Why are any of us surprised by this revelation?
After all, what author wouldn't want to write a work-for-hire novel for $250 and a percentage of some vague promise when the book is published? And don't forget your name may or may not be on the book. But who cares, right? After all, this is your shot at the big time.
Yes, the big time. Isn't that what Frey gave Jobie Hughes when Mr. A Million Little Pieces hired the then unknown author to write I Am Number Four?
Yes, straight to the big time. Unless you violate Frey's confidentiality agreement by speaking to the media. Because doing that won't allow Frey to slam you with impunity. Or to quote Frey's own words about why he needs to keep Jobie Hughes away from the media, "He sounds like a fucking idiot when you put a recorder in front of his mouth."
Ah yes. Nothing like winning the praise of the man who bought and sold your literary soul.
The only good thing to come of this is that the surplus of literary wannabes in the country will be thinned by Frey's adventures in fictional exploitation. And at the end of the experience, all they'll have done is realize that James Frey is a jerk.
Why is anyone still surprised?