Updates and Memories of Ongoing Abuse and Clubby Narcissism at Absolute Write

Published 5/19 on the Complaints Board (along with many other complaints about Absolute Write):


The advice is juvenile and hardly critical or informed...incompetent in many ways. 

I was a member of AW for a while, and I find myself going back every few months to check up on some of the horrible discussions. The advice is juvenile and hardly critical or informed, incompetent in many ways... Any opinion given as advice that challenges this status quo in any way is immediately dismissed, as though there were one way in which fiction must be undertaken, and one way only.

I have also gotten into EXTREMELY passive aggressive debates with other users and mods on several occasions, and, although that is the lay of the land when it comes to internet forums, there tends to be causes to incite such exchanges. On AW, no such causes are needed. It is also important to note that the vast majority of advice being given is coming from fellow amateur/unpublished writers, many who are far too inexperienced in both life and actual writing to possibly have the perspective to form good critical advice, and many of whom clearly don't read books--how are they expected to write?!?

I would put good money on 75% of the users not even knowing who Borges is, and these are people who are supposed to be giving legitimate advice? Their credibility isn't helped by the fact that several of the published authors on the site are self-published (not inherently bad), and most of the published works (both self and not) are horrible supernatural romance/horror romance/fantasy romance (notice a trend?), the kind with well built white vampire dudes on the cover.

Again, nothing inherently bad about this fact, except that, to me, the trendy YA/teenage audience these cookie-cutter works cater to is further evidence that they actively perpetuate and defend a kind of status quo, in which anything that challenges the fiction they write is artsy/pointless/breaking nonexistent rules/evil.
Thankfully, I can say in the few years I was with them back in the day, I gained a few pointers on how NOT to teach someone, and, now that I'm an English tutor at my college, I hope to do what AW can only dream of doing--actually helping someone improve their work with thoughtful criticism.
Further proof that many of the users are incapable of reading critically, including mods: I tend to word my posts very carefully, using very specific vocabulary and always prefacing and qualifying what I am saying with caveats and so forth, so as to allow for the possibility of my opinion on said writing subject not meshing well with others, so anyone who puts a smallest amount of effort into reading it will be able to understand I am offering a single perspective on an otherwise all-encompassing issue. Yet I would get post after post, some from mods themselves, dismissing and attacking points I made, almost always ones I prefaced with something like "to NEEDLESSLY do this is bad", as if I did not go out of my way to state clearly that I did not mean what I said as an "absolute" truth. If the people meant to be giving advice cannot even read an internet post carefully enough to grasp what was actually said, I doubt their ability to truly help anyone.

Thankfully, I can say in the few years I was with them back in the day, I gained a few pointers on how NOT to teach someone, and, now that I'm an English tutor at my college, I hope to do what AW can only dream of doing--actually helping someone improve their work with thoughtful criticism.


@Fiendish writer, no one is lying about Absolute Write. That place is a almost a sewer of negativity. The mods are bullies. They bash self-publishing. They are so pathetic. I don’t know why writers even bother going over there- to have themselves kept in check by a bunch of bums. That’s just my personal opinion, of course. I’ve never been in trouble there or been banned, but I saw how volatile that place was and got away quick. Nobody is lying. Everything they say about that place is true.

      - "The Last of Us" (comment thread)

I'm one to lurk before joining in, and after watching the mods tear apart people for NO reason, then egging on others to bash those people, then carrying on long after they chased the person from the site...yeah I think I will pass on joining in. I've never seen anything so vile. There is a definite "clique" there. The site is great for them, but it looks like it's near impossible to become part of their "in club". Whether I could get in with them or not, I don't think I'd want to because I won't stand behind such poor behavior. This has to be the worst writing community I've ever encountered.

