Sunday, October 31, 2010

Scam Publishers- The Black Eye of Indie Presses

David Boyer, is that You?


Tyree Campbell (Publisher of Sam's Dot Publishing) has written a highly informative and thoughtful article on the plagiarist David Boyer (a.ka. David Byron, Iron Dave, and a long list of other aliases).  It's worth reading and lends a lot of credence to what we're discussing in this post.  Here's the link to Tyree's article:


Most writers, in their early days, are so desperate to be published that they never question who their publisher is.  The idea that the person at the other end of their submission might be unscrupulous never seems to occur to them.  Just the opportunity of being published in a print magazine is enough to make young writers shove their common sense in a drawer.

But writing is a business- shouldn't you know who you're doing business with?  I've been fortunate enough to know my publishers personally.  William Jones and Tyree Campbell are two of the finest men you would ever want to meet.  But believe me, after learning what I have about the dark underside of Indie Publishing, before I go to another publisher with anything, I'll research them thoroughly before I submit my work.

For example, imagine all of the writers thrilled to be accepted by David Boyer (David Byron, etc.), not knowing that he is a plagiarst on a shocking scale.  He makes money by stealing other writer and artist's work and selling them for profit.  To promote his shaky self-image, he even gives work that he doesn't own away for free.  Who would think that the little town of Vincennes, Indiana harbors such a con man?  Without checking David Boyer (David Byron et al) out thoroughly, how would they know who they were really dealing with?

Did you know that our favorite plagiarist is still soliciting stories and interviews?  All this while the deeper we dig, the more we find he's stolen and used.

Perhaps you think he is the only publisher out there like this?  Think again. 

Although the genre organizations- The Horror Writers Association, the SFWA and such- were quick to respond to the Boyer alert, is there no Indie Press Association to report this guy to?  What exactly are the standards of the Indie Press industry?  An email address and the phone number for a Print-On-Demand company?  Is there no industry association to vet these small presses?  If there is, can someone please let me know who they are, because I want to work with them.

How about this- how many of you have not been paid royalties by scam publishers?  Did you know that you have legal recourse to report this to the Attorney General where their businesses are located?  Earlier I wrote about the Caswell case in Indiana, which tipped me off to this avenue of redress.  How about you?  When you don't get paid promised royalties, do you let it drop so that other publishers don't think you're difficult, or do you stand up for yourself.

We're trying to find every instance of where David Boyer/ David Byron cheated writers out of their royalties so we can send this information to the Attorney General for the State of Indiana.  They come down hard on scam publishers.

Remember, David Boyer/ David Byron had people sending manuscripts to him all the time.  How many of them did he plagiarize?

Think about it.  Writing is a business- what can we do to protect ourselves and each other from crooks like David Boyer/ David Byron?

Tin Foil Dave used multiple identities and freewebs to hide his activities under a myriad of personna.  Next post we'll look at how easy it is to sort through that kind of smokescreen.

MySpace Tracker


JEFritz said...

Very informative. It's so easy to think you're invulnerable, that you'll spot any scam from a mile away. Unfortunately, scammers are aware of that.

Rick said...

They are JEFritz. And sneaky, too. Do you know how many times David Boyer/ Byron has visited this blog disguised as an old woman wearing a babushka?

Charles Gramlich said...

There's never any shortage of assholes willing to prey on the dreams of people. That's the worst kid of thievery to me.

Rick said...

That's the thing, Charles. These creeps really do prey on dreams. Someone asked me whether or not I felt bad exposing Boyer/Byron's plagiaries in anthologies that might have stories that were legitamitely put there. The answer is whether or not they are so desperate that they want to be published by a crook like Boyer.

When we finally get hold of his financials, we'll be able to see how many writers he's actually paid.

Travis Cody said...

Rick, thanks so much for providing this information. I'm learning a lot about how to protect my work and be more aware of the dangers.

Rick said...

Who would ever have thought we'd have to be so careful? But I'm with you- the more information we share about protecting ourselves, the better off we are.

Lana Gramlich said...

I sympathize totally, as I'm about to file a small claims case against a local "businessman" who sold 2 of my paintings & took off with the money. Son of a b!tch...

Rick said...

He can't run far enough to escape the blogging community! Is he still in business?