Guide to Literary Agents is a blog I’ve got in my google reader (yeah, I use two readers now – never mind).
Her experience with what she calls a scam agent is worth reading and thinking about.
I don’t know if you need to pay a manuscript consultant as Jess apparently did and I know nothing about the service she used, but I do know that if you’ve got an article or other manuscript that isn’t selling you need to put it away for at least a couple of weeks before you rewrite it.
If you’re looking for an agent, take a look at this. You may find it helpful.
And when you page down there is at least one more story.
You might also find Advice From A Literary Agent – Videos for Writers helpful.