     - The Complaints Board

It's pretty much just what you'd expect. A lot of bad-to-mediocre writers giving bad-to-mediocre advice to bad-to-mediocre wannabe writers... The mods are powertripping jerks, just as many of the other posters have said. I met a handful of nice people, but no reason to stick around. I never posted any work to be critiqued because honestly, so much of what was posted in the critique section was so bad and the advice that was given equally amateur... I just didn't feel like I'd gain anything from it that I didn't already know. And most of the advice from different critters was conflicting, anyway. 

     - Rachel W. - The Missing Sitejabber Reviews

Ironically these “websites / authors” are doing what they claim others are doing, taking advantage of people who are looking in good faith for facts and information, truthful information about the publishing industry. Their responses are reduced to internet babble. A mix of half truths, alleged facts and very personal un-professional remarks and behavior. They tend to be abusive, Holier then thou, and totally off the mark. ALL they have to do is PROVE what they post. Just saying they have “hundreds” of complaint isn’t going to cut it. People are fed up with that attitude. Courts are leaning heavily toward companies and individuals who are entitled to face their accusers and their alleged facts.

One poster stated that they’re “reaping what they sow” how true. All of sudden people are asking them questions about who they really are, besides mutual friends.

So why don’t they just tell the truth?

     - Publishing Facts

I’ve only been a member briefly, and found this blog by searching how to leave the AWWC. It’s horrible. I thought it was an open, honest forum to exchange ideas and learn. I found myself in the middle of backbiting, condescending, bitter people (including two Mods) who were not helpful at all and hide behind screen names.

How am I supposed to take career advice seriously from someone called SuperModerator, when I can’t tell if they’ve ever published anything? I asked a specific question, and when I questioned politely but firmly the uninformed and negative advice an anonymous writer gave, she harangued and condescended like a fishwife.

On another thread, she jumped into a productive discussion and tongue lashed not only me, but every contributor! Lord, it must’ve taken her half an hour just to quote every single one of us LOL It was a ludicrous critique: she said we “had to” provide evidence for everything we said. This, immediately after telling me one of her pets doesn’t have to provide any, and I am rude for asking. 

     - The Cult - Absolute Write Water Cooler (comments)

I will give give "Absolute Write" credit for one thing though, they're very intelligent people. You see, they solved the mystery of my age. Using their version of commonsense and deductive reasoning, they were able to figure out that I am a withering and wilted old man. In a thread on their forum, they were talking about me. As everyone who has been following me knows, my age has not only been a bully obsession, but has baffled them for centuries. It's really all they can talk about... I will go on record and say that I am not one hundred percent positive that "Absolute Write" is a scam, I have no concrete proof of it, but when the owner of the site lies about her real name, and address, and has been sued on multiple occasions, then all of the signs point to ---> Buyer Beware!

     - Carroll Bryant

The main focus of Absolute Write is the "Water Cooler", a huge forum which addresses authorship of any kind. It has begun to suffer from a typical ailment that creeps in most long-standing Internet forums: the dreaded Clique Mentality. This occurs when a relatively small set of users contributes the vast majority of posts, combined with a set of unwritten rules--which are often rather unclear to anybody else than the clique itself. Hapless outsiders who violate these clique conventions will often find a mob of old-standing users pounce upon them like a group of ravenous wolves. I'm not joking--it's not a pretty sight when it happens. I have seen posters on Absolute Write being bullied merely for disagreeing with a clique member on a fairly minor matter. 

 The mob will pull any trick to discredit an outsider: ridiculing, twisting words of out context, and fairly often rather nasty personal attacks. People with few to no publishing credentials will get told that their opinions are unimportant and that their writing "likely sucks."  The irony is that most clique members are themselves writers of mediocre fare dwindling in the lower parts of the midlist, if that ...

     - Anon : The Missing Alexa Reviews

As far as I'm concerned, if a site is run this way it has no value so I will ignore it and encourage everyone to ignore it. It is run by a bunch of lower mid-list (and that may be being generous) old biddies who have nothing better to do than to dictate their rules to others. Free speech does not exist on Absolute Write and where free speech does not exist, I will not go. They talk a good game about "respect your fellow writer" but take umbrage at things in an oversensitive way and pull that respect from you without a second thought.

