Wednesday, August 6, 2014

August 2014 IWSG

Click here to find out more and to see a list of other IWSG blogs.
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

I'm really bugged about something that happened this week to an author acquaintance of mine. This lady has been quite successful and has many books to her credit. She's made a career as a traditionally published author and now is branching into indie publishing.

She was contacted by someone who said they had been given an ARC to read and review. The book was scheduled to come out in August. The person said the book was almost identical to one of the author's books that had been released about fifteen years ago. Now, the author writes clean romances, and this book even had a religious element. In the ARC, the character names had been changed and the religious scenes replaced with graphic sex scenes. But it was HER book.

As you can imagine, the author was appalled.

She asked if the person would email her a copy of the ARC. The person who had contacted her declined, but did ask the plagiarist P about the striking similarities. P said she had collaborated with my friend.

Um, no.

Then my friend contacted P, and she went all defensive. Said a mistake had been made, and she would pull the book. But she also went sobbing on FB about it, and now her fans are attacking my friend.

Like she has done something wrong by protesting the theft of her intellectual property.

It blows me away. It disgusts me.

I cannot fathom the sense of violation I would feel if someone stole my creative work and passed it off as their own. If they twisted these characters, who had lived in my mind and heart for years, into mockeries of what they were.

Please be careful, both with your own work and with other people's. Please. 

ETA: P has been outed big time by one of the reviewers who took the effort to read the original book.

30 comments:

  1. What a terrible thing to do to another author! There are enough ideas out there - create your own.

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  2. What an unfortunate thing. I wonder how many other works P has ripped off? I hope your friend's name is not further dragged through the mud on this.

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    1. I've wondered the same thing, Jeff. It really irks me too because the real author is such a gentle soul.

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  3. That's terrible! I don't really understand what motivates someone to plagiarize--if you want to actually write something, then write your own book. If you don't want to write (or if you're too lazy), then don't. I hope everything turns out ok for your friend!

    Sarah Foster
    August IWSG Co-host

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    1. You'd think all the work to get the original piece into text you could manipulate would be as much trouble as writing your own. *sigh*

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  4. I can relate, there are at least five or six sites which copy and paste everything from HOLLYWOOD SPY (and I don't mean just the text but even the formating) and they earn money from Google Ads by stealing my materials and there is nothing I can do :)

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    1. That's outrageous. Is it because they're in places where the copyright laws are lax or lacking?

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  5. Awful thing to do indeed. If people can't create their own ideas then they shouldn't write. Nutballs like that can sure be draining on a person too.

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  6. Oh no. That's horrible. I don't understand why/how people can be so small and mean. I hope P gets her just deserts.

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  7. Wow. I can't even imagine how violated I'd feel if that happened to me. And the sense of helplessness too. Not sure what she can do to stop the other work from coming out other than have a lawyer send a threatening letter.

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  8. That's terrible. And lucky for your friend that someone caught it.

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  9. What a twisted world we live in. Isn't it bad enough that someone STOLE from her, but then to try and turn the tables and make the original author out to be the bad guy. Sounds like calling 'good evil and evil good', to me.

    This type of thing really disgusts me also.

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  10. Weird stuff. I've heard of such things, but thought it was pretty rare. Nonetheless, it wouldn't make anyone happy. I suppose the silver lining for your friend is that no one can write like her, and no matter who plagerizes her work they won't be able to reproduce the quality and heartfeltness that connects an author to their readers.

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    1. I did too. This is rather blatant too.

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  11. Scaaary. Ugh. That's terrible. :(

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  12. This is so awful.
    My momma always told me 'your sins will find you out.' Guess she was right.

    IWSG #184 until Alex culls the list again.

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  13. Why would someone do this? From a moral point of view it's appalling, but in the days of the internet when this kind of thing will be found out and spread across the world, it's just stupid. That writer's career is over.

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  14. It's absolutely disgusting. I hope she was outed to Amazon as well.

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  15. Wow, that is scary, and disgusting.

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  16. What a horrible thing a writer can do to another. And to try to turn the tables...ugh.

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  17. That would be horrible. Hope it all gets resolved.

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  18. It's frustrating when this happens, and I am glad the technology helps catch more violators now than before. Sad that your friend had to find out about it in such a manner and that the content was offensive. Wow.

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