Monday, October 24, 2005

A.C. Crispin - 9

A.C. Crispin

ENTER A HERO:

About this time, after the Deerings had been indicted, when law enforcement was paying attention to their scam, I spoke to agent Clay Mason, telling him about Martha Ivery, and asking him which office would handle the Catskills area of New York. Special Agent Mason told me it would be the Albany Field Office of the FBI.

So one day I plucked up my courage and called them.

I was SOOOOO LUCKY. When I asked to speak with an expert in white collar crime, they referred me to a man named Paul Silver. Paul listened to me patiently, took notes, and then told me that the FBI had an "unofficial" dollar amount of $100,000 in losses that had to be met before they could begin an active investigation. He didn't know anything about publishing scams, but he was quick-witted and patient. He listened, asked questions, and told me what Writer Beware would have to do in order to get the FBI interested in the case.

I was SOOOOO LUCKY. Since that time, I've spoken with many FBI agents on different cases, and some of them have been disappointingly unsympathetic, even indifferent, to the plight of scammed writers. For some strange reason, writers just don't seem to elicit public sympathy when they get taken, the way groups like the elderly do.

Instead there is often the unspoken, but real, judgment that "they had it coming, if they were that stupid."

I don't agree.

I've never been the kind of person to "blame the victim." I think that attitude, frankly, sucks.

But anyway, now Vic and I had our marching papers. $100,000 (or pretty close) in losses. If we could find that many victims and get their documentation, and get them to register official complaints, we might be able to get the Feds interested in pursuing the case.

We had our work cut out for us!

Okay, more later this week...but for now, here's today's writing tip: DON'T EVER USE COLORED PAPER FOR A MANUSCRIPT. OR WEIRD COLORED INK. OR UNUSUAL FONTS. FOR A COMPLETE, FREE MANUSCRIPT PREP GUIDE, VISIT THE SFWA SITE. IT'S
www.sfwa.org

Happy writing!

-Ann C. Crispin
www.accrispin.com

4 comments:

James Goodman said...

You mean a size 18 font printed brown on pink paper won't make the work stand out? Darn, back to the drawingboard. :)

Just kidding. I am really enjoying your posts (and the writing tips!)

A. C. Crispin said...

I have a question for you, Goody, or anyone else who knows. Is there any way to tell how many people are reading this blog? Or who have accessed my info on this site?

-Ann C. Crispin

James Goodman said...

Yes, there is. I will email you the link.

James Goodman said...

Or I could just post it here. Lol!

http://www.sitemeter.com/

Click on the "get your own site meter"

It walks you through everything you need to do (which there isn't very much to it) and even sets itself up on your blog for you.

It has some wonderful features such as world map (One of my favorites) that shows you everywhere in the world people are linking to your site.

If you have any problems, let me know. I would be glad to help.