    - Mark Breuer : No Irish, No DGs

If you're a member of Absolute Write, I guarantee you've seen the moderators sweep into a discussion where the topic is one of their pet peeves, use the unfortunate poster as a punching bag, invite long-time members to join them, and then lock the thread and sometimes boot the member. It's never a straightforward warning about the rules, or a request for clarification. The moderators are not there to facilitate discussion, they're there to drive the discussion. If it ventures out of the bounds they like, even if the discussion is polite, it gets locked if for no other reason than "attitude."

It took me about five minutes to gather some examples. I went to a single topic and looked through the first few pages for locked threads. To be fair, two of the threads I saw were locked for legitimate (at least, what most forum admins would consider legitimate) reasons: resurrecting ancient threads. The rest were examples of moderators treating members like garbage.

     - Absolute Wrong : Silencing the Lambs

So whatever the merits of the campaign against Absolute Write, or the motivations of those behind this campaign, I have to (reluctantly) say that those in charge of Absolute Write Water Cooler richly deserve it. In the short time that I had an identity on that board, I would cringe every time that I logged on, in anticipation of the latest gratuitous, public insult that the board moderators had lodged against me, along with the warning "don't you dare talk back, or it will turn out badly for you" (their exact words).

     - B.Q. : Haters Gonna Hate (Comments on Victoria Strauss Troll Battle)

This morning, we found out through a few book club members that a forum known as the Absolute Write Cooler had identified us as a fake. Apparently, this is because we don't have an "existence that isn't associated with this book blog. No one reports going to lunch with her, she didn't show her pet at a local cat show, she hasn't participated in a Walk For Life, she isn't listed in a graduating class."

Correct me if I am wrong, but my book blog should be about books and what I want to include. If you do not see what you want to see, that doesn't make me fake.

Then came the next disturbing element of this unfolding drama. So we've been certified as fake. The forum moderator HapiSofi bashed the book club in more than one thread. She was applauded for her 'detective' work. Absolute joy, that people find so many useful ways to spend their time. But one thing, was missing. Where is HapiSofi's contact information? From as far back as 2012, three characters appear in every thread together. HapiSofi, James McDonald and AliceShortCake. Then there are names like Old Hack, VeinGlory and Torgo. Again, no contact information, no social media links for most of these profiles.

     - Quality Reads UK


Absolute Write... So they made a set of forums for self pub. I rolled across them a couple of months ago, and was pretty horrified by what I saw: a large number of folks claiming to be industry experts deliberately spreading misinformation about what self publishing was, how best to go about it, and whether one could actually do it successfully (outside a few “outliers”). So I stepped in and started pointing out the flaws in the logic.

     - Kevin O. Mclaughlin

What frightens me as a rational person is that there are those who cannot understand why WAR and other sites are taking the time and effort to resist the kingdom of Absolute Write. What are they refusing to see? It is obvious that this is a combination protest and consciousness raising effort on the part of groups and people critical of the ongoing abuse, smears and cyberbullying. It is also a movement to curtail their behavior by any legal means necessary, as WAR says, and I agree with this. 

     - Lesley Cameron - The Consequence and Sad Truth of Hate (comments)

Beware. Absolute Write, in the hands of Lisa Spangenberg and her associates, is in effect a judge-jury-prosecutor platform, and one utilized on an almost daily basis to publicly humiliate, bash, defame and even scold people they have never met and do not know, as well as businesses they have never interacted with in any form whatsoever. All it takes is for one question to be asked, or one axe grinder to make an appearance, and the predators smell blood. A swarm of anonymous fairies and fops with ridiculous icons appear and begin fomenting themselves into leaps of logic, unfounded assumptions, and distortions of reality. All this would be amusing if it were not for the fact that their extensive dialogues and diatribes become public record and are ranked high in Google.

