Writing Rip-offs

As in any profession or business, there are writing rip-offs. Here are a few:

Vanity press

You write it, we’ll print it. Then we’ll send you several big boxes with your 500 books inside. Make room in your garage. Shipping cost on you. We do no distribution.

Certain literary agencies

We charge $300 to look at your novel. I fell for this in my early years. I paid $135 to a Milwaukee literary agent. (I lived there at that time). He did nothing for me and I never heard from him again.

Reading fee

We charge a reading fee to read your novel. (Never pay for an agent or a publishing company to ‘read’ your work.

Poetry publication

“We’re including your poem along with 5,000 others. For a copy of the book, mail $65 to… Guys in prison came to me excited that their poem was going to be published. I didn’t tell them this was a scam.

Win contest – go to conference

Ms. Jones, you’ve won $50. You’ll get your prize by coming to our writing conference which costs $765 at the luxury Hotel…(conference registration is $425.)

Note: Most writer’s magazines do NOT do investigative reporting, do NOT check out their own advertisers.

Perhaps you know of other scams. Let us know.

2 responses to “Writing Rip-offs

  1. Hi Ed
    You are right, there are lots of scams out there. BUT a reputable editor who charges a fair fee is not a scam and in fact is a necessity in my opinion.

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