Military 'memoirs' by bullsh*tters

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Good day, I shall try and keep this brief.
My girlfriend and I and both work in book publishing, as to quite a few friends. I expect many people here will be familiar with the problem of fantasists, liars and exaggerators getting their fake military memoirs put out by publishers (many of whom are out to make a quick buck and don't pry too deeply in any case). Recent cases include those of Philip Sessarego and of Jack Livesey, the latter of whom actually conned George Forty into being his co-author.
The number of such submissions has increased markedly over the last few years and, although many are easy to spot (written in blue crayon, ages and dates don't add up etc.) it is often quite difficult to tell someone who has a great book in them from someone who is full of BS. One also doesn't want to ask a bona fide veteran if they can prove they're not a 'walt'.
A friend has recently received a submission from a gentleman who claims some pretty serious special forces experience from the 1950s–60s and writes bloody well. She has no reason to suspect him of dishonesty, but having dealt with Livesey a few years ago, only to find out he was a liar, she is rather cautious. What I would like to know is if it is possible to do any kind of credentials check on him before signing a contract and handing over a wadge of cash.

I know this is a bit cheeky but I'm sure ARRSE users are as sick of these people making money dishonestly as we are, and it is publishers' unthinking credulity in taking everything at face value is largely to blame.


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Reviews Editor
Couple of points - if these guys did not produce spurious books with didgy accounts, then some Arrsers would lose their raison d'etre.

Secondly, I thing Good and Bad CO should be asked if they like Arrse being used to 'out' people and potentially be on the end of a large law-suit. Maybe you should check with them about this.
Thank you for your reply. I am not interested in publicly 'outing' anyone, nor would I give a specific reason for declining to publish anything. I would just send a generic rejection letter.


Book Reviewer
This really shouldn't be in CA. I'm sure anyone who wishes to can PM you, K_B.
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