First off, I want to add my voice to those of other readers who are frustrated and angered by this newest plagiarism issue (if you somehow missed it yesterday, Dear Author broke the story HERE.)
In the past I would have just been upset and felt horrible for the authors who were the victims of theft (having something stolen from you always feels more than intrusive) as well as the readers who paid good money for a new story. Not to mention I would have wondered why someone who called herself a writer would hurt another writer like that.
Unfortunately, the problem is actually personal this time.
This time there are tweets and posts and comments and I’m sure other stuff where people share information and ideas…and a large number of those were about the problem with indies and self-publishing and that now the reader is never going to be able to trust those.
It broke my heart. Obviously I don’t want readers to feel they can’t trust me or my peers who I know are working hard to put good (original!) stories out.
Kaavya Viswanathan – How Opal Mehta Got Kissed, Got Wild, and Got a Life. Plagiarized from: Megan F. McCafferty, “Sloppy Firsts” and “Second Helpings.”
Janet Daily ended up admitting to repeatedly plagiarizing Roberts’ work – and to this day has fans and publishing contracts.
Cassie Edwards plagiarized Paul Tolme on, of all things, the mating of ferrets for her romance novel. Again, still has fans, still has publishing contracts.
This is me not touching all the talk about Cassie Claire.
If you haven’t read about the case against Alex Haley’s ROOTS, you should.
The list goes on… and it goes all the way back to the first time someone told someone else a story.
My point? Yes, it’s always good to be an aware shopper and it’s sad that we can’t trust people with the products they want to sell, but please - please - do not make plagiarism an Indie Issue.
And, to finish my point: Those two books that were plagiarized this week? Both of them started out self-published…and original.