(BE-EFFING-WARE!! THEY ARE EVIL AND ONLY WANT YOUR SOUL AND $$)
The link took you to a buy page: pay $49 and Publish America (my fingers burn to type it) will show your book to J.K. Rowling and "ask her what she thinks."
To me, this just sounds insane. Completely implausible. But I empathize with writers, and I sort of see how PA gets people. The suggestion that something might get an author published is a powerful thing.
I know this, too, because I see so many queries that start out "I self-published with _____ but the experience was not what I expected (or) I am disappointed (or) they totally jerked me around." And my heart goes out to these people! Because often that project is shot--without serious sales numbers (5K+) an agent will have a very difficult time leveraging a self-pubbed book for print sale.
So I want to ask you guys. What offers entice you/your compatriots to pay the $49, to sign a contract without representation? Is it resentment toward the Publishing Establishment? Snazzily worded pitches from the self-pub companies? What value do you see in the self-publishing world, in having to do it all on your own??
Further, what do you want to know from the Publishing Establishment? Does it make sense that agents cite such a high number of sales before a self-pubbed project is valuable for the traditional publishing world?
My instinct is that there was a lot of "Eff the Man" talk about a year ago. The sad stories I'm seeing in my inbox now are the result of the early adopters of self-publishing getting burned; the backlash. I feel now that there's a more cautious view of self-publishing: that it's a dangerous, potentially career-harming move if not done correctly, with a lot of back-end work. But then I still get emails asking what the point of an agent is...so I dunno.