And will the average reader always understand what kind of sociopaths he or she is witnessing. Not necessarily. They appear to speak from authority quite often, give the appearance of sincerity, and there is a background history of real scams revealed by Absolute Write. Users there like Victoria Strauss, who give the appearance of legitimacy, will rush in to show support. But as we all know, the best way to maintain the momentum at Absolute Write is to mix a few grains of truth into one continuous and hydra-headed avalanche of lie. In reality, the core site is a lie on more than one level. The owner and her sock puppets and assorted gang not only shred people all day for amusement and publicity (as someone pointed out, the mediocre writers get publicity for their poorly written books each time they post) and monetary gain (huge revenue from advertisements), the site itself purports to offer good advice to writers when in fact it does no such thing. Advice is amateurish and quite often just plain wrong.

Regardless, the bullies at Absolute Write, herded there by Lisa Spangenberg (as we all now know) and goaded on by her at all times with great vigor, basically function as a Salem witch trial. Accusations are often baseless, but delivered and discussed with excessive zeal. Victims are displayed for purposes of torture, and anyone who disagrees is accused of being a witch also.

One has to ask: what gives such cowardly arm-chair nerds the right to act as prosecutors, judge and jury? Nothing gives them the right. These are a bunch of losers looking for payback. I've seen it before. I've fired abnormals like this at my job because they were caught retaliating against other workers using phony online identities.

I know the type, and I sincerely hope someone is able to bring legal action against Lisa Spangenberg and her hateful crew.

     - PublisherW - The Missing Sitejabber Reviews


"ABSOLUTE power corrupts absolutely." is the phrase that really sums it up which is funny and ironic. The head admin Spangenberg that has the sock puppet Stone is on a huge power trip over having that big board that looks great, that people want to join, but it's so insidious because it looks harmless and super fun but any of the mods that are nuts like that OldHack and Spangenberg will just randomly attack people and people can't even defend themselves their either banned or have some humiliating subnic, 

And I'm not talking about the small publishers and scam publishers that they bash, I'm talking about just writers trying to talk about any issue if a mod agrees with ANYTHING on ANY topic then they can insult, belittle and degrade that member to their hearts content and the member will be banned if they say one word in their defense or even if they say anything perceived as "snarky" back and they just play these nasty little mind games that they think are so clever, but anyone can see through them, it's just that people can't do anything much about them because it is a private business, but yes, the crazy power trip is ruining a magnificent concept and something that could be so good.

She really doesn't have to act so crazy and nasty to keep control of her board and it's really hypocritical to let certain mods spew misinformation and throw around insults like that Old Hack.

     - Shay Richards : The Looking Glass of Caroll Bryant (comments)

Now, if there is any environment more toxic than GR, it’s the Absolute Write Water Cooler. It’s a snake pit. And not just any snake pit. We’re talking Indiana Jones, Raiders of the Lost Ark kind of snake pit. Why is it so bad? Its not just because of its members. Its moderators play a big part in it, too. Keep reading and we’ll show you what we mean.

Now before we continue, we want to show you some Alexa reviews we found  here. All of the five star reviews are legacy reviews, because once upon a time, when AW was fresh and new, it was a good place to be, but slowly over time, it became corrupt.

     - STGRB : The Banning of Robin Sullivan

The First Years After Jenna Sold Absolute Write to Melodi "Mac" Sherman and Partner Spangenberg


In a sadly prophetic post about Jenna Glatzer's founding, building, and eventual sale of Absolute Write, author Ted Gross states:
We miss you, Jenna!
If the new owner(s) and moderators choose to use it for their own personal ends, something that Jenna never did, AW will fall by the wayside. If they choose to allow a differing of opinions then AW may flourish. They will need balance and wisdom. They will require certain innate qualities which no one can know they have until it is put to the test. They will have to learn the elements of respect and fear and know how to understand each. That only the future will tell, and thus no amount of discussion will do any good...
A poignant observation on how Absolute Write became the central forum of the writing industry. For a bit of background, Ted Gross was an active, supportive member for years. His glowing recommendation from 2005 can still be seen.


