How the scam works:
Scammers target unsuspecting authors with fake representation offers, followed by phony high-advance contract offers from a major publishing house– all within a few hours.
The crooks are very convincing, as they pre-research all the names used in the correspondence. This way, when authors research the publishers themselves, they will find legitimate websites and deals. The details scammers give are so well-prepared that the writers let their guards down, thinking all their hard work and talent is finally appreciated.
Playing both “the agent” and the “publishing house”, the scammers ask the authors to pay the representation fee, along with any other “small” charges, to get the ball rolling.
How to avoid:
As talented as you might think you are, you won’t get a book deal within a few hours of receiving a representation offer, since the editors involved have never seen your book before.
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