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Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus

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A couple of hurricane links:

Galveston Daily News: Families falling through cracks with FEMA
GALVESTON - Hurricane Ike left about a foot of water in Margaret Makupson’s 29th Street house.
But the Federal Emergency Management Agency says she doesn’t qualify for rental assistance.
Like 375,299 other residents of the upper Texas Coast - 77 percent of the people who asked for housing assistance - Makupson and Diaz have fallen through gaps in the safety net the government spreads wide to help victims of natural disasters.

and again: Galveston News: Ike now drying up schools
The Galveston public school district, which lost 30 percent of its students, has held off on repairing two flooded elementary schools because it can’t afford to fix schools that sustained more than 50 percent damage. If district trustees ultimately decide to close those schools, some teachers and staff members will lose their jobs, Superintendent Lynne Cleveland said.


DearAuthor has a If you like Lois McMaster Bujold, you'll also like-- thread for recommendations.

I posted another DA link yesterday about the new ePress that's spamming authors and readers, and apparently there's also been spam on NaNoWriMo boards. NaNoWriMo has gotten so popular, the participants have become a target for scammers, so if you participate or know people who do, remember to be on the lookout for offers that seem too good to be true. Check out the Writer Beware Blog and Alerts for Writers and Warnings and Cautions for Writers. There are scam contests, scam publishers, scam agents, scam everything out there.

You really have to be careful and do your research. A couple of years ago Writer Beware posted about one of the weirdest scam agent operations. There were sock puppets, secret identities online and in real life, it was crazy. But one of the oddest things was that the scammer was not asking for money, and that was one of the reasons why so many aspiring writers were fooled; they were not being asked to pay fees, so they figured the agent was real and really trying to get them published. But as the situation went on, it became apparent that the scammer was feeding off the thrill of fooling so many people. I think he even posed as a client and reported himself to Writer Beware at one point, if I'm remembering right. (Maybe somebody can find the link to the report on all this, I know it's around somewhere.)

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Jeez, I know it's a lot of stuff to tangle through, but it's not rocket science. Meanwhile, a co-worker's son was called by FEMA and told he qualified for hotel costs, even though his house is perfectly livable! What the hell is going on?

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