Tabetha Jones likes money. I think we’ve pretty much established that. I like money, too. Hell, don’t we all? Sure we do.
What most of us DON’T do, however, is scam, cheat, steal and beg money out of other people and then abuse them relentlessly until they go away and stop asking for it back. She does, and keeps on doing it. And no. That’s not defamation. It remains the truth as long as there are Mystic Press and Phoenix Fire authors that are still unpaid. The statutes might have run out (which she callously celebrated right here on this blog) but moral obligation doesn’t. Nor does the fact that it happened in the first place.
I think it’s pretty clear that none of them will ever get paid. All they can do is move on with their lives and careers and be grateful that she didn’t stick ’em for more. That and make sure to protect their works, past and present, to make sure she can’t use them ever again. That’s what we’re still here on this blog for: to make sure to remind past victims to protect themselves, and to warn any new, potential victims to be careful.
But what is the best way to ensure that she doesn’t victimize any authors anymore? Easy. To keep her away from the publishing world.
Toward that end, I’ve got a suggestion for her. It’s not snarky or malicious in any way. It’s a straight-up honest suggestion that I hope she takes to heart.
She could start a foundation. It’s like creating a corporation, but requires the proper paperwork. With a foundation, she could conduct business as the proper, hardworking businesswoman she claims to be. With a foundation, she could help people instead of abusing them. She claims to want to help people, so a foundation would be the best way to do that.
Foundations are created for a specific purpose. This purpose is stated when the corporation is created, in the articles of incorporation. Charitable foundations can be created in the following categories:
There are a few more categories, but I doubt that she’d know very much about fostering international sports. I’m thinking her best bet would be education.
So, what purpose can she assign to her foundation in the area of education? Well, she goes goes on and on about how her father was a biker, right? Whether it’s true or not, that gives her the perfect purpose for her foundation.
A family foundation is usually created in a family member’s name. She could create the Larry Willis foundation for… something motorcycle related. To educate women who want to learn to ride their own. To provide educational materials that teach the public about being aware of biker safety in traffic. Or the need for helmet safety. Or whatever subject she can think of that would best serve the biker community in her area.
There are a lot of people that she could benefit, legitimately, if that’s truly what she wants to have happen as a result of her actions.
Many, if not most, foundations are charities with 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. That means that anything she spends in the creation and maintenance of said foundation is tax-deductible, including incorporation fees, any trips she takes on foundation business (transportation, lodging, meals, etc), materials, a portion of her rent… the possibilities are endless. If she buys a paper clip to secure foundation papers, she can write it off. And then get them back as tax returns.
Foundations generally get funded by donations which those donating can then write off as charitable donations. Those funds are then granted to benefit the people and/or organizations cited in the articles of incorporation, whether it’s those burgeoning biker babes, or whatever other educational materials or services she decides to provide. And she gets an ongoing paycheck.
So, in short:
Her benefactors get to write off their contributions.
People get helped.
She and her foundation executives draw salaries.
And she gets to carry on the legacy of Larry Willis. It’s a win for everyone involved.
The only catch is that there are taxes to be paid and paperwork to be managed. But I personally think that she could handle it if she put her mind to it. She’s definitely got the gift for gab, no small measure of charm, she knows a lot of people who could be potential donors, and without any other day job, she’s got the time to dedicate to running a foundation.
On top of all that, she gets to redeem her name to the public.
I think it’s a perfect fit. I hope she does too.