes you gotta walk in and say, 'Hey, I'm  here.'  Who gives a fuck?"
Joe's always been a delicate flower.
He was dressed in a fine white linen suit when I dropped him off in front of the building.
"You're not coming in with me?" he asked.
"I want no part of this," I said.  And I didn't want them knowing who I was.
"Suit yourself Buddy," said Joe.  "You gonna find a place to park?"
"I'm gonna drive around the block one time," I said.  "You should be back by then."
I drove around the block two times.  Joe was waiting at the curb.
"I got off the elevator and there was no one there," Joe explained.  "There was a phone, an empty desk.  Nobody.  I tried opening a couple doors but they were all locked.  I really tried, Buddy."
"Oh well," I said.  "I didn't think--"
"Then I heard a toilet flush, so I went into the restroom."
"You did what?"
"That door was locked too.  I had to force my way in."
"To the men's room?"
He nodded.
"There was a guy standing there--"
"He was standing?  Not sitting?" I asked.
"Yeah, but you know, he was...So I said, 'Are you with ABC Agency?' and the guy said 'yeah.'  He's probably thinking, 'Who the fuck is this motherfucker?' but he said 'How'd you get in here?'  I told him 'I just walked in,' and then I said 'I'm a writer and I'm looking for representation.  I wrote a memoir about Vietnam and a novel about the hunt for terrorists."  Joe started laughing pretty hard.  "The motherfucker asked if I was special ops, so I said, 'Yeah, now who can I give this manuscript to?'"
I, of course, pictured this poor schlep with his pants around his ankles, cowering as the big burly wierdo accosted him.
"Well," I said.  "Sorry you wasted your time."
"Yeah, fuck you Buddy," Joe said, tossing the guy's business card in my face.  "I'm gonna email him tonight.  He said he'd read it and forward it to the right people in New York."

Success?  Stay tuned...


Adriana Tanese-Nogueira said...

Hi Matt, this time I came in and I read this delicate piece of yours... Funny and surrealistic. Is this guys "our" Joe? Because it looks likes...
I learned some more English this afternoon!

Matt said...

Hi Adriana!

That is "our Joe". Good God. I hope you're not learning english from him. I wondered if people that knew him, not quite the way I do, would be shocked.

I'm so glad you're here. I want more followers.

Susan R. Mills said...

Are you serious???? Is this really true? What a great story!

Matt said...

This was my afternoon. The more I write about my life, and the people in it, the more vanilla I seem.

Matt said...

Oh, and thanks for stopping by Susan. I've been reading your blog, and I really like it. I especially like some of your early posts about the want for followers. I'm there. I need that validation. So thanks.

Erica said...

LOL! That's crazy and hilarious.

Small aside- For me, it's a little hard to read the white letters on the black background. As much as I love it! My eyes have white spots in them as I write this post! I'm sorry. It won't stop me from reading your blog. I just wanted to let you know.

Love the dialogue exchange. So funny and just thinking about the dude in the bathroom. SO funny!

Lost Wanderer said...

That's one hell of a story. Though no doubt there will always be few odd cases where people get agents in the weirdest way. After all, agents are humans. They are not always going to stick to their own rules.

Matt said...


Just put up with it til Halloween, then I'm going back to my normal template.

Matt said...

Okay Erica. Is orange any better?

Jm Diaz said...

HAHAHAHAHA! Awesome... just awesome!! Man I hope it works out for you bud. Best of luck.

Erica said...

Aw. I'm flattered! Yes I Love, Love the orange :)

This post was so funny. I was thinking about it well after I read it :)

Julie Dao said...

HA! It's interesting how things work out sometimes. Just goes to show you that you can be lucky and be in the right place at the right time - even if it means the men's room while your quarry is utilizing the urinal. Great post! Looking forward to an update.

Traci said...

LOLOLOL - great story! That sort of thing always happens to me (watching OTHER people get success through weird/atypical channels).

Erica said...

Hey Matt- I want to feature your blog on my blog on Monday- are you cool with that. I would use your profile info and provide a link. What do you think. It's something I'm going to start on Monday's I think... Let me know :)

Matt said...

Cool Erica. Sorry I'm late. I'm in Las Vegas dealing with jetlag.

Erica said...

No problem :) Las Vegas! Behave!! LOL

Wendy Sparrow said...

He is a delicate flower. I feel sorry for the poor agent who has to carry around business cards in his pocket to the bathroom... just in case.

I have heard of this happening at conferences frequently, though.

Mel said...

Joe was lying to you.

First of all, as Wendy said--the agent carries business cards with him into the bathroom? I don't think so.

Second of all, it's such a cliché story. How many movies & TV shows have you seen where a guy gets accosted at a urinal? It's a common joke now, and an easy story to make up on the spur of the moment.

Thirdly, the agent would "forward it to the right people in New York"? What agent talks like that, outside of the movies?

What probably happened was that Joe went into the office and the agent refused to see him. So he grabbed a business card off the receptionist's desk and made up a BS story so you couldn't chortle and say, "I told you so."