December 1-15, 2005 Edition

50 Cent’s Agent

Says Gawker’s

Criticism Unfair

NEW YORK, NY/11/25/05—Marc Gerald, literary agent for Rapper 50 Cent is disputing claims by the Manhattan media blog Gawker that a recent deal with Pocket Books/MTV is “shady” and similar to another book series created by the rapper several years ago called, The Syndicate, according to a report in The Book Standard.

The new imprint, called G-Unit, has signed Nikki Turner, a successful street-fiction writer and one of Gerald’s clients, to pen the first book. “I think [G-Unit Books] is a great opportunity for writers to get their work seen at the highest levels,” he said.

Gawker charges that The Syndicate books were company “franchises,” written by anyone they chose. The blog said writers were signed for a low advance and weren’t in a position to negotiate more money if their titles sold well. Gawker also said that ghetto language was added to some of the books after the authors had approved them, and that Agent Gerald would send notes to writers that were meant to keep them from claiming ownership of their material.

In an interview with The Book Standard, Gerald said the allegations were “unfair,” and that he stands behind his work both as an agent and editor. The agent said he suspects Gawker’s source may have an ax to grind and added writers understood The Syndicate was a market-driven series. He told The Standard that The Syndicate would come up with the ideas and treatment and match writers to the project. The writers recognized their role and were compensated adequately, he said.

Gerald added that Syndicate titles were not “blackened” and were edited within the framework of the genre. “We worked within the parameters of what our audience was expecting and there was no minstrelsy at all,” he said. “This is the way pulp fiction has always been written.”