When agents are good they are really, really good. But when agents are bad they are horrid.
Author Bill Bryson Takes Agent to Court | The Passive Voice
“This action arises from Fred Morris’s misconduct and profound neglect of his duties as the literary agent of author Bill Bryson,” the complaint states. “For a period of years, Morris, acting as JMI, failed to perform some of the most fundamental duties of an agent. He failed to remit royalties he received for Bryson; he failed to forward draft contracts he received for Bryson to review and sign; and he stonewalled inquiries from publishers and from his own client, denying them basic information. Morris hid his failures and misconduct while they were undermining Bryson’s livelihood and reputation. When Bryson began to uncover the derelictions, Morris cut off contact with him.
”Despite having abandoned his responsibilities as Bryson’s literary agent, and despite Bryson’s revocation of the agency, Morris has insisted, through attorneys he engaged, that JMI is entitled to continue collecting a commission of fifteen percent of Bryson’s earnings on the very works Morris has neglected.
“In addition, Morris has refused to honor Bryson’s repeated requests for an independent accounting. Instead, Morris purported to perform an accounting of his own, which was incomplete, riddled with errors and patently unreliable.