The outpouring of support the fellow #RRRsurvivors and I have received is overwhelming.
About two weeks ago I got in contact with NBC12. Diane Walker of 12 On Your Side, quickly contacted me back and was interested in doing a story about this author scam. She spent a considerable amount of time gathering information, interviewing authors and attempting to reach out to the organizer, Lauren Calhoun.
I’m linking the story here, which perfectly summarizes everything. The fact that Lauren has not returned anyone’s efforts at contact (including the news and the police) AND has failed to refund anyone’s money should speak for itself. There is a lot she didn’t realize about the authors she was working with (note: I can’t bring myself to consider her a fellow author).
This is a tough industry. Most of us aren’t making money off of our writing. At the end of the day we’re trying to get our businesses (being an author is a business) off the ground and to do that we rely on the integrity of our names. That’s our brand. Our names are precious to us. Our reputations are years in the making.
I genuinely don’t believe she realized how deeply we value our industry, our names, and the work we’re producing. As authors we’re all in this together and we all need to have each other’s backs. Obviously she didn’t value her name, or her brand or her business or her industry, the way the rest of us do. Since I posted this video clip on Facebook yesterday it has been viewed 16,000 times. Other event organizers have reached out to offer us discounted tables at their events. Other authors and promotion companies have sent swag to give out at our new event. In the end, the thirty three of us still remaining are bigger, better and stronger. We’ve taken a challenge and flipped it on it’s head.
So thank you to everyone for their love and support. Thank you for caring, thank you for reading authors who work their tails off, thanks for organizing great events, thanks for buying books. Oddly enough, I will walk away from this experience feeling more a part of the author community, more supported and more in awe of our industry, because I was scammed. Betcha Lauren didn’t plan on that!