A bare few months pass with the "new guard" in charge. The same Ted Gross, who spoke so highly of Absolute Write community, becomes one of the first targets of mob mentality. When a member of Absolute Write used a swastika in his signature line and the moderators did nothing about it, Ted, who is of Jewish descent, took offense. The questions he asks may sound familiar to some readers:
[W]here the hell are the police mods who seem to be all over when heaven forbid, someone says something not to their liking? Where the hell are the "open-minded" people who run this board? Could it be that if you say something not kind about Absolute Write you will get banned but showing a swastika is considered "freedom of speech"?
Lisa (yes, that Lisa, a la Spangenberg) feels it her duty to lecture Ted on what he is and isn't allowed to be offended about, and how the swastika had meaning for centuries before the Nazi's began using it. I would love to see someone post "gay people suck," and then lecture Mac and Lisa on how the word "gay" had meaning for centuries before homosexuals starting using it, and then tell them they aren't allowed to be offended because it means "happy people suck." I'm too big of a coward, but someone should do this. I'd watch. With popcorn.

So anyway, the AW moderators continue to bash Ted, his feelings, and his beliefs for months and defend the use of a symbol one of their members found offensive. One commenter even blames Jews for allowing a few decades of hate to obliterate the wonderful meaning of the swastika.

Yeah, we're not kidding. It's there in the last link.


Money troubles abound at Absolute Write, starting this year and spilling into next. Part of the financial woes could stem from Barbara Bauer's regular tantrums (she got the web host shut down in 2006, sued in 2007, and filed amendments in 2008).

Class instructors turn to Writers Weekly as a neutral third to arbitrate disputes over not receiving payments for services rendered. Not all writers know about the possibility of arbitration, though (ironically, the reason communities like Absolute Write exist), and at least one writer is forced to take a loss.

Look at Them
In a blow for the writing community at large, having Barbara Bauer (a proven fraud) attack Absolute Write shored up the AW community and made it appear more legitimate. We suspect that if no lawsuits were filed, Absolute Write would have faded into obscurity. However, their heroic battle against the evil Bauer agency resuscitated and introduced the forums to a new generation of writers.

Some of those financial woes might also link to MacAllister's (aka Melodi Sherman--her real name) new business ventures. It's hard not to speculate where some of the money might have gone when at the same time Absolute Write was financially struggling, MacAllister "Melodi Sherman" Stone was aggressive expanding her own personally branded site, macallisterstone.com, and online magazine, Coyote Wild.

Written in Stone - stone engraving business http://www.macallisterstone.com/wis/index.html

(Not) Written in Stone (now defunct and deleted) - forum touted as "sister site" and actively pedaled to new members: http://absolutewrite.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-111521.html

Per Internet Wayback - Registration turned off between 10/17/2008 and 11/20/2008, members dropped from 217 to 115; before 2008, was a simple Blogger blog, between 6/2/2014 and 7/14/2014 went live with new content - Content now resides at /wis subfolder

Absolute Write Amazon Store http://web.archive.org/web/20081207132549/http://www.absolutewrite.com/shop.htm + Absolute Write newsletter called Absolute Markets


Beginning in January, the servers behind Absolute Write experienced intermittent outages throughout the year. The core group, who couldn't survive an hour without bashing someone, migrated among a Starchat channel, a temporary forum hosted by Roger Carlson, and MacAllister Stone's own website (presumably because allowing someone else to own the site host for the forum was unbearable for her).

The forum at Absolute Write flourished without the participation of the owner and her band of cronies. Lisa and Mel popped in only rarely to ban people or attempt to discourage beginners; Old Hack worked on her self-publishing review site, redesigned her personal "God's answer to writers" website, and started a brief (pun intended) flash fiction blog; and Hapi "Teresa Nielsen Hayden" Sofi lent her particular brand of vitriol to the forum.

