Ghostwriting and Freelance Writing Scam Alert

There are scammers targeting ghostwriters and probably editors. So, please be on guard.

I recently received a query from someone looking for a ghostwriter. The project was for a workshop to be given to young professionals.

The individual wanted a 2550 word “article” with specific sections for the workshop.

While it wasn’t for a children’s story, I’ve done a lot of business and marketing writing in the past so accepted the project.

For payments, I accept Venmo, Zelle, and PayPal, but she wanted to use a check. I agreed as long as it was a cashier’s check.

The individual said her sponsor would overnight full payment.

The next day I received a package with a check in it.

There wasn’t any information in the envelope at all, just the check. And, the woman (can’t be sure it was a woman as it was all via email and text messages) never told me her sponsor’s name.

The check was for double the amount agreed upon and was a personal check.

Red flags shot up.

Then I got a text from the woman. She said they sent funds for the second phase of the project. If the first phase went well, I now already had the money for the second phase.

We never discussed a second phase of the project.

Again, red flags shot up.

I emailed the woman and explained we agreed upon a cashier’s check. She texted back that I should just deposit the check as soon as possible and let her know when it’s done.

Again, red flags shot up.

I called my bank. They have an automated service that allows you to input a check’s routing number and account number and enter an amount to see if the funds were available.

There were insufficient funds for the amount of the check.

I explained to the woman that I wouldn’t be depositing the check. I didn’t bother letting her know that I knew there were insufficient funds. I just told her I understood the scam. I would deposit the check and they’d say phase two was squashed and I’d have to refund them the money.

That was the last I heard from her.

I also made a big mistake during this scam:

Because of the global situation, I didn’t want to go to my post office so gave my home address instead of my PO Box.

This is freelancing 101 – never give out your home address!

Children's ghostwriter

Whether you need ghostwriting or rewriting, let me take a look at your children’s story. Just send me an email at: Please put “Children’s Writing” in the Subject box. Or, give me a call at 347—834—6700

Let’s get your idea off the launch pad or your outline into a publishable shape today!

Or, if you’d rather give it a shot and do-it-yourself, check out my book, FICTION WRITING FOR CHILDREN.


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