It seems I have run into my very first deadbeat client.
I've had a couple of clients try to stiff me in the past. One was over a paltry sum — a client tried to get away with not paying me the remaining 50 percent on a small project after it was completed. (I got the first half up front before I started work.) Another client claimed he wasn't happy with my work (a classic case of him not giving me information and materials on time, and then getting mad at me when as a result I couldn't meet deadlines) and tried to refuse paying me the last installment, until of course I threatened to report him to the propert authorities.
Both situations were brief, however, and were won out by my persistence. This time, I'm not so sure there will be a happy ending to the story. The owner of a small local magazine I write for is now more than two months late on a hefty payment. He has been giving me the run around for more than a month, but in the past week he started ignoring my emails altogether. I've been in touch with the other writers and the editor, and they are all in the same boat.
All of us conspired to write an email threatening to report him as a nonpaying employer/client if he doesn't pay us all within ten business days. Stay tuned for more information — if he doesn't pay (and I fear he won't), I plan to make sure the entire freelance writing community knows not to write for this guy!