The rest is still unfolding history, ugly history. Thank you, Macallister Melodi Sherman-Stone.

Karmic Retribution Unleashed - Panic Grips Absolute Write and the Exodus Continues

NOTE: Urgent. If you're trying to sign-on to Absolute Write, know that their deep-scan software is probing as much information on your computer drives as possible and storing it. You're not being told this. They're utilizing the information in an attempt to ID the hackers who have been electronically sacking and besieging the AW site since December, but at what cost? Also, know that hackers are circling the site like buzzards and picking off the weakest. Be warned!

NOTE: We are reposting the notes on the left about Jenna because of the mails and comments we continue to receive from yesteryear fans who still yearn for the days when she ran Absolute Write instead of the current regime of hostile "woke" trolls (in truth, putting it mildly).

Is the worst is over for Absolute Write.Com? No. The slide continues unabated. The threat of hackers running rampant and taking names during the DDOS attack on their server has taken its toll. AW traffic is once again cut in half with no bottom in sight. The place is a smoking shell of its former self. Course, it had already taken a beating before that. As we've noted elsewhere on this blog, you can't continue grossly insulting people, threatening them, humiliating them, and trying to ruin their reputations whenever they don't agree with your narcissistic opinion, and expect life to be easy.

Rumor is the perpetrators of the DDOS attack have warned Lisa Spangenberg and Macallister Stone (Melodi Sherman) to expect more attacks if they don't mend their ways, but we have no confirmation of this. One of the AW ex-members who fled the website and who was a member for seven years, told us:

"It's just too risky to hang around there anymore. In exchange for putting up with the snotty and cruel behavior of the AW club, I thought I was getting some good writing advice, but now it's just not worth the punishment, and besides the advice turned out to be terrible anyway."

We recommend avoiding the lingering radiation. Approach AW at your own risk!

Absolute Write UP ... Sort of

After imploding and staying down for nearly two months due to a hostile DDOS attack by a disgruntled former member (we presume correctly?), Absolute Write is now back up--in a manner of speaking. If anyone tries to go to the site, however, freaky scanning of your pc takes place with odd oscillating web pages as the process continues. No one knows what kind of information that the Absolute Write server is sucking out of your computer or how deep they're digging, but it's all in the name of security.

Regardless, one wonders why all that is necessary. Other commercial sites endure DDOS attacks and they're not combing through files on everyone's drive.

Best to remain distant. That's our advice for now.

Even on the best of days, AW forum is crawling with slither.

Absolute Write Down

Is it just possible that these people are responsible?

This is an update to our previous post found here.  

Absolute Write is DOWN! No question, and it's been down for many weeks now. Whoever is operating the DDOS attack against them is apparently relentless. It's also possible that the attacks pause to allow recovery time then begin again.

In any case, the site domain has been de-indexed from Google and the Absolute Write ISP is nervous over the tenacity of the attack. Who wants to be associated with a website that attracts such fierce rage and subsequent retaliation? Who will they attack next?

Also, if I were a user of Absolute Write, even a devoted one, would I risk openly supporting or even utilizing a site so incredibly despised by so many, including those capable of such wrath?

Worth a thought.

Absolute Write is down, and if karma and justice prevail, it will stay down.

Sustained DDOS Attacks on Absolute Write's Server - 01/2020

We've confirmed via MacAllister Stone (Melodi Sherman) twitter feed that the Absolute Write website is under continuous DDOS attack. In other words, the server is flooded with so many requests at once that it collapses under the strain. Apparently, some hackers, or people who know hackers, have undertaken an attempt to take Absolute Write off the Internet map. 

W.A.R. does not know the point or date of ignition, but safe to assume the AW mods or owners bullied someone over the brink and these latest victims called in the heavy guns.

This kind of retaliation against them comes as no shock. It's surprising that such a tactic didn't happen much sooner than this! How many hundreds of people can you demean, insult, mock, and threaten before karmic retribution kicks in?

