I've seen this estimation of the "Scott Thomas" persona linked all over the place. In it, John Barnes, a self-described 'book doctor' gives a diagnosis:
I see manuscripts with all nine of these symptoms [identical to those in the "Shock Troops" anecdotes] – you might think of it as one syndrome with nine common symptoms – about a half dozen times per year, generally from agents rather than as offers to book-doctor them since the creators usually have no money and the books have only limited commercial potential. And they all come from pretty much the same sort of person...[SNIP]Barnes lays out the observable characteristics of such story-tellers, and states,
I can say that every single time I have been in a position to find out, the "used to be a cop," "I was a Green Beret," "I was a roof man for the Cleveland Fire Department," etc. etc. etc. has turned out to be a fake. Not that there are not guys with adventurous and romantic backgrounds around writing programs or in professional writing – I've known, among others, highly talented writers who were one-time paramedics, professional boxers, police, private eyes, back-country prospectors, and so forth.It's a "read the whole thing" sort of piece.
But none of those guys [that have actual dangerous backgrounds] wrote like "Scott Thomas". (For that matter they don't write much like each other, either).
"Scott Thomas", however, writes exactly like the mid-20s macho MFA student who is lying about an adventurous background.