Scammers: Don’t mess with kids! gets dozens of letters and e-mails each week, but one that really tugged at us was the case of the 16 Texas middle schoolers and their teacher who lost $2,000 to a fictitious publishing company in Indiana. The students wrote a book called Locker Letters. Their original book signing at a Barnes & Noble store in the spring was held — but it may have been the first book signing in history where the books weren’t even printed. When a police detective visited the publishing company owner at the listed company offices, he found a disheveled man in a bathrobe coming to the door of a rickety home in a trailer park. To catch up, you can read here the previous Dave Lieber column, which first appeared in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

The team that produces — the book and our upcoming CD audio book — immediately pitched in to help. Locker Letters arrived at a Borders book store in Colleyville,Texas on Sept. 11, 2010. The students from North Oaks Middle School in Haltom City, Texas in the Birdville school district hosted a wonderful book signing. And you can support these student authors and buy Locker Letters here.

Watch the video Scammers: Don’t Be Messing With Kids here.  Congratulations to the kids! You’re authors now! And Carolyn Hedgecock, the teacher who got fooled, has a new autographed copy of Dave Lieber’s Watchdog Nation: Bite Back When Businesses and Scammers Do You Wrong. The inscription? “You need to read this! Stay safe, Dave Lieber.”

She need not feel that bad. Self-publishing scams are common these days.  You can learn how to protect yourself from all kinds of evil with the book that promises to save you money, time and aggravation. Dave Lieber’s Watchdog Nation: Bite Back When Businesses and Scammers Do You Wrong won two national book awards for social change. Learn more here. Thanks to Jerry D. Simmons of for his assistance. Thanks to our book designer, Janet Long, for her book design. Thanks to our copy editor, Anita Robeson, for her work on the project. Thanks to our printing house, Friesens and rep Coral Gates, for their great work.  And a special shoutout to Tamara Roberts whose new company,

Royal Shield Publishing, issued the book as its first imprint. Roberts studied with founder Dave Lieber at a writing workshop. She learned how to create your own book publishing company. Do it yourself! That’s the best way to avoid getting hurt by others. And these days, it’s easy for committed authors to pursue their dreams. After many requests, Dave Lieber created a how-to-self publishing manual that many authors have used to create their own self-publishing companies and live their writer’s dream. Learn more about Dave’s Guide to Self-Publishing here. Locker Letters is the latest book to come out of this Dave Lieber system. Way to go, kids.

# # # Dave Lieber, The Watchdog columnist for The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, is the founder of Watchdog Nation. The new 2010 edition of his book, Dave Lieber’s Watchdog Nation: Bite Back When Businesses and Scammers Do You Wrong, is out. Revised and expanded, the book won two national book awards in 2009 for social change. Twitter @DaveLieber

Dave Lieber's self-publishing guide shows authors how to do it yourselves, save money, make money and avoid getting scammed.

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