Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Scams, Lynchings, and it's Time to P-A-R-T-Y!

If you’ve been reading this blog, you know I’ve been having an on-going exchange with the Australian publisher of a certain so-called newsletter for writers. A few days ago—after having heard from me several times about the deplorable practice of attempting to scam writers—he had the gall to send me yet another invitation to participate in his grand scam/scheme.

I have unsubscribed rather than make more attempts to stop his money-making schemes while he continues to operate under the guise of “helping writers”. This, to me, is more akin to a raging moose in full rut, than a helping hand to the less experienced writer. Rob Parnell and your Easy Way to Write; you have lost my respect, my patronage, and will forever be included on my list of disreputable sources.

Since I’m already on the soapbox:

Well, here we are with yet another scam to take advantage of newbie writers and/or those who think self-publishing is a good way to break into print.

Wearing the good-guy hats: “Writer Beware, a publishing industry watchdog group sponsored by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, shines a light into the dark corners of the shadow-world of literary scams, schemes, and pitfalls,” according to the heading on their blog. They are taking on the latest multi-level marketing scheme to hit the self-publishing industry.

Wearing the bad-guy hats: WriteWise, BookWise, Richard Paul Evans, and Robert G. Allen. SHAME ON YOU!

Wait! Is this the same Robert G. Allen of real estate infamy? Maybe, maybe not. I don’t know. It’s a common name.

I’m thinking these folks should be lynched along with the thieves who stole my beloved old truck. Just my personal opinion and not that of TWC! However, I’m more than a little fired up over thievery and share the same ideals Toby Keith and Willie Nelson bestowed upon us with their song Whiskey for my Men and Beer for my Horses. With a 460 engine, my ’77 F-250 Super Duty truck had a lot of horses!

(Lynching seems to be on my mind since finishing Brant Randall’s ARC of BLOOD HARVEST. Great read! Due out in May.)

At the very least, vanity and subsidy publishers and hawkers who take advantage of writers are thieves and should be subjected to the same punishment afforded to bank and convenience store robbers and especially to those who steal beautiful old trucks from defenseless women; a huge fine AND prison time. L-o-n-g prison sentences. They are con artists and, often, stalkers. But--
maybe--I’m not so defenseless.

Check out this link and then bookmark it, subscribe to it, and make sure you listen to what they post:


Here is a “Thumbs Down” list of literary agencies of ill-repute:


Finally, here’s some good stuff! We’re geared up for the kickoff of Jordan Dane’s month-long “launch”, culminating in a P-A-R-T-Y on March 30th!

You’ll get all the details in TWC’s March Spotlight. Watch for it in your email inbox in the next couple of days.

What? You haven’t subscribed to the newsletter or announcements? How are you to know what’s going on in the writing world? How else will you get a front row seat to watch a debut author reach for the stars? A debut author with SIX sold books!

It’s much more fun to write about the good stuff.



At 10:12 AM, Blogger Rob Parnell said...

Hi Linda,

I have no idea what I did to upset you so much. I'm greatly offended by your comments - and I think many of my subscribers (not to mention my friends) would feel the same way. I am nothing if not totally sincere - can you say the same about your organisations motives?


At 12:23 PM, Blogger Linda J. Hutchinson said...

Rob, before posting this here I wrote several personal emails to you, after gathering comments from writers whose ethics I respect, who believed - as I did and do - that your "pay to be paid" deal was no deal.

It was aimed at the newbie/inexperienced writer and it was geared to take advantage of them. Someone has to stand up for them, to keep them out of hot water.

I told you in those personal emails that I would unsubscribe from your newsletter and let everyone I knew know that they should not participate in what I believed would cost them nothing but wasted money and wasted time - if you did not cease and desist.

You responded to those emails. Would you like for me to post them here, in their entirety, for the world to see?

Or would you like to agree that we disagree, and let it go? This is between you and me. This is not between you and The Writer's Chatroom.

As far as TWC's motives are concerned, it is a clean operation. Its ethics and motives are clearly aimed at teaching, encouraging and motivating - and protecting - the newbie/inexperienced writer.

It is so non-profit oriented that Audrey pays most of the bills to keep it open out of her own pocket. The rest of the expenses for hosting, the chatroom, the forum, the newsletter, and all else, comes from a few (affiliate) book sales and a few (affiliate) web hosting sales. Once in awhile, someone donates a few bucks to the cause.

TWC has been offering a host of FR*E services to writers at all stages of their careers, for at least 4 1/2 years, because I've attended most of the chats during that time, and moderated many of them.

When the newsletter, Spotlight, came out last year, it espoused the same ethics and motives already in place at TWC.

Do not attempt to disparage the image or reputation of TWC. If you have a beef with my post, let's you and I duke it out - or settle this quietly, amicably - and privately - which I attempted to do in those earlier emails.

If you are no longer promoting the "pay to be paid" "offer" in your newsletters and on your website, please let me know and I will amend my post.

If you have continued to promote this "offer", I will continue to say it is a scam aimed at the newbie writer.

I do not know where you stand on this, because I did exactly what I said I would do in the personal emails to you. If you did not bother to read them, then there is nothing else I can do for you.

I kept my word. Those words are in the post. They're the same words that were in the private emails to you.


At 12:53 PM, Blogger Linda J. Hutchinson said...

PS Rob, you might want to read the February 6th post here.


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