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Well-known author Samantha A. Cole, who was a close online friend of Meachen’s, expressed her anger over the apparent hoax.

“I was horrified, stunned, livid, and felt like I’d been kicked in the gut and the chest at the same time. We grieved for the loss of the woman we considered a friend,” she said.

“I personally was harassed by another author who loves to create drama, claiming I was one of the authors who bullied Susan and drove her to suicide. To have it end up being a hoax that was dragged out for almost two and a half years is a slap in the face to anyone who ever supported her.”

People have rightly since been expressing criticism towards Meachen, with many asking whether she would give back any of the donations she and her ‘family’ received in the wake of her faked death.

But when one author pushed her on this, Meachen replied: “I would again stress this wasn’t demanded of them. I’m sorry they feel wronged but they choose to DONATE. It doesn’t magically become a loan because they regret it now.”

Upset members of the indie book community have since reached out to the sheriff’s department in Meachen’s county to file fraud claims.

If you think you may be experiencing depression or another mental health problem, please contact your general practitioner. If you’re based in Australia, 24-hour support is available through Lifeline on 13 11 14 or beyondblue on 1300 22 4636.

Feature Image: Amazon/Mamamia.

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