A source close to the action informs us that Stone and Spangenberg consider themselves as blameless and pure as ever. They are simply the victims of hateful writers, especially men. Oh, those men and their hacker machines!


Join the Good Fight - Have You or Someone You Know Been Abused?


If you are someone you know has been verbally abused or libeled by Absolute Write mods or users on their Water Cooler forum, please take time to click the link above and add your voice to the Complaints Board.

Others will thank you for it!

Absolute Write Net Worth Plummets to Less Than 25K

                                                                   Current WOWeb Estimate of Absolute Write Revenue

Following up on our previous post about the huge traffic plummet, we thought to check out the good old WOWeb that analyzes net worth and revenue potential of commercial websites and discovered that Absolute Write is diving ever closer to rock bottom. After our previous favorite and much-missed AW ower, Jenna, sold Absolute Write to Melodi Sherman (aka Macallister Stone) and Lisa Spangenberg, AW temporarily expanded in worth to well over $100K, propelled in part by a growing reputation for bullying and harshness that created lots of news on the Internet; but that soon backfired on them as more and more writers began to bravely speak out against their tyrannical excesses, bullying mods, and philistine owners. After a few years, the voices became a roaring torrent, and finally, gradually, Absolute Write and its Water Cooler forum began to feel the pinch.

You just can't keep trashing people for year after year without conscience or consequence. The lack of the former feeds the severity of the latter. As we've said elsewhere on this site:


Absolute Write Plummets in the Alexa Rankings

Absolute Write Viewer Decline in Last Three Months of 2019

Even Writer's Digest drops a bit during the holiday season, but only by a few percent as Xmas draws closer. As we can see above, Absolute Write is in a precipitous fall, extending its overall decline over the past few years. And why is that? Might a factor be the scores of blogs, boards, and websites displaying the many horrendous acts of bullying, character assassination, and other nasty bits of toxic flotsam that absorb and surround Absolute Write like a swarm of germs? Just maybe?

Now, the Water Cooler is increasingly infected by social justice fanatics, thus making things even harder on the average writer seeking help rather than SJW hysteria and the unending indignant rage that always follows.

Absolute Write Forums and the Coming of Bully Culture

Absolute Write is a site I no longer recommend. Interacting in the forums is usually unpleasant. It’s still good to check for info on bogus agents and scam publishers. But take everything with a grain or two of salt and don’t post anything. It’s dominated by bitter, bad-tempered rudeness.

     From "Online Author Etiquette"

We thought it worth noting that the history of bully abuse on Absolute Write (chronicled here in so many ways) resembles the current social media problems with bully mobs. The socio-psychology is nearly identical. As we noted previously in another post about iPredators:

  • iPredators are driven by deviant fantasies, desires for power and control, retribution, religious fanaticism, political reprisal, psychiatric illnessperceptual distortions, peer acceptance or personal and financial gain.

Does the above sound familiar to you?

Thank You and a Beware Warning

The Mean Girls of High School Now "Grown" and Still Exhibiting Their Rage

Once again, thanks to our many supporters who won't stop talking about the absolutely ridiculous and insulting behavior on Absolute Write. We understand that you wish to communicate backchannel, however, please feel free to post here anonymously. Your ID will not be known or shared in any manner.

This is necessary to prevent anyone from Absolute Write gaining enough knowledge to effectively retaliate against you or anyone else.

You guys are simply and terrifically wonderful!

Best Wishes,

W.A.R. Admins

Latest Reviews on the Complaints Board

The Regime Endures and the Hostility Continues - Lest we Forget Part II

From the Sitejabbber review board (removed from the mainstream net by AW):

Rebecca H. Tells a True and Sad Tale

I was a member there on and off for quite some time. Met some great critique partners there, but sadly, the moderators and their minions have a way of running people off the boards. They are abusive to the members and will ban/suspend anyone who defends against the abuse. I've watched it happen to too many good people. If you prove one of their lies wrongs, they will delete your post and ban you. They are using their power to hide the truth. What is worse is that they then start rumors and/or misrepresent new authors and publishing houses.

This is where my most recent receive comes into play.
After seeing how they treated others, I long since left, but as I started a new publishing house, a thread was started there, and so I revisited to answer some questions. The moderator (VeinGlory) approached the situation that was very clearly to everyone witnessing attack. Anyone who posted to say that and defend our publishing house had their post immediately deleted; anyone who agreed with VeinGlory had their posts remain.

This created a false sense of what the community as a whole thought of our publishing house. If anyone doubts this, contact me and I can send you references for our publishing house, and you will see clearly that there are no posts from them on absolutewrite. There is a deceitful reason for this. They said that my editing experience, having assisted several authors previously into print deals with publishers in good standing, was not enough to prove we know what we are doing.

They said that our first book being a 5-star, bestseller, did not count.

They called the author of that bestselling novel an "aspiring author" and that, to them, was further evidence we don't know what we are doing (can anyone explain the logic on that one?)

They said that ranking in the top 1% on editing skills tests also did not count.

My experience in business, having helped my husband set up and run a successful business, does not count if I don't offer proof. I offered the only proof I can (proof of income and assets) and they ignored that and moved onto the next thing to attack us for. Several times throughout the conversation, and politely requested they just let us do our thing. Withhold judgment until they had more to go on. Let others decide for themselves. But they would not let it go. On and on they went. They denied they were attacking us and every time someone said otherwise, they deleted that person's post and banned their account. They claimed THAT person was attacking THEM ... but that they were not attacking me. The reality is, they are attacking us, and this is not the first time they have done this. And they feel they are allowed to do this but no one else is allowed to say contrary. The "gang mentality" there is frightening.

The reality is, as veinglory showed in the thread with one of her comments, that a small pub once shut down without paying her the money they owed. I am so sorry that happened to her. But our business works on available funds and not credit, which means we don't spend money we don't have, and any money that comes in for a book will go directly to the author (we don't have creditors to repay!)

Veinglory says we won't be around in 2 years. I asked her to check back with us in 2 years, then, but apparently it's actually her MISSION to spend the next two years making that happen. We will not be deterred, but I did want to bring this to light in a place where Veinglory is nor a moderator who can delete the evidence.

If you are an author looking for background information on a publisher that is based on fact and is NOT biased, try preds and eds instead. They investigate and go based on fact, not whim.



Janet Reid, Literary Agent: Query Question: Absolute Write

Aug 18, 2014 - With a simple Google search of "bullying on AbsoluteWrite" a variety of results come up where people talk about their experiences. Now I'm ...


Exposing Absolute Write by providing evidence of defamation, cyber bullying, malware infections, and damaging advice given to writers.
January · ‎February · ‎March · ‎April

Why I'm done with AbsoluteWrite (Or: the post that lets two dozen ...


Mar 31, 2014 - It's not like I hadn't been warned about AbsoluteWrite before I signed up. ... warrant rating about AW on a site about internet bullying of authors.

Haters Gonna Hate: The Smear Campaign Against Absolute Write


Write Absolute Reviews of Bully Boards calls me the Tariq Aziz of Absolute Write" and Absolute Blight styles me "a totally paranoid wingnut and cyberstalker, ...

Forums Review: Absolute Write


That breeds cliques and makes other posters feel like there's special treatment. Absolute Write is just like that. They allow bullies to mod. They also allow cliques ...

The Cult - Absolute Write Water Cooler | DarkMarkets


Feb 19, 2010 - At the Absolute Write forums, you'll learn more about the craft of writing and ... What if the Absolute Write Water Cooler is the bully and the liar?

MacAllister Stone (@AbsoluteWrite) | Twitter


The latest Tweets from MacAllister Stone (@AbsoluteWrite). Sentimental ... I organized an elementary school playground uprising to ambush a playground bully.

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Consumer complaints, reviews and opinions about absolutewrite.com website.