Authors Behaving Badly

Currently watching the Susan Meachen saga (briefly: Meachen is an indie romance author who had a family member claim she had committed suicide two years ago after being bullied over her romance novels. The indie book world promptly gathered together to raise money for her funeral and get her last book published, innocent people were accused of the bullying, and there was much stramash. A few days ago Meachen popped up on her FB reader group saying that she wasn’t dead, let the fun begin, and indie book world pretty much exploded when it came out she’d adopted a new pen name and had been moderating the group under it as well as writing under it).

Okay, so now you know. Her supporters say that she was just trying to protect herself, that she had been under great mental strain, yadda yadda. She said that she had been in the hospital when the family member (if this family member exists) had posted about her “death” and she had no control over that but knew they were trying to help her.

This, of course, does not address the help her family received in publishing her last book, the alleged possibility of fraud over the funeral money (this is still a confusing point), or the fact that she could have just said, “Whoops, I’m still alive, family member was just trying to protect me” instead of, you know, adopting a whole ‘nother online persona to moderate her FB reader group.

As I’d mentioned on TikTok, there’s making a mistake, there’s compounding a mistake, and then there’s this. And yes, I can understand mental illness driving someone to do something along these lines—some folks have mentioned that being bipolar can result in similar actions. But she shows no signs of regret or remorse whatsoever for hurting her readers. There was no apology, no, “Hey, I am so sorry about this, please forgive me for what I did, it won’t happen again.” Just a flippant, “Let the fun begin.”

That’s not MI—that’s being a manipulative asshole.

About Nicola Cameron

Nicola Cameron has had some interesting adventures in her life -- ask her sometime about dressing up as Tietania, Queen of the Bondage Fairies. When not writing, she wrangles cats, makes dolls of dubious and questionable identity, and thanks almighty Cthulhu that she doesn’t have to work for a major telecommunications company any more (because there’s BDSM, and then there’s just plain torture...).

Posted on January 5, 2023, in Business of Writing. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Wow. I just found out about this and I’m thinking back on a lot of early fandom drama, particularly in Harry Potter and Twilight. This is the sort of move I’d expect from younger, more impulsive and emotionally immature folks. When people do things for ‘attention’ it’s a cry for help, and I hope she gets therapy or medication to deal with the response she’s probably getting.

    • Yeah, someone made a TikTok where they said there are two types of writers: ones who are shocked and appalled at this sort of behavior, and ones who wrote fanfic. And while I hope she gets the help she needs, the lack of apology and the fact that she’s been publishing under other pseuds for the last two years and using one of those pseuds to moderate the “dead” writer’s reader group on FB smacks to me of more than just MI.

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