How the late Clive Cussler got himself a literary agent.

Adventure novelist Clive Cussler died February 24th. He was 88.

The Washington Post’s Hillel Italie wrote an obituary, which appeared on February 26th.

We all know how hard it can be to get published. Mr. Cussler, being a novelist, found a novel way to get a literary agent. Mr. Italie wrote:

Mr. Cussler finished manuscripts for “The Mediterranean Caper” and “Iceberg” but had no literary agent: So he created one. He purchased a thousand sheets of blank letter paper, got a friend in advertising to design a logo for “The Charles Winthrop Agency” and sent his first inquiry to Peter Lampack of the William Morris Agency. Lampack agreed to take on Mr. Cussler and remained with him long after the author confessed his charade.

“I told him the story of Charlie Winthrop with great trepidation,” Mr. Cussler explained to the Arizona Republic. “I sat there waiting for the result, and he sat there blank for a minute, and then he laughed himself under the table. And he said, ‘Oh my God. I always thought Charlie Winthrop was some guy I met while I was drunk at a cocktail party.’ ”

Mr. Lampack wasn’t the only one who laughed himself under the table!

Here’s the original article.

About Michael McKown

Journalist, specialty magazine editor/publisher for 22 years, entrepreneur, co-founder of America's largest working dog organization, producer/director, and co-founder of Ghostwriters Central in 2002.