Getting on the bestsellers' lists of The Wall Street Journal or The New York Times can offer a huge career boost for authors, especially first timers. But why leave that opportunity up to chance when you can just pay for it? The Wall Street Journal shines the spotlight on ResultSource, a San Diego-based marketing firm that will, for a fee, buy large quantities of a new book to give the impression of an organic spike in sales.

"Publishing a book builds credibility, but having a Bestseller initiates incredible growth—exponentially increasing the demand for your thought leadership, skyrocketing your speaking itinerary and value," ResultSource's website says. But publishing company representatives told the Journal they were uncomfortable with authors using ResultSource and instead said they wanted their authors to work on creating longer lasting demand for their books.