This business entity acts as a carnival shell game. They operate and advertise themselves as being the “self-publishing” side of the large traditional publishing house Simon and Schuster. They are not. Operating and branding as the business shell “Archway Publishing”, they then outsource their services to “Author Solutions”, whis is a known “vanity press” famous for scamming elderly housewives who write poetry out of their retirement savings. | Author Solutions has been sued in class actions suits and settled hundreds of others out-of-court. They have been under investigation numerous times by various states’ attorney generals for fraudulent activities. Author Solutions, to evade their reputation and criminal history, uses a number of aliases and localized business imprints such as “The Orange Cover”. The Orange Cover is the business that victimized me. | All of these business layers have recently embarked on a new scam, which goes like this: Thinking you are dealing with a legitimate publisher (Simon and Schuster), you contact them. You are asked to submit your manuscript or proposal (it turns out, solely for them tor present an impression of legitimacy to support the scam). They discard your submission upon receipt without reading it (they will later charge you $400.00 to actually read it, as you’ll see momentarily). | You’ll immediately get an e-mail you’ve been accepted into their program but cannot proceed without a signed agreement – this is the e-mail I got: | “Frederic, | “Congratulations and welcome to Archway Publishing! We are very excited to offer you the full support and guidance of our industry-leading professionals to bring your book to its maximum potential. | “Within one to three business days, you will receive an email with a link to a document outlining the terms and conditions of the Archway Publishing agreement. Instructions for signing and returning the document will be included within the email. | “Please monitor your e-mail account for this important message. We cannot begin work, or assign your production team on the project until this agreement is signed by you and returned to us. Once I receive the signed agreement it will take me about a week to organize your team. From there, we will reach out to discuss submission instructions. | “We look forward to working with you! | “Best, | “Aimee Reff | PUBLISHING CONSULTANT | Archway Publishing FROM SIMON & SCHUSTER : | 1663 Liberty Drive Bloomington, IN 47403 | P: 888.242.5904 ext: 5616 F: 812.349.0784 [email& 160;protected] | archwaypublishing.com | “This email is an advertisement. | “To be removed from my email list, please click here or, alternatively, send an email to [email& 160;protected] with the subject UNSUBSCRIBE.” | Within 24 hours, you will received a phone call from a professional telemarketer hustling you for $2,100.00 for “expenses” related to the “agreement”. She will hustle you for an immediate payment by credit card, which she takes from you by phone. | If you cannot pay all of it, she’ll set up all kinds of crerative ways for you to make payments, but always with the stipulation that you must make SOME kind of a payment immediately today for the “agreement” to go forward, and that first payment must always be in excess of $400.00. Once you’ve made the payment, then you are told that an agent will now read your submission and “evaulate it”, which is required to go forward, but the fee for doing that is a non-refundable $400.00. | That is, a “reading fee” will be taken out of the monies you were just bilked, and you can never get that money back. If after reading the material, it is deemed unacceptable by Simon and Schuster )or Archway, or Author Solutions, or The Orange Cover, or whoever this is you are now dealing with), your “agreeement” will be unilaterally cancelled by them, and your deposit will be refunded to you less the $400.00 “reading fee”. | If they elect to go ahead, however, you are on the hook for the full $2,100.000, irrespective whehter your book is ever published. After I was hustled for a $700.00 down payment and credit card, I had my first chance to review the agreement and realized I’d been scammed. I called the BBB here in San Diego and spoke to the San Diego County District Attorney’s office. | Following their advice, I submitted to them copies of the agreement and immediately the following morning sent Archway an e-mail requesting termniantion of the agreement and a full refund. They responded back that I was entitled to a refuned. They then had another telemarker call me, which went to voicemail and was recorded. I then sent a followup demand for full refund, to whcih they have not responded. | This is the full e-mail chain (in reverse order, latest first) of my correspondence with them subsequent to that first e-mail exchange and telemarketer hustle: | ————————————————– | Aimee, | I wanted to keep a verbose and accurate written record of all of our transactions, should it have evidentiary value at some point. In my conversations with the BBB and especially the District Attorney, they deemed the documents you sent me as being fraudulent. That would, in particular, apply to that portion where you get the victims to sign a blind-faith agreement knowing nothing of their writing skills or book content, and then deduct a $400.00 “reading fee” from their already-paid deposit if their book isn’t you to your standards. You seemed to have them shaking their heads at your audacity. | In any case, I agreed to keep meticulous records (I will post these to an Internet blog and my LinkedIn account so that others can learn from my experience with you). After having terminated my relationship and demanding a full refund pursuant to my conversations with you, I received a phone message on my cellphone from yet another business name (“The Orange Cover”). The transcript as recorded by Google Voice: | “Hello, this is a message for Frederick sir. My name is Pam. Axelson. I’m calling from Archway publishing. I had received a message regarding a request to refund your publishing package. And so I’m reaching out to work with you to do that. My direct number is 882-425-5904 extension 5487. If you could give me a call, I’ll be happy to help you out. Thank you so much and have a wonderful day.” | The number “882-425-5904” does not exist. However, Google trapped the Caller ID number as (812) 671-9754. I called that number, using extension 5487, and voicemails identified the message box owner as Pam Axelson. I left a voice-mail, to which no one has yet responded 24 hours later. | But in truth, no phone conversation is necessary. I have terminated our relationship under California with 24 hours of my 72-hour right of rescission, and you owe me a full refund in the amount of $716.34. There is no gray area here, and nothing to discuss. The circumstances are clear, the record is clear, and the law is clear. | I do not intend to be conned by you again. Return my full refund immediately to: Frederic Scott